While this was only the first year that Lizzie Lacy competed in track and field, the Menlo School senior made great strides. She capped her standout career on Saturday in fitting fashion.
Competing against some of the best runners in the nation, Lacy raced to a fifth-place finish and earned a medal in the girls' 3,200 meters at the 97th annual CIF State Track and Field Championships on Saturday night at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Clovis.
"I definitely had my doubts," said Lacy. "There was a ton of great competition, but I'm beyond happy with myself and my accomplishments."
Lacy finished off her season with a personal best of 10:23.86, fastest in the Central Coast Section this season and yet another school record. The time also moved her to No. 8 on the all-time CCS list, just missing the 10:23.85 by Leigh's Rebecca Chamberlain, the 1985 state champ.
"She a very smart and tough runner and she showed it last night," said Menlo coach Jorge Chen.
With 200 meters left in the race, Lacy was around eighth place. She put on "an insane" kick that nearly caught the fourth-place finisher.
Destiny Collins of Great Oak won the race in a national-leading 9:53.79 with NorCal leader Fiona O'Keeffe second in 10:01.14. The two were favored for those two spots. Nonetheless, Lacy made the most of her opportunity.
"She was very pleased," said Chen. "It was hard leading up to CCS since she has so many senior activities, and State even more. There will be great things coming from her in the future."
CCS champ Cate Ratliff of Santa Cruz was ninth in 10:25.92.
Lacy began her senior year beating Ratliff to the finish line at the Division IV state championships in cross country, with Lacy taking third.
Next stop for Lacy will be Amherst, where she'll begin her college career in the fall running on the cross-country team.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Menlo-Atherton junior Kathryn Mohr made the most of her first trip to the state finals by winning a jump-off in the girls' pole vault to finish eighth at 11-9. Her season best was 12-0.
In the girls' 1,600, Gunn junior Gillian Meeks ran a lifetime best of 4:56.39 but finished 12th in the fast finale. Amanda Gehrich of Tesoro won in a U.S.-leading 4:39.33.