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Friendly rivals Micah Perry of Barlow, Nolan Malcomson of Wells each a hurdles champion at 6A track state meet

“We talk back and forth between races, warm up together. It’s a great friendship.”

By René Ferrán | Photos by Taylor Balkom 

Two of the state’s best hurdlers went head-to-head one last time Saturday in the Class 6A boys 110-meter high hurdles final at the OSAA track and field championships at Hayward Field in Eugene. 

Barlow junior Micah Perry and Ida B. Wells senior Nolan Malcomson met for the second time in two days and the fourth time in the past 12 months — and for the fourth time, Perry got the best of his rival, winning in 14.34 seconds. 

“He’s such a great guy,” said Perry, who defended the title he won at the 6A culminating-week state meet a year ago. “We talk back and forth between races, warm up together. It’s a great friendship. I’m sad to see him leave because he’s a senior. Next year, I’ll have to hold it down myself.” 

Micah Perry Taylor Balkom

Perry blazed to a personal-best 14.08 in Friday’s prelims, No. 4 all-time in the state rankings and beating Malcomson one lane over. He hoped to become the second Oregon hurdler to break 14 seconds in the final.

“I wanted to start off strong, hit it as hard as I could as I did in prelims,” Perry said. “It wasn’t my most clean race I’ve run — prelims were a lot cleaner — but it got the job done. I didn’t quite get it, but I’m going to come back harder next season to get it.”

Malcomson was just happy to be in the race after injuring his left hip at practice Monday when he tripped over his spike and landed on it hard. 

“I didn’t have any range of motion on it, so I couldn’t use my left leg as my trail leg,” he explained.

One problem — he had never run the high hurdles with his left leg as his lead leg until Friday’s prelim. 

“That was a big learning curve,” he said. “It was interesting. So, to get second, I’m happy for that.”

As painful as the injury might have been, Malcomson wasn’t going to let it stop him from competing in the 300 hurdles. 

”I knew I didn’t care if I injured myself further,” the Lane Community College commit said. “I wanted to push. I wanted to beat my school record. I wanted to get that victory.”

Nolan Malcomson Taylor Balkom

Fortunately for Malcomson, he didn’t injure himself further. Better yet, he accomplished his two goals, winning in a personal-best and school-record 37.48 that moved him to No. 8 on the all-time state list.

“Dude, it’s amazing,” Malcomson said. “Finishing that race, looking up at that scoreboard and seeing my time, that’s a big accomplishment for me. There’s no words for it.”

West Linn senior (and Montana signee) Adam Maxwell took second in 37.74, good for No. 16 on the all-time state list. 

Best photos from Day 2 of 6A, 5A, 4A Oregon high school track and field state championships