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Mia Brahe-Pedersen of Lake Oswego, Lincoln relay team of Henry Alexander, Finn Chamberlain, Tucker Bowerfind, Aiden Smith win titles on Day 4 of Nike Outdoor Nationals

Brahe-Pedersen added Sunday’s title to the Nike Indoors Nationals 200 championship she earned in February in New York.
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By René Ferrán | Photo by Leon Neuschwander 

For three members of Lincoln’s boys 4x1-mile relay team, Sunday’s victory at the Nike Outdoor Nationals track and field championships at Hayward Field in Eugene capped a long season that closed their high school careers.

For Mia Brahe-Pedersen, her national championship in the girls 200 meters is just the latest milestone in the rising Lake Oswego junior’s career.

Brahe-Pedersen bounced back from her narrow defeat in Saturday’s 100 final to edge Georgia state champion Adaejah Hodge by four-hundredths of a second, with her winning time of 23.25 seconds making her the first Oregon girl to win a sprint title in the meet’s history.

The Cardinals quartet of rising senior Henry Alexander and recent graduates Finn Chamberlain, Tucker Bowerfind and Aiden Smith kicked off the final day’s track events by winning the 4xMile race in 17:36.02 running for Forest Park Track Club.

Smith, Chamberlain and Bowerfind also ran on the distance medley relay team that placed third Friday, with Smith running a 4:08 mile leg in that race.

“I’d been a little bit skeptical of my fitness based on previous weeks of training,” said Smith, the team’s anchor who signed with the Ducks this spring. “I was feeling burned out after a long season.

“But when I finished the DMR in 4:08 and almost got us into second after getting the stick fifth or sixth, I had a lot of confidence going into the 4xMile. I knew I could catch someone if I had to close hard, or if I had a lead, I could go out hard.”

Sunday’s race saw Smith get the baton with a slight lead thanks to Bowerfind, who erased a one-second deficit during his leg and handed off to Smith 2½ seconds ahead.

Smith didn’t need to go 4:08 as he did Friday, but his 4:17.5 anchor was four seconds faster than anyone else in the field ran in any of the four legs.

“That’s my last high school race,” said Smith, who plans to take a week off before resuming training for college. “And I’m ending on a high, as national champs.”

Lincoln relay

Brahe-Pedersen also ended a long weekend on a high note, adding Sunday’s title to the Nike Indoors Nationals 200 championship she earned in February in New York.

“I have to say it doesn’t get any less exciting each time,” Brahe-Pedersen said Monday. “I had to work so hard for it. It just feels like everything is paying off. Everything I did was worth it.”

Hodge, a native of the British Virgin Islands, won the U-17 titles in the 100 and 200 at the CARIFTA Games in Jamaica in April and the 100, 200, 400 and long jump at the Georgia Class 6A state championships last month.

The two state champions ran side-by-side in Lanes 6 and 7 for the final, with Brahe-Pedersen able to key off Hodge on her right.

She caught Hodge coming out of the curve, then held on for the victory despite cramping up in the final 10 meters.

“I guess I got lucky that I was able to hold her off,” Brahe-Pedersen said. “I was so grateful to have her on the outside. I feel I do well when I have someone to chase, and I knew when I passed her, I was doing good.”

Brahe-Pedersen now will prepare for the U.S. Under-20 national championships that begin next weekend at Hayward Field in conjunction with the U.S. national championships. The top two finishers at the U20 nationals qualify for the U20 world championships in Cali, Colombia, the first week of August.

“Just making it to the U20s is a huge accomplishment,” Brahe-Pedersen said. “It would be great just to make a relay team, but even if I don’t, I’m just happy that I get to go. I’m excited for the competition.” 

Two other Oregon girls joined Brahe-Pedersen on the podium as All-Americans from the 200 final. Lily Jones, a recent Roosevelt graduate and Oregon signee, placed third in 23.80, followed by Oregon City rising senior Sophia Beckmon in fourth in 23.93.

Brahe-Pedersen also anchored the Lakers 4x100 relay — including Quinn Greene, Josie Donelson and Dakota Webb-Hawkins ahead of her — to a runner-up finish in 47.37. She, Greene, Donelson and Riley Ha finished the day with a fourth-place finish in the 4x400 in 3:51.93.

Other All-American (top-six) finishers from Oregon in the Championship division Sunday included:

  • The Lincoln girls 4xMile team of Keira Saavedra, Emily Rehn, Eva Novy-Hildesley and Riley Cash, placing fourth in 20:53.12 for Forest Park TC.
  • Recent Franklin graduate Kaiya Robertson heads to Boise State in the fall off a third-place finish in the mile in 4:47.33.
  • Robertson’s teammate, Charlie North, finished fifth in the boys mile in 4:10.82. He will run at Georgetown next fall.
  • Recent Hermiston graduate Caden Hottman finished second in the boys hammer throw with a best of 204 feet, 10 inches.
  • Bailey Young, another recent Hermiston graduate, finished fifth in the girls shot put with a throw of 45-9 in the final round.
  • Central Catholic rising senior Kyeese Hollands added a second medal to her collection, finishing sixth in the discus with a best of 145-0. Hollands, who took third in Saturday’s javelin, also placed fourth in Sunday’s Javelin Showcase, a head-to-head competition in which the top eight qualifiers were placed in a bracket and had one throw in each round to win their matchup.

Four Oregon entries won national titles in the Emerging Elite division during the four-day competition, including three from the Tualatin program.

Rising junior Madison Speer followed her victory at the Oregon Hammer Throw Championships by winning nationals with a throw of 143-4, and the Timberwolves swept the 4x100 relays. The girls team of Stella Pfeifer, Elizabeth Graham, Abigail Katsuda and Isabella Kneeshaw won in 49.99, and the boys team of Marcus Ludes, Joshua Tedlock, Alex Smith and Noah Ogoli won in 43.51.

Hunter Angove, who recently graduated from Bandon after winning the Class 2A pole vault title for the Tigers, added a national title by clearing a personal-best 15-6¼.

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