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Draper Journal

Record-setting sprinters lead CCHS boys to state track title

Jun 28, 2021 02:58PM ● By Catherine Garrett

The Corner Canyon High boys track team won the 6A state title May 18 at Davis High. (Photo courtesy AStrong Photography)

By Catherine Garrett | [email protected]

Corner Canyon High’s Cody Hagen, Noah Kjar and Harrison Taggart have been champions on the football field for the past three seasons and this spring the star athletes demonstrated the same excellence on the track. 

Hagen won the 100 and 200 meter races at the 6A state track and field championships May 18 at Davis High School with Taggart coming in second in both events with Kjar placing sixth and fourth, respectively. 

“No Utah team in history had three sprinters break 11 seconds in the 100 meters and 22 seconds in the 200 meters before,” said head coach Devin Moody. “These three are pretty special. They were the energy of our team. We built around what they were doing and they were so consistently good.”

“Winning the 100 and 200 was a highlight for me,” Hagen said. “That’s been my top goal since the beginning of the season. There are so many great runners in these events and you know you need to be at your best.”

“I had a lot of fun taking one-two with Cody,” Taggart said. “It was definitely what we were looking for.”

The trio’s top placements helped the Chargers win the boys state track title, a feat that was expected last season but unable to be realized amid Covid cancellations. 

“We felt we could compete for the title, but you can’t fully gauge where you stand statewide until the last week or so,” Moody said. “So, we simply focused on doing what we could and only worrying about ourselves. We came in with confidence and felt like we were competing for two teams—this year’s and last year’s. It was a good feeling to do it for both groups.”

“State was awesome,” Hagen said. “It’s so great to be there with all the top athletes in the state. It’s a cool day to see the benefit of all the work we have put in as a team. The individual awards mean a lot, but to win as a team means more to me. So many guys stepped up and contributed on the team. I’m lucky to be part of a great team with the best coaches who are incredible and prepared us well.”

“It was pretty rewarding to win state,” Noah Kjar said. “We were a shoo-in last season and wanted it so bad for last year’s team.”

The 4x100 relay lineup of Hagen, Noah Kjar, Taggart, Cody Strong, Aiden McDonald and Tate Kjar also placed first and solidified their spot in the top-three nationally in 2021 while setting a Utah state record in the event. 

“I ran the second leg and handed it off to my brother Tate for the third leg in the finals,” Noah Kjar said. “It was pretty cool to be under the lights and have that moment with Tate and my team.”

“This race is my favorite since it involves close friends of mine,” Hagen said. “We have trained together for many years so it was neat to win and set the state record.”

Also taking first at state for CCHS was the 4x800 relay team of Jackson Henstrom, Carter Cutting, Gannon Jensen, Jake Orr, Noah Hanson and Eli Kimball, just edging out Syracuse for the top spot. “It was all on Jake’s shoulders as our anchor and he handled the pressure as a great captain and team leader,” Moody said.

Moody credited coaches Eric Kjar and Robert Pickering for their coaching and training of the sprints group.

Other top placers for the Chargers at the state championships were Orr (second, 800 meters), the 4x400 relay team of Cutting, Noah Hanson, Noah Kjar, Tate Kjar, Orr and Cody Strong (third), Luke Sampson (fifth, shot put) and Carter Welling—who placed third in the high jump, clearing 6-feet-8-inches, after trying out the sport just weeks before. 

On the girls side, Paje Rasmussen placed third in the 200 meters and fourth in the 100 meters.

“Paje is the embodiment of sports,” Moody said. “She’s had multiple setbacks with two knee surgeries and has had to go through a refocusing and resetting process twice. It has been inspiring to watch.”

Other All-State finishers for the Chargers were Emma Hamblin (fifth, pole vault) and the 4x400 relay team of Paris Rasmussen, Addie Kjar, Chesney White, Maryn Granger, Maddie Taggart and Skye Meters (eighth).

Also on the track team this season were Jackson Beuhler, Bostyn Carlson, Christian Castro, Jada Clayton, Yitzhak Contreras, Brad Critchfield, Lezlee Crittenden, Isabel Crofts, Lily Crofts, Ben Dastrup, Carson Day, Arden Edwards, Courtney Fairbourn, Dayton Fowler, Zachary Furner, Avery Garcia, Mark Geilman, Lindsey Glod, Maryn Granger, Zach Hale, Avery Hartey, Lisa Hastings, Addison Hoopes, Dawson Jacobsen, Spencer Kirkham, Jayden Loeser, Heather Lund, Courtney Madsen, Caitlin Madsen, Eli Maires, Jared Malula, Sunny Meyers, Ally Milford, Grayson Milne, Teancum Mitchell, Charly Murie, Anna Nelson, Kiara Nelson, Kate Newton, Kamylle Nez, Steven Oler, Allison Oler, Hugo Ortega, Tanner Partridge, Andrew Patterson, Ava Perkins, Luke Petty, Matthew Proboski, Preston Rasmussen, Luke Sampson, Hannah Shinall, Sadie Steiner, Gavin Styer, Breauna Tsosie-Nez, Hreinson Vanover, Aubrey Wahlquist, Bracken Warburton, Connor Whatcott, Chesney White and Reagan Winget.