Collier accomplished that feat Tuesday, and did so against one of the top Class C hurdlers in the state, Boothbay’s Morgan Crocker. In her first meeting of the season with Crocker, Collier ran a personal best of 49.46 seconds in the 300 as Lisbon once again swept a Mountain Valley Conference meet. 

“I had tougher competition so that pushed me a little harder to get a PR,” Collier said. “It felt amazing, like it wasn’t real.” 

Collier won both the 300 hurdles and 100-meter dash as the Lisbon girls accumulated 137 points, 53 points clear of Boothbay. Dirigo (63), Mountain Valley (51) and St. Dominic Academy (46) rounded out the five-team meet. 

Lisbon and Boothbay were 1-2 on the boys’ side as well, though the Greyhounds amassed 262 points to the Seahawks’ 129. Mountain Valley finished third with 76 points, followed by Dirigo (64), Oak Hill (30) and St. Dom’s (3). 

Collier is no stranger to first-place finishes this season. Entering Tuesday’s meet, the Lisbon sophomore compiled 13 victories among her four events — 100 hurdles, 300 hurdles, 100 dash and long jump. But Tuesday’s victory in the 300 hurdles felt a lot different for Collier. 

“I’m used to getting first, but I was expecting to get third or fourth and not doing as well,” Collier said. “I think it just pushed me because I wanted to get my time down. Morgan Crocker is a huge competitor for me. I think going against her really pushes me in meets.” 

Before her sub-50-second time in the 300 hurdles, her previous best came on April 28, when she completed the race in 51.48. She finished second that day to Dirigo’s Sabrina Daoud by six-hundredths of a second. Daoud was a scratch Tuesday. 

Collier’s new personal best is a testament to her training and conditioning, Lisbon assistant coach Hank Fuller said.

“For the 300 hurdles, the tough things about the hurdles is you’re not just running, you’re running and jumping,” Fuller said. “It is a long enough race that you have to be in shape and when you get tired at the seventh and eighth hurdles it shows whether you’ve worked hard enough to get in shape, which she clearly has done.”

Part of that training was to perfect her hurdling form. As a freshman, Fuller said Collier used to take short steps on her approach to each hurdle, in what he refers to as a stutter. That added precious time to her finishes. Collier no longer stutters on her approaches. 

Her improved hurdling form is noticeable in her times. At last year’s state meet, Collier completed the 300 hurdles in 53.48, placing sixth. Her last six meets have all been faster than her time at state, almost all of them by a full second. 

“Chase is a very hard worker,” Fuller said. “Having the new track and having hurdles at the proper distances have allowed us to teach her how to attack the hurdles with the right amount of steps. She’s an incredibly hard worker, very easy to coach.” 

Collier runs the 100 and 300 hurdles at every meet. Beside the obvious difference in distance, she said the two events require different approaches. 

“The 100 hurdles is more intense and aggressive and you have to focus on keeping your speed up and attacking every hurdle,” Collier said. “The 300, you have to focus on your endurance. You have to push through it in your mind and not so much your form.”

Collier has qualified for the state meet in all four of her events. 

The 300 hurdles was just one of three events Collier and Crocker faced off in Tuesday. Crocker, who is also the defending state champion in the 100 hurdles, got the better of Collier in said event, finishing in 17.22. Collier came in at 17.70. Crocker and Collier went 1-2 in the long jump as well. Crocker took the event by a half-inch, her top jump coming in at 15-feet 10.50 inches. 

The rest of the meet saw plenty of first-place finishes by the Greyhounds. Lisbon had 21 winners on the day — Collier, Charles Adams, Henry Adams and Bree Sautter winning multiple events. 

“I saw some positive changes,” Lisbon coach Dean Hall said. “Kids that are working hard are seeing the end result of their hard work. Confidence. The ability to go and take on someone they haven’t seen all year long and they know they’re faster, and they know they jump further and they know they throw harder and they still do well.” 

Dirigo’s Jessica Conant may not have won any of her events, but she managed to overcome some bad vegetables to record personal bests in a few of her races. 

“I threw up,” Conant said. “I ate some bad food before the race I guess. Don’t eat carrots before you run.” 

While not 100 percent, Conant still managed a second-place finish in the mile (6:03.05) and a third-place finish in the 400 (1:06.27). She gave the Cougars a sizable lead as the first leg of the 1,600 relay before Lisbon came from behind to win by just over a second in 4:40.11. 

Lisbon’s depth can be hard to compete with at times, Dirigo coach Gunnar Bradburry said. 

“They have way more numbers than I’ve got,” Bradburry said. “They can put a bunch of people out there. We don’t score anything in the pole vault or the high jump. We lose a lot of points there. When you only got 13 boys and 13 girls it’s tough, but they’re all good. Good kids. Tough kids.” 

Rachael Knight and Hunter White provided the Cougars’ with victories in the girls’ discus and boys’ 800, respectively. 

Oak Hill’s Drew Gamage won both the triple jump (43-6.5) and high jump (6-00.)

St. Dom’s went 1-2-3 in the 3,200, led by Ella Brown, who came in at 12:58.80. Sydney Sirois grabbed the win in the race walk for the Saints in 9:08.15. 

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