TACOMA — One of the first things Harris Cutuk saw Saturday morning was the word “winsome.”
That was when the Lynnwood senior knew it would be a good day.
Cutuk claimed the 3A boys discus title by more than four feet Saturday, launching a winning throw of 171 feet, 5 inches during the state track and field championships at Mount Tahoma High School.
“I know it sounds kind of corny, but I have this dictionary app on my phone, and it gives you a notification of a new word every day,” Cutuk said. “And today, it gave me ‘winsome.’
“And I took that as a sign that I was going to do good today — (that) I was going to win this whole thing. And that’s exactly what happened.”
Cutuk’s winning throw traveled about six feet farther than his third-place mark at last year’s state meet. And it fell only about three feet shorter than his personal-best mark of 174-6.5, which he set earlier this spring.
“Consistency, consistency, consistency,” longtime Lynnwood coach Duane Lewis said.
“He’s been real consistent over 160. … To be within five feet of his (personal best) here at state — the discus can be so fluky, so he did an outstanding job keeping his act together and accomplishing that.”
Cutuk’s state title served as a special send-off for Lewis, who is retiring after 51 seasons of coaching track and field in the Edmonds School District — including 46 at Lynnwood High School.
“It’s a great punctuation,” Lewis said. “State-champion individuals don’t come along real often. Last year our girls won the state title, and a lot of people kind of nudged me and said, ‘Hey, this is the best (year) to go out on.’
“But we had Harris and a couple seniors that had twisted my arm when they were freshman to stick around until they were done.”
Cutuk was thrilled to give Lewis one final state title, and he credited his coach for helping make it possible.
“The throw before (my winning mark), I was just working on my rotation on my hip the whole entire time, and I think that’s what helped me,” Cutuk said.
“Coach always said that if I’m not turning my hip, I’m not using my core. And so I just made that one of the biggest focuses of this whole entire year — use my hip, use my core. And it just happened.
“It just feels so relieving to make (this) his last memory before he goes into retirement,” Cutuk added. “I can’t describe the feeling. It’s just so amazing.”
Jackson’s Watkins caps career with state title
Matthew Watkins entered this weekend with the fourth-fastest 3,200 meters time in state history.
Now the Jackson senior can add a state title to his resume.
Watkins captured the first state championship of his career by winning the Class 4A boys 3,200 meters with a time of 9:16.09.
“It feels amazing,” Watkins said moments afterward. “It’s probably the happiest moment of my life.”
Watkins ran with the pack for the first half of the race before pulling away on the fifth lap and winning by more than eight seconds.
“I’ve tried (that strategy) before in a couple other races,” Watkins said. “It’s had success for me and it seemed like it’s been working out, so I feel like if I was going to win, that was how it was going to be.”
Watkins took third place in the 3,200 meters at last year’s state meet and placed second in last fall’s state cross-country meet.
He began this year’s state meet with another close call, placing second in Thursday’s 1,600 meters while finishing 0.64 seconds out of first place.
“To be so close to winning and be right there, to finally get (a state title) is just indescribable,” Watkins said.
Watkins ramped up his training after last fall’s cross country season and reaped the benefits this spring. Last month, he ran one of the fastest 3,200-meters times in state history with a personal-best 8:48.84 at the prestigious Arcadia Invitational near Los Angeles.
“After cross country, the focus was to come back and win the two-mile at state,” Watkins said. “So I buckled down this winter and got going. This whole season has been focused around doing this today.”
Shorewood’s Kirk defends his crown
Shorewood senior and University of Washington signee Devan Kirk claimed his second consecutive state title in the 3A boys 800 meters, winning by more than a second with a time of 1:53.59.
It capped a decorated high school career for Kirk, who finishes with four state medals in the 800 meters. Kirk placed eighth as a freshman and second as a sophomore before winning back-to-back titles.
Another close call for Lake Stevens’ Wallace
Lake Stevens senior Noah Wallace took second place in the 4A boys 800 meters with a time of 1:53.55, finishing 0.09 seconds behind state-champion Camas sophomore Daniel Maton.
Wallace also placed second in the 800 meters last year, when he finished 0.01 seconds behind the state champion.
Wallace ends his high school career with four top-five state medals in the 800 meters. He placed fourth as a freshman and fifth as a sophomore before earning back-to-back second-place finishes.