Skip to main content

Caleb Lakeman of Tualatin caps remarkable senior season with 1,500-3,000 double, athlete of the meet honors at 6A boys track championships

“I had a boost of confidence going into state. I knew I had done a lot of preparation.”

By René Ferrán | Photo by Taylor Balkom 

Caleb Lakeman might not have felt 100 percent physically when he stepped to the Hayward Field start line for Saturday’s Class 6A boys 1,500-meter final at the OSAA track and field championships in Eugene.

However, any residual fatigue the Tualatin senior felt dissipated with the confidence boost he’d received from his furious come-from-behind victory in Friday’s 3,000.

“There was a little less pressure because I won yesterday,” Lakeman said. “I knew I could have a chance to win. I just had to make it happen and do what I do.”

Again, he resisted the temptation to match the surge that Central Catholic’s Max Girardet made just as the pack hit the finish line the second time around the track.

Lakeman bided his time and stayed comfortably in fourth place as they rounded the corner, then burst into the lead as they entered the homestretch and held off Roosevelt junior William Heslam at the line to win in 3 minutes, 50.78 seconds.

“There’s always that fear that someone could come beside me and match my kick,” Lakeman said. “I’m always ready for that, but I’m also confident that I knew no one was going to match that move.”

Caleb Lakeman photo by Taylor Balkom

Lakeman, a Georgetown signee, also ran the anchor leg on Tualatin’s third-place 4x400 relay team that helped earn the Timberwolves the third-place team trophy and him athlete of the meet honors.

Entering the season, Lakeman was set on doubling in the 800 and 1,500, but when he won the Oregon Relays 3K in the fourth-fastest time in state history, he decided on the 1,500-3,000 double instead.

“I did the Oregon Relays as a fitness check, but once I won that, I thought maybe I have a chance to win the 3K rather than the 800,” Lakeman said. “I had a boost of confidence going into state. I knew I had done a lot of preparation.”

And with his wins this weekend, he finished the track season undefeated in his individual races. 

“Pretty amazing,” he said. “I didn’t think I could do it, but I made it happen. It’s pretty special.”

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