We are the (Aurora) champions…Cherokee Trail’s Jaiden Paris, Taylor Watson, Aumni Ashby & Symonne Holland (5A 4×200 relay)

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Cherokee Trail senior Symonne Holland raises her hand after crossing the finish line as the Cougars won the girls 4×200 meter relay state championship at the Class 5A state track meet on May 20, 2016, at Jefferson County Stadium. Holland ran the anchor leg on a relay that also included sophomores Jaiden Paris, Taylor Watson and Aumni Ashby that turned in Colorado’s top time in the event of 1 minute, 39.71 seconds. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Aurora Sentinel)

AURORA | City teams and athletes won a combined four team championships and 12 individual events in final weeks of the 2016 spring prep sports season. Here’s a look at one of Aurora’s individual state event winners, the Cherokee Trail Class 5A girls state track champion 4×200 meter relay team of sophomores Jaiden Paris, Taylor Watson and Aumni Ashby and senior Symonne Holland:

Courtney Oakes is Aurora Sentinel Sports Editor. Reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. FB: Aurora Prep Sentinel

From left, the Cherokee Trail girls 4x200 meter relay team of sophomores Aumni Ashby and Taylor Watson, senior Symonne Holland and sophomore Jaiden Paris pose with the state championship medals they won in the event at the Class 5A state track meet on May 20, 2016, at Jefferson County Stadium. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Aurora Sentinel)
From left, the Cherokee Trail girls 4×200 meter relay team of sophomores Aumni Ashby and Taylor Watson, senior Symonne Holland and sophomore Jaiden Paris pose with the state championship medals they won in the event at the Class 5A state track meet on May 20, 2016, at Jefferson County Stadium. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Aurora Sentinel)

CHEROKEE TRAIL’S JAIDEN PARIS, TAYLOR WATSON, AUMNI ASHBY & SYMONNE HOLLAND: 5A GIRLS 4X200 METER RELAY STATE CHAMPIONS

On the second day of the Class 5A state track meet at Jefferson County Stadium, the foursome of sophomores Jaiden Paris, Taylor Watson and Aumni Ashby and Symonne Holland, one of just a handful of seniors on the Cherokee Trail team, dominated the event they’d hope to win all season long. The fun-loving foursome put together by Cougars’ head coach Chris Faust credited their significant bond on and off the track and teamwork for their success, traits that helped them overcome some shaky handoffs at times.

Cherokee Trail sophomore Aumni Ashby, front, takes over after getting the baton from sophomore Taylor Watson during the Cougars' win in the 5A girls 4x200 meter relay on May 20, 2016, at Jefferson County Stadium. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Aurora Sentinel)
Cherokee Trail sophomore Aumni Ashby, front, takes over after getting the baton from sophomore Taylor Watson during the Cougars’ win in the 5A girls 4×200 meter relay on May 20, 2016, at Jefferson County Stadium. (Photo by Courtney Oakes/Aurora Sentinel)

The Cherokee Trail group won the Centennial League championship in the event by just .01 of a second over Overland, but didn’t find anybody to challenge it quite like that at state. The Cougars came into the state meet with the top seed time in the event of 1 minute, 41.33 seconds (set on the same Jefferson County track during cold conditions at the Pomona Invitational April 15), and they bettered it in the May 19 prelims (1:40.59) and then again in the May 20 finals with a 1:39.71 — the top time in Colorado in any classification in 2016 — that brought them across the finish line well before runner-up Arapahoe (1:41.80). Holland returned from a 4×200 team that came in second behind Pine Creek in the previous season, while she and Paris and Watson, plus sophomore Sydnee Larkin, collected another state championship a day later in the much tighter 4×100 meter relay. Paris also placed in both of the hurdles events, Watson grabbed a podium spot in the 100 meter dash and Ashby finished second behind Larkin in the triple jump.