West Central District Championships: Day One
The first day of the West Central District Track Championships got kicked off today at French Field on the campus of Kent-Meridian High School.
Action started in the field events with two freshmen competing in the men’s high jump. After clearing 6’ at the SPSL League Championships, Hugo Ntanda and KJ Saunders knew it would take another good day to have a shot at qualifying for the state meet. Hugo cleared 6’ to match his lifetime best from the week prior, but he did so on his third attempt, and subsequently lost out on going to state based on a tie-breaker. It was still a great way to cap off an awesome freshman season. While Hugo flew through the opening heights and struggled at 6’, KJ did the opposite, struggling at earlier heights but ultimately rallying to nab two lifetime bests, first at 6’2” and then again at 6’3” to improve upon his freshmen school record, finish second at the WCD Championships, and secure a spot at the State Championships next week at Mt. Tahoma.
Also in the field events, Jonah Mains continued to show why he is one of the best throwers in the state. Mains battled throughout the competition and ultimately finished second overall in a crowded field of throwers. While he was hoping to come out with a district championship, he has some big throws left in him, and we are excited to see him make his first appearance at the state track meet (after qualifying this past winter in wrestling).
Events on the track got started for the Jags in the 110/100 hurdles. First, Jarin Watson stumbled a bit to the first hurdle and was unable to regain the form that catapulted him to the district meet, but it was a huge accomplishment for Jarin to even qualify for this meet, and he now sits in the top-10 all-time at Emerald Ridge with his mark from last week’s SPSL Championships. For the women, Karlee Stueckle represented the Jags by winning her heat in the 100 hurdles and finishing second overall. She will attempt to defend her state title in this event next week at Mt. Tahoma.
Next up on the track was freshman Roz Slichko. Knowing she was facing a tough field, she battled the entire race as she attempted to stay out of trouble and in the lead pack of eight women that were all gunning for the seven qualifying spots in the women’s 1600 meters. Roz raced her heart out, and it took all seven women in front of her to run lifetime bests for Roz to be denied a spot, finishing in eighth; she will be the first alternate from our district, and she will be joined by her teammate Emily Wells on Saturday in an attempt to qualify in the women’s 3200 meters.
Last up was sophomore Sophia Brown, competing in the women’s 400 meters. One of only three sophomores in the field, Sophia raced to a lifetime best of 61.80. While she did not qualify for state in the open 400, she is poised to run a great leg on our women’s 4x400 team that is looking to improve upon their fourth place state ranking heading into the weekend.
Field events get started at 10:00AM on Saturday morning with running events kicking off at 11:30.