Another great day for Spokane athletes at the State 4A/3A/2A track meet. Despite brutal weather that had reporters whining like babies, the kids came through.
There’s way too much to go into, and what you’ll read on the link below is more than is going to be in Saturday’s paper, but, that’s the way it goes and no doubt Saturday will produce many more top performances from local athletes.
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After Corissa was a surprise winner in the shot put, Courtney got a shirt that said, “Future State Champion.”
That day came Friday when
“I love throwing in really bad weather,”
The key to beating the weather was mind over matter.
“I usually don’t do very good in rain,” Cheney senior DeAngelo Jones said. “Something coach (Todd) Herring was saying is you can’t control the weather but you can control your attitude … after he said that I had a better attitude coming out.”
All Jones did was win the 2A high jump and finish third in triple jump to go with Thursday’s long jump medal.
By the end of the day, when the rain had subsided, the Mead boys had put a stranglehold on their second straight team title. With A.J. Maricich clearing 7-feet to win his second high jump crown, Casey Monahan parlaying a perfect start into the 110-meter hurdle championship and Sam Wright adding a second in the discus to his shot put title, the Panthers have piled up 53 points, four more than they totaled last year. With a half-dozen possibilities today, they have a shot at the 81 points
The brutal weather postponed all three pole vault competitions with the 2A boys and girls scheduled for Pacific Lutheran University today, the 3A and 4A girls moved up and the 4A boys slotted in after the girls.
Like Corissa, Courtney won her title as a freshman, while Ashley won as a senior in 2007 with a school-record tying put of 43-8 – little sister’s next target.
“I was really nervous,”
“I was really excited,”
Maricich, who was third on misses last year after clearing 6-10 with Kasen Williams of Skyline and Rahmel Dockery of Curtis, was rarely challenged this season. That gave him plenty of opportunities to attack 7-feet, which he cleared at regionals last year when he described himself as a warm weather jumper.
“I kind of learned over the past year it doesn’t matter what the conditions are if you go out and compete, good things will happen,” he said. “All season I thought of Kasen Williams and Rahmel Dockery and knew I had to get after it.”
Maricich found inspiration in his teammates.
“Today it was just competing for that first place,” he said. “Before I jumped I would just think about Casey and Sam winning their events, Andrew’s race last night (freshman Gardner’s second in the 3,200). Kasen is a hell of a competitor.”
Williams had two near misses at making 7 for the first time, Dockery, a one-time 7-footer, finished in a three-way tie for third at 6-4 that included another Panther, Jeremy Beck. Maricich, who will jump at
“I wish I could have got 7-2 … the second one was there, I just had to be patient over the top,” he said. “I’ll be kicking myself about that one for a couple months. This felt better. The first time was just a surprise. This time because of the competition I had to get after it.”
Monahan was a close second to state leader Garrett Gerling of
“I had a couple of bad hurdles and I knew if I cleaned them up I could get him so I started believing,” he said. “I expected to be in contention. It’s all about the start and I had a really good start. This race I had to stay focused. I was thinking state championship the whole time.”
Wright was pleased, but not satisfied.
“It was about what I expected,” he said of his 167-2 throw in horrid conditions that left him 12½ feet behind Derek Eager of Tahoma, the state leader. “I can’t really complain too much but it wasn’t the best. I’m not happy (with second) but I’m not too sad about it. The distance could have been better but second place isn’t bad, Derek’s a good thrower.”
The two points he hoped the steal away with were picked up by the seventh-place finish of Seth Regalado.
“Placing as a sophomore, I didn’t even do that last year,” Wright said. “We scored 20 points in the shot and discus. I’m going to try to get warm and watch my teammates.”
The other notable efforts were a second by Levi Taylor of Lewis and Clark in the triple jump and a second and third by Ferris teammates Natalie Kyllo and Alexa Lindseth in the discus.
Kyllo, second fiddle to Lindseth all year, had quite a finish to her season to improve on a seventh-place finish while keeping Lindseth from a second-straight silver.
“The weird thing is each of my last throws was an ending throw, to make it here, to make it to the finals and this one was my last throw,” she said after going a personal record of 132-8, 4½ feet behind Jessica Bush of Eisenhower. “I’m glad to get second, first would be better. I’m glad I had a good throw to end it on.”
It was a quiet day, although Luke Evans picked up eight points in the javelin to give North Central 18 points in its quest for a fourth-straight team title. He threw 178-4 for second.
“I knew I could have gone way farther,” he said. “I just couldn’t keep the javelin straight today. The wind and cold was a factor on everything today.”
The problem was he was well shy of his 3A best 197-10, and disappointing because eight-seeded Tanner Lien of
“It surprised me but I was confident because I had thrown that far. It just didn’t turn out the best,” said Evans, who expects better in the high ump today, “unless it’s going to be like this tomorrow. If it’s like this tomorrow it’s going to be hard but all I can do is do my best.”
Jones was eighth in the long jump, third in the triple jump and didn’t make it in the high jump last year.
“I can’t really explain what happened, I was just off my game in the triple jump,” he said. “I did better than I did in my all events last year.”
And a win is satisfying.
“To be honest, I knew my PR (6-6) was up there but I didn’t think I’d be a state champ in it,” he said. “I thought my best chance was triple jump. I definitely wasn’t expecting to be a high jump champion.
“I was thinking 6-6 would place me pretty well, just come out and compete, and I’ll do fine. I guess I did good enough. I’m definitely OK with that. Even in good weather, or if it’s snowing, I’ll take that.”
Defending champion Tasha Luu of
“I haven’t had a good season,” she said, focusing more on the long jump.
Another sophomore, Jennifer Nakata of
“I stayed consistent throughout the season,” she said. “There were five girls out there who had gone 5-4 this season and none of us could get it. I don’t want to blame the weather but the weather was definitely part of it, so I’m happy with the jumps I jumped today. It wasn’t the best day to jump on.”
Nakata was closing fast in the 100 hurdles, sitting second when she hit one of the last ones hard and limped to an eighth place finish, picking up her medal while on crutches.