Colfax senior Scout Cai wants to conclude her high school track and field career as a four-event state champion.
The three-sport standout is grateful to be in position to do so.
“It’s in my reach but the competition is really good,” Cai said.
After starting on Colfax’s state championship volleyball team last fall despite a fracture in her back, Cai was poised to start in basketball when her body told her it needed a break.
Her feet started hurting her.
“I was having a stress reaction in my heels,” Cai said.
Cai discovered she had a vitamin deficiency.
“She’s been going, going, going since she was young and her body was telling her to take a break,” track coach Jason Cooper said.
Cai took the balance of the basketball season off, allowing her body time to heal.
“I felt 100 percent going into the track season,” Cai said.
She’s extended her personal bests in the 100 and 200 meters and pole vault while equaling her best in the high jump.
Cai lowered her 100 time from 12.48 seconds to 12.26, equaled her best in the high jump (5 foot, 4 inches) and increased her mark in the pole vault (12-3) last weekend at the 2B Regional meet.
Her best in the 200 is 25.80.
“My personal bests have improved a lot,” Cai said.
Cai will be out to lower them more at the state meet this weekend at Eastern Washington University’s Roos Field.
“She’s as strong and fast as she’s ever been,” Cooper said.
Cai has had to balance practice time in her sprints and jumps.
“I only let her jump (pole vault) about five times all out in practice each week,” Cooper said. “If you start doing extra jumps you get tired and start losing form and purpose. And we haven’t done as much high jump as we have in the past. I can’t imagine what she’ll do when she gets to college and can focus on training.”
Cooper has Cai working on speed work more than anything. Ultimately, it benefits her jumping based on her approach to the high jump pit and speed down the pole vault runway.
“She puts herself in position to get better without me saying mix it up,” Cooper said.
It didn’t take long for Cai to enjoy success at state meets.
As a freshman, she took second in the pole vault and sixth in the high jump. As a sophomore, she captured gold in the vault, second in high jump and fifth each in the 100 and 200. Last spring, she won the vault and high jump.
Headed to state she ranks first in the 100, 200 and vault and tied for first in the high jump.
She has signed to continue track at Seattle Pacific University where she hopes to be a heptathlete while spending extra time with her favorite event, the vault.
Cai, who has a chance to leave Colfax with three school records, definitely wants four state titles, but more as a means to an end. She wants to help Colfax capture a team title as it did when she was a sophomore.
“The biggest piece is her commitment to the team as a whole,” Cooper said. “She’s always willing to do anything. She supports all of her teammates.”
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