State track and field: 5 things to watch for local athletes at the 4A, 3A and 2A meets
The WIAA state 4A, 3A and 2A boys and girls track meets commence Thursday at Mt. Tahoma High School in Tacoma.
Dozens of Spokane-area athletes will push for a spot on the podium this weekend.
Here are five things to watch.
More Hutchinson sisters in 4A title hunt
It’s been six years since one of Mead’s decorated Hutchinson sisters won a state title in the 4A shot put or discus, but that drought could end soon.
Mead sophomore Jordynn Hutchinson won a District 8 title last week with a toss of 41 feet, 11 inches, a mark that ranks No. 1 in this weekend’s 4A field, per WIAA seeding.
Her freshman sister, Emily Hutchinson, could also medal this week in the shot put (40-11) and discus (126-06).
Their older siblings Corissa, Ashley and Courtney all won state shot put titles at Mead. Corissa also won a state discus title.
All three older sisters earned Division I track scholarships (New Mexico State, Wyoming and Boise State, respectively), but Corissa and Ashley first starred at Community Colleges of Spokane. The pair were inducted into the CCS Hall of Fame last year.
Courtney’s toss of 47-11 is the Greater Spokane League’s shot put record.
Barrera could win multiple titles for Mt. Spokane
Mt. Spokane senior and future Idaho sprinter and leaper Spencer Barrera has rarely been challenged this season in the 400.
He recorded a personal-best time of 48.8 seconds en route to a District 8 title last week, which is the top mark in this week’s field.
Barrera, who also ranks among the state’s best in the long jump (21-08) and triple (44-10), is the anchor leg on Mt. Spokane’s 1,600 relay team (3:24.52), which also holds the top-seeded time.
He placed second at state in the 400 last season, third in the long jump and sixth in the triple jump.
North Central girls aiming high again
District 8 3A girls co-champion North Central has the means to earn another state trophy.
The Indians, who finished second at state in 2018, feature the first- and third-best 1,600 and 3,200 runners in the 3A classification in sophomore Allie Janke and junior Erinn Hill.
NC’s Mia Hill and Marie Taylor also rank among the best in this week’s 3,200 field.
Janke, a defending state champion, has posted some of the top underclassmen marks in the country in the 1,600 (4:45.89) and 3,200 (10:20.60).
Janke, Erinn Hill, Mia Hill and Amelu Ruff are also on the Indians’ 1,600 relay (4:03.38) team that’s also expected finish in the top 3.
Adding to the Indians’ depth and potential point total is Elisa Tosetto, an Italian exchange student.
Tosetto won a 3A district long jump title (17-6) and also qualified for state in the high jump (5-2), finishing behind Mt. Spokane’s Katie Rhodes (5-6), the defending 3A state champion.
Can two-time defending champ Cheney still shine?
Graduation stung 2018 2A boys champion Cheney, and two of its better athletes are now wearing different colors.
Cole Omlin left Cheney for Ferris, and recently qualified for the 4A meet in the high jump, triple jump and long jump.
Zack Jongeward left Cheney for Central Valley, winning this year’s 4A GSL qualifying title in the 200.
But the Blackhawks still return enough talent to push for a state trophy if their key athletes finish high.
Camden VerStrate is ranked second in 2A in the 100 (10.65) and 200 (21.9), looking to become the latest Cheney speedster to stand atop the podium.
Jacob McGourin, who signed with Montana to play defensive end, had the second-best discus throw in the classification this season (188-11), which was also a Cheney record.
VerStrate and McGourin are also on Cheney’s state-qualifying 400 relay team (43.40).
Ryan Reikman also qualified for state last week in the javelin (169 feet), finishing second at districts.
Can LC girls catch speedy Tahoma?
Lewis and Clark’s girls sprinters were the class of District 8.
Sativa Rogers (12.05) won the 100. Samiah Kuntz (25.6) won the 200. Rogers and Kuntz also teamed up to win the district 400 relay (48.9) title and take second in the 800 relay (1:43.78).
Now the Tigers face the blazing speed of two-time defending 4A state champion Tahoma, one of the fastest teams on the West Coast.
Twin sisters and NCAA Division I signees Aliya Wilson (Kentucky) and Alisha Wilson (Oregon) pace Tahoma. Aliya (11.69-second 100-meter dash, 24.35 200-meter dash) anchors their top-ranked 400 relay (46.40).
LC finished fourth at state last year.