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April 14, 1962

Two Yakina Valley district track records were bettered, two others were equaled and Eisenhower won the team trophy at the first running of the Pasco Invitaional Track and Field Meet yesterday at Pasco Memorial Stadium.

A large crowd watched athletes from eight Valley schools better district and stadium marks in the 880 yard run and javelin, and two Richland youths equal district and Memorial Stadium high school records in the 100 yard dash and field times of the season.

Perfect weather helped entrants form eight schools turn in some of the best track and field times of the season.

Eisenhower was first with 55 points. Kennewick, getting outstanding performances from its runners, won both relay events to finish second with 45 points. Pasco was third with 42 points. Dale Stovall of Toppenish and Stan Emerick of West Valley shared individual honors with Richland's Ron Mitchell and Dave Simpson.

Stovall ran the 880 in 1:59.9, beating Pasco's Tom Egan. It was Egan's first defeat in 880 competition. George Stimack of Cle Elum set the record of 2:02.2 in 1947. Stovall's time erased the Pasco Memorial Stadiun time of 2:02.6 set last week by Egan Egan posted a 2:00.5 time yesterday, the best of his career.

Emerick, who has thrown the javelin 208 feet, 7 inches this season, heaved the spear 190-11 yesterday bettering the district mark of 190-1-and a half set in 1956 by John Douglas of Wapato.

The efforts of Emerick and Stovall won't officially be recognized as district records. District records can only be set in the district Championship, meet in May.

Mitchell set the crowd to buzzing with his 10-flat effort in the century. It was a thrilling race, with Fred Bieber of Kennewick second with a 10.05 clocking, and Bruce Jacobs of Kennewick third with 10.1. Mitchell's century mark equaled both the stadium and district records.

Simpson, who has added one foot to his broad jump in each of his last two meets, sailed 21 feet, 10 inches yesterday to equal previous stadium and district performances. Simpson jumped 21-10 twice, and in none of his jumps went under the 21 district mark.

Kennewick nosed out Pasco for second place with its two relay victories. Both relay times were within two seconds of existing records. Gary VanDinter, Pasco's outstanding junior miler, caught Steve Scruggs of Walla Walla on the second lap and had the track to himself as he posted a 4:35.6. Only double winner was Eisenhower's Bill Roe, who took first in both hurdles.



April 14, 1963

The sun and the dustless weather at Pasco Stadium proved a boon to the second annual Pasco Invitational Track and Field Meet and the athletes showed their appreciation by establishing eight meet records and five stadium marks before a small, enthusiastic crowd.

Eisenhower of Yakima ran off with the team trophy, almost doubling the output of the Lewis & Clark Tigers from Spokane. The Cadets got 61 points to win, Davis of Yakima 45, L&C 35, Pasco and Walla Walla 26, Richland 21, Wapato 9, and Kennewick 2.

The record assault started from the first when Bill Roe, the tall Ike hurdler, went 14.4 in the high sticks. That was exactly one second better than his winning record time last year, in the meet's inaugural. It also broke the stadium record of 15.2, held by him and two others. Later Roe won the low hurdles in 19.6, again setting two records. Jack Glover of Richland held the old mark of 20.5, set back in 1960. But there was more to come.

Another double winner was undefeated Wilson Kerns, the short sprinter from Walla Walla who won the 100 and 220 and paced the Blue Devil half-mile relay foursome to a first place for 11 1/4 points and high individual honors of the day.

Roe's 880-relay quartet ran second, so he finished up with 11 points and it was an anchor lap by Kerns that won it for Wa-Hi. He took the baton about five yards behind and won in the last foot by a fraction of an inch. Behind Roe in both hurdles came teammate Dale Sunitsch and Barry Fancher of L&C. J.W. Brown of Davis finished second in both dashes.

Another Brown of the Pirates, Pete, ran a stadium-record mile, winning in 4:30.9, bettering the 4:34 of Gary VanDinter, set in last year's inaugural. Spokane's Lonnie Hallett got a field record in the 440, the 50.2 bettering the 51.1 by Les Rucker of Davis, set in 1960.

Pasco's Lonnie Fricke threw the discus 151-10 for records. The old Memorial Stadium mark was by Ralph Winters of Ike, 146-6 1/2 in 1961. One record was also tied, the pole vault. Paul Adams of Ike went 12-11 3/4. The old mark was by Chuck Blakley of Pendleton in a 1962 triangular. Meet records were in the shot, by Ted Spearman of Davis, 53-11, in the 220 by Kerns in 22.2, in the 880 by Leonard kunz of Davis in 2:02.3.

Coach Ron Wells got points also from Brian Kilbury, Mike Bernard, Larry Richwine, Mike Burke, Tom Egan, Willie Orange. Both relay teams were fourth and Fricke finished third in the shot for eight points. Coach Art Dawald's Richland Bombers with points were Joe Evans, a fifth and two fourths, Jim Steckline, third and fifth, Larry Gross, Dave Simpson and George Barnett. Simpson won this round of his duel with Kilbury in the broad jump by a half inch. Barnett won the high jump in 5-10 3/4.

Kennewick got only two points, by the mile relay team (when L&C was disqualified for a late pass) and by Dennis Calvin in the pole vault for Dick Bona. The Cadets were blanked in only three events, mile, 100 and 880, with Davis losing out in two, L&C in four, Pasco in four.



April 4, 1964

The Eisenhower Cadets are not only still great, they're getting better. The Yakima track powwerhouse won its third straight title in the Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Memorial Stadium yesterday, scoring 66 1/2 points to swamp cross-town rival Davis and the others in the eight-team field. After Ike, the remainder of the entries were fairly even. Coach Don Holden's Cadets won the first meet by 10 points over Kennewick. Last year they won by 15 points from Davis. The margin this time was 22 1/2 points.

Individual performances were lower than expected because of the dust-blowing wind. At times it was hard for the runners to even see the finish line, much less reach it in record time.

One star lived up to advance billing, although he fell considerably short of earlier performances. Carl O'Donnell, Wenatchee's javelin ace, heaved the spear 196 feet, 10 inches, almost six feet farther than the old mark but 19 feet short of his season's best. It was also a stadium record.

That was one of the four records set. One of those was in a new event, the two-mile run, with Pasco's Carl Kinion winning in 10:30.2, also a school record.

The other two marks were in field events. Ted Spearman, Davis, only returning record-holder from the assault of 1963 when eight marks were bettered, did it again in the shot put. He pushed the iron ball 54 feet, 6 1/4 inches. Jim Windell, Port Vancouver, threw the discus 153 feet, 1/2 inch, beating a mark held by Pasco's Lon Fricke.

Behind Yakima in team points came Pasco 30 1-3, Richland 26, Kennewick 24 1-3, Wenatchee 17 1-3, Fort Vancouver 16 1/2, Walla Walla 15.

There was no double winners. Ike took four firsts in individual events, tied for another and won one relay. The Cadets also won five second places and were second in the other relay. They got points in all but two events. High individual was Dale Sunitsch, Ike hurdler who won the lows, was second in the highs and ran a leg on the winning 880-yard relay team for 9 1/4 points. Bob Turner, Davis sophomore had 9 points. Davis won three events and tied for one, Kennewick won 2 and a tie, Pasco one and a relay, Walla Walla, Wenatchee and Fort Vancouver one each.

Evans was nipped at the tape by Russac in the 220 by "sticking out his chest further," as the judge called. Pasco's Tom Egan was ahead at the end of one lap, then looked back near the end and lost by a yard in the 880 to Bob Bullis, Kennewick in good time for a windy day.



April 17, 1965

The Borah Lions of Boise walked away with the team championship and seven new records were written into the books Saturday in the sun-kissed fourth annual Pasco Invitational Trophy Track and Field Meet at Pasco Stadium.

The Lions, setting two new records in the process, won five first-place trophies and amassed 67 1/2 points. Lewis-Clark finished second with 62 points, followed by Eisenhower 52 3/4. The balanced field produced no double winners, but nevertheless were some outstanding individual efforts. High-point honors went to Borah's Jim Cafferty with 12 points on a victory in the high hurdles, second in the lows and third in the broad jump. Ike's Steve Dale totalled 10 points.

Eisenhower won five firsts and shared a record-setting tie for first in the pole vault. Lewis-Clark won four firsts while Richland and West Valley each managed one.

Most impressive of the new records was by Borah discus-thrower Rich Smith. He hurled the platter 168 feet, 3 inches, shattering the old record by 15 feet. Kennewick's Howard Roth was second with a toss of 149 feet, 1 1/2 inches.

Richland's Fred Milton was the lone Tri-City winner and record setter, winning the shot put with a heave of 55-11 1/2. Three others-Gary Bills of Borah, Roth and Terry Antles of Eisenhower-also eclipsed the previous mark of 54-6 1/4, set last year by Ted Spearman of Davis. Bills edged Roth for the runnerup spot by one-half inch with a 55-3 effort.

Eisenhower's Dave Cook posted the Valley's top effort in thev pole vault as he and Lewis-Clark's Bill Devine finished at 13-3 1/4. Pete Remillard of Richland and Ken Privratsky of LC tied for third at 12-9 and Jim Repp, Pasco, cleared 12-6.

The other individual effort was a 9:49.4 clocking in the two-mile LC's Larry Marker. Tim Ohlund of Eishenhower set the pace most of the way, but succumbed to Marker's strong finish in the final 300 yards. Ohlund was clocked in 9:53.5- best time in the Valley this spring.

Borah shaved 8-10ths of a second off the 880 relay record set in 1962 by Kennewick, posting a 1:31.1 finish on the running of Bob Barclay, Don Bradley, Jim Owsley and Dave Rolfe.

Lewis- Clark getting 52-seconds efforts from Tom Keasal and Jim Stephans, erased the mile relay record with a 3:31.6 finish wiping out another 1962 Kennewick mark. Richland was a respectable second in 3:34.5.

The other record was Eisenhower's "laugher" win in the fat man's relay. The Cadets anchored by basketball star Terry Nicholls, closed in 46.1, more than two seconds off the record set by the Cadets in 1964.

Among the top Tri-City efforts were Bob Schaaf's 15.0 clocking in the 120 high hurdles prelim-he finished second to Cafferty in the finals. Richlander Bruce Kasey had a 2:03 effort in placing second in the 880 yard run.



April 16, 1966

Rick Riley, a l22-pound package of stanina from Spokane, turned in one of the greatest individual efforts in interscholastic track history Saturday to steal the spotlight at th;e fifth annual Pasco Invitaional Track and Field Meet.

Riley, running for Coach Herm Caviness' Ferris High School aggregation, covered the two-mile in 9:01.0, third best performance in that grueling event in prep track annals.

Riley's remarkable performance, bearing more resemblance to a quater-miler than an eight-lapper, won most of individual accolades, but didn't completely overshadow a great team victory for the Eisenhower cadets.

Coach Don Holder's Cadets, by sprinters Tom Amos and Bob Cooper and a brilliant double win by; hurdler Jim Dale, piled up 59 points to out distance Riley and Ferris with 40 1/2.

Pasco, which got a fine l2-point effort from jumping-jack Phil Kisro and upset win by Rich James over Fred Milton in the discus, tied Richland for third, each with 33. John Rogers had 32 1/2, Kennewick 21, Mercer Island l2 and Walla Walla 9.

Kirso won individual scoring honors with l2 points, setting a new mark of 6- 1 1/4 in ;the high jump, running second in high hurdles in l5.0 and taking third in the broad jump with 20- 10 1/2.

Dale tu;rned in the state's best time to date in the high hurdleses with a spectacular l4.6 clocking, then won the lows in 20.25, despite slightly losing his timeing when he hit the next-to-last hurdle.

Riley, one of several Spokane prepsters who have achieved stardom as distance runners since Gerry Lindgren popularized that pahse of track with his heroic, won the state two-mile last spring at Pullman in 9:11.1 and he proved yesterday that he can have the title again this time if he elects to enter the eight-lapper.

The stubby senoir moved out ahead of the pack at the outset yesterday and never looked back. By the time he had completed his record-setting race, he had lapped all but about four of the entries. Stiffer competition probably ould have put him under the nini-minute mark. Second was Steve Rodgers, 39 seconds behind Riley.

The national interscholastic record is 8:56.2 set two years ago by Lindgren, racing for John Rogers, in a meet at Central Balley in Spokane. Jim Ryan, Wilcox, Calif., is the only other prepster to better Riley's effort. Ryan ran about 8:58 two years ago, also.

Besides the new records for Riley and Kisro, the 880-yard record fell when Rogers' Fred Lake toured the oval in 1:59.3, shaving 6-10ths of a second off the old mafk. Also broken was the mile record of 4:30.9. Bill Longford, Rogers, ran 4:25.5 as three entries bettered the old mark. Joe Ross, Ferris ran second in 4:28.9 and Dennis Kilbury, Pasco, finished in 4:29.9.

Milton won the shot put with mediocre 54-9 1/4 showing, then failed to approach his top form in the discus, hitting only 147-2 compared to James' all-time best of 148-5 1/2, good enough for first-place honors.

Other Richlan winners were Robbie Williams, who ran the 880 in 51.55, and broad-jumper Steve Jech, who cleared 21-3 to outduel a highly touted field. Richland also won the nonscoring fat man's relay on Milton's strong anchor leg.

Besides close finishes in the dashed, the closest race of ;the day was the mile relay, when Skip Wallace spurted agead in the final five yards to give the Blue Devils first place in 3:34.2. Ike won the 880 relay in respectable 1:32.9. Jerry Carpenter, Eisenhower, turned in the state second best effort in winning the javelin with a heave of 189-6.



April 15, 1967

Hurdler Dick Olsen of Spokane's John Rogers and Richlander Rob Williams led an assault on the record books at the sixth annual Pasco Invitational Track and Field Meet Saturday, but the Eisenhower's Cadets walked off with the team championship. Olsen and Williams established the best marks in the state this season in three events and broke records in the process. Three other records also were wiped out in the annual eight-team classic. Eisenhower took the team championship with 55 1/2 points while Richland nipped Pasco for second, 41-40 1/2. The Dalles totaled 30 for fourth.

Olsen streaked in a preliminary victory in the high hurdles in 14.3 seconds, breaking the old mark of 14.4 held by Bill Roe of Eisenhower, then came back to to win by a full second in 14.6. He also eclipsed the meet record in the lows with a 19.3 victory, cracking Roe's old record of 19.4.

Williams, the talented Richland senior, won the 440 in 50 seconds flat, best of the year in state prep ranks. He broke the record of 50.2 set four years ago by Jim Hallet of Lewis-Clark. The other records broken yesterday were by Eisenhower's Dick Duncan, who streaked to victory in the 880 in 1:56.5; Ferris' Joe Ross, who turned in an impressive 4:20.0 clocking in the mile and a 21-11 1/2 leap by The Dalles' Luther Goin in the broad jump.

Duncan, who broke the 1:59.3 record held by Rogers' Fred Lake in the 880 was chased to victory by Richland's George Kinney, who set a new school record with his second place finish in 1:58.4. Dick Prugh, Ferris, failed in his bid for a new pole vauld record, winning in 12-10. Pasco sophomore Dave True was second with his career best of 12-6.

Pasco's Rich James won his specialty-the discus-as expected, but was six feet off the meet record, reaching 162-0. James also was third in the shot. Pasco's Tony Dedmond, who earlier had registered a 9.8 clocking, whipped Ike's Bob Cooper with a 10.1 effort in the 100. Dedmond later ran second to Cooper in a 22.3 clocking in the 220. Dedmond also anchored Pasco's near-record-setting 880 relay squad, winning in 1:32.7.



April 13, 1968

The Richland Bombers captured the team trophy in the Pasco Invitational Track and Field Meet Saturday, edging the host Bulldogs 51-46, in the process. It was the first win for Richland in the seven-year history of the meet. Placing close behind the two Tri-Cities teams were Ferris of Spokane with 39, Capital of Boise 36 and John Rogers of Spokane with 30.

A crowd of several hundred watche the record field of 16 teams from three states vie for points in 21 events. The turning point in the meet probably came in the 880 relay. Until this event, Pasco had a narrow lead over the Bombers. Hudson's Bay and Davis had the fastest clockings in the 880 relay with Richland third. The Bombers were awarded first, and more important six big points, after Hudson's Bay and Davis were disqualified for rule infractions.

Records were set in three events and tied in another. The record that pleased the hometown crowd the most was David True's 13-4 1/2 inch leap in the pole vault. The Pasco vaulter beat out Dave Gregory of Richland and snapped the 13-3 1/2 record set by Cooke of Eisenhower in 1966. True saved his record-setting vault for the final moments of the meet after all other events had been completed. The crowd roared its approval as he cleared the record height. Gregory missed on his three attempts at the mark.

Wayne Sepolen of Ferris, one of the state's best long-jumpers, leaped 22-1 1/2 inches to top the previous record of 21-11 1/2 set last year by Goin of The Dalles. Hudson Bay's 440 relay team swept to a 44 flat victory to shave a full second off the previous mark established by Pasco last year.

Larry Gonclaves, Ferris' flashy sprinter, one of two double winners, equalled the 100-yard dash mark of 10 flat. Gonclaves tied the mark in the preliminary heat and came back with a10.35 to win the finals. He tied the mark set by Ron Mitchell of Richland in 1962. Gonclaves also swept the 220 with a 22.6 clocking.

Leonard Filaseta of The Dalles was the other double winner, taking the shot put and the discus. He uncorked a 55-6 7/8 inch heave with the shot, just four inches short of the meet record set by Fred Milton of Richland in 1965, and won the discus with a toss of 153-2 1/4.

The winning Bombers took five first places to Pasco's four, followed by Rogers with 3. Richland won the two-mile,330 intermediate hurdles, 880 relay, mile relay, and the fat man's relay. The fat man's event was a non-counting affair. Pasco showed surprising strength in the jumping events taking first in the triple jump, high jump and the pole vault as well as the medley relay.

Three records were established in new events for the meet, the triple jump, medley relay and the 330 intermediate hurdles. Ron Howard, Pasco sophomore, hopped, stepped and jumped to a 42-8 3/4 record in the triple jump. The Bulldogs raced to a 8:00.5 mark in the medley relay and Pat Maki, Richland the 300 intermediate hurdles with a 41.6 clocking.



April 20, 1969

A gale from the West and a whirlwind from the East were the dominant forces yesterday in the eighth annual Pasco Invitational High School Track Meet. Both scored easy victories. Out of the West came daylong winds that gusted to 50 miles an hour. They heckled the crowd at Pasco Stadium, bothered the competitors and held down the times. But they did not hold back the visitor from the East, Borah of Boise. The Idaho team won nine events to easily outdistance Richland, the defending meet champion, and take home the first place trophy.

Despite the winds, six records fell and two were tied. Borah had won the meet championship once before, four years ago. It is the defending Idaho state champ. Aside from the team struggle, several individual confrontations highlighted the meet.

Richland's John Blalock, after coasting to victory in the mile, suffered his first defeat of the season when Randy James of Ferris beat him in a stirring two-mile.

Pasco's Stan Lepka again defeated Hudson's Bay Larry Luehrs, the defending state champion in the high jump, but each had to settle for a best clearance of 6 feet 2 1/2 inches. Still, that bettered the meet mark.

Other meet records were broken by Pat Maki, who broke his own in the 330-yard intermediate hurdles; Ron Howard of Pasco, who broke his triple-jump mark, and by three relay teams-Borah in the 440, Hudson's Bay in the 880 and John Rogers in the mile.

Two Borah boys equaled meet marks. Bob Griffin, who won the low hurdles and placed second to Mark Wooden of Mercer Island in the highs, tied one with a long jump of 22-1 1/2, his best ever. Eric Wadsworth loped to an easy 50.0 win in the 440. Wooden equaled his fastest time ever in winning the highs in 14.9, into what then was just a slight wind. He also placed second in the lows, second in the long jump and fifth in the triple jump.

James and Blalock ran in the worst weather of the day, with dust swirling all over the track. Randy, a junior but already the state's cross country champion, set the pace with Blalock on his shoulder. John grabbed the lead at the start of the final lap. "I thought I had him at that point," Blalock said later. "But I knew he wouldn't drop back; I knew that it would be close right to the finish."

It was. James fell back by five yard, then caught up again and passed Blalock on the final turn as both tried to fight off the wind in their faces. John, on the inside, got back to even but a spurt by James in the final 20 yards gave him the win. Blalock's time of 9:19.7 was his fastest ever.

The most startling finish to a race was in the rarely-run 330 hurdles. Howard grabbed a big lead. Maki, far back early, was still five yards behind with one hurdle left. But Ron stumbled at the finala hurdle, nearly fell and Maki scooted home first, breaking hjis meet record by a second and a half. Howard jumped 43-5 to beat the field by 2 1/2 feet in the triple jump.



April 18, 1970

Pasco's Ron Howard gave a marvelous display of power hurdling and Walla Walla won the team championship by half a point-yet the star of yesterday's Pasco Invitational track meet was Randy James, a spindle-legged distance runner from Spokane. The Ferris High School senior had been here before-he lost the two mile run two years ago, then won it by a step last year. This year, he nearly lapped the field.

Randy fought through the chilly winds and ran two miles in 9.05.5. It is the fastest time in the state so far this season(by 13.5 seconds) and unofficially the second-fastest time in the nation this year. The time, remarkably, was not a meet record. The record is 9:00.1 set by Rick Riley of Ferris in 1966.

"Randy ran pretty hard yesterday," said Herm Caviness, the Ferris Coach. "But I had given him the week off, so I felt he would be ready for a pretty good time. Still, I'm pleased by the way he ran today." On Friday, he ran the 880, the mile and two mile in a dual meet.

Yet from the very start, James appeared hungry for a good time. He ran his first half-mile in 2:14, passed the first mile in 4:32, "he had a slow sixth lap," Caviness said, "but he came back strong in the seventh. And I was amazed at his speed on the last lap-62seconds, which is great for Randy."

Randy's runaway was one of the few events of the day that was not close. The closest of all, it turned out, was the team scoring: Walla Walla grabbing places everywhere, edged Pasco 37.5-37. Howard got Pasco that close singlehandedly scoring 24 points. Howard was named the Outstanding Athlete for the meet; the first time this award was made.

He crushed a good field in the high hurdles, running 15.0 into a stiff wind; he simply powered through the tough 330 intermediate hurdles and beat the field by a second; he won the triple jump, for the third straight time in this meet, at 42-9 1/4, and he ended the long day by getting nipped in the low hurdles by Walla Walla's Dave Bateman.

Pasco had other heroes, most notably quartermiler Noble Johnson, who gutted his way to victory in the open 440 in 51.2, diving to the tape to beat Barry Sartz of Shadle Park. Noble also ran a super anchor leg in the mile relay, but it was not enough to get the Bulldogs fifth place-which would have meant one-point, and the team title. Rusty Wiseman of the Bulldogs got a surprising second in the discus behind Wenatchee's Oscar Nelson, who swept the discus and shotput.

Richland had many disappointments but still scraped up 30 points for third place. The Bombers had just one victory, by Jim Qualheim who long jumped 20-6 into the winds. Kennewick got sixth with 26 points, some of those coming from Nelse Petermann in the hurdles, Mike Thurman with a personal-best 2:01.6 for third in the 880 and Nick Piccoli with a good 187-1 javelin win.

Wenatchee and Moses Lake showed surprising strength. Moses Lake won the 440 and 880 relays with the same team of Dave Kangar, Eric Johnson, Bob Kirkwood and Keith Hinman, and placed fourthg in the scoring. Wenatchee got two places from Bob Martin in the hurdles, Nelson's two wins and scored 24 points.

Richland got just fifth-place finishes from Mike Weiggands in the 880, Jerry Rice in the mile and Qualheim in the low hurdles. But sprinter Dan Vache came through with a second and a third and Steve Curd took a second to James in a personal best of 9:45.7. Junior Greg Mitchell got a surprising fourth in the intermediates.



April 17, 1971

About 2,000 persons saw five meet records fall in the 16-team Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Edgar Brown Stadium yesterday. A strong Gonzaga Prep team won the 10th annual running of the classic, scoring 47 points. The Richland Bombers, led by the outstanding double performance of distance ace Jerry Rice, finished second with 38 points and Pasco was third with 31.

Al Bergman of West Valley, winner of 100 (10.2) and 220(22.4) yard dashes, was named the outstanding athlete in the meet by a vote of the coaches. He also anchored the second place 880 yard relay team.

In the girls' competition Columbia River edged Walla Walla 26 1/2 to 25 for first place. Kennewick and Pasco wound up fourth and fifth with 7 1/2 and 5 points respectively. Records were established in each of the five events in this first running of the girls' meet.

Gonzaga's men's team was paced by two individual firsts and three relay wins, but several Tri-Cities also made their presence felt. Rice won the mile for Richland with a fine 4:25.8 coming back a few hours later to run a clutch second in the grueling two mile event. Richland Coach Max Jensen praised the senior strider saying, "He was really hurting after running the first half of the two mile in 4:44, but he hung on to score those second place points. Rice was beaten by Larry Thibault of Shadle Park who clocked a 9:30 flat to Rice's 9:40.7.

Pasco's super soph, Rayford Guice, broke the meet record in the high jump, recording a 6-3 3/4. He was one of the busier men at the meet, hurrying back and forth between the triple jump and high jump pits and running in two relays. He finished third in the triple jump with a 41-7 1/2.

Other records were broken by Newport with a 7:55 in the medley relay, by Gonzaga with a 1:31.8 in the 880 yard relay and a 3:29.8 in the mile relay and by Rick Lobdell of Gonzaga in the pole vault (14 feet). One of the top races of the day was the 330 yard intermediate hurdles where the first five finishes were clocked less than .7 seconds apart. John Wren of Borah won it in 41.3. The first three finishers in the 880 yard run were all under two minutes.

John Workman of Richland threw the javelin 180-7. Area entries dominated the event with Gary LeValley second for Walla Walla, Wade Robison of Pasco was third and Nelse Petermann of Kennewick was fourth.

Petermann was another busy local entry. He won the 120 yard high hurdles with a 15.1 and was second in the 180 yard lows with a 20.8. He scored 11 of Kennewick's 19 points. The Lions also won the fatman's relay. Second places earned by local kids were in the 100 yard dash (Dan Vache of Richland), the 440 yard relay (Pasco), and the long jump (Noble Johnson of Pasco).

Denise Cromwell led the Columbia River gals winning the 100 and 220 yard dashes with times of 11.9 and 27.1. Walla Walla won the 880 and 440 yard relays. The top local finishes were by Kennewick (second in the 880 relay); Rita Beasley, Pasco (third in the 100) and Connie Anderson, Kennewick (third in the 220).



April 15, 1972

It was the unexpected in Saturday's Pasco Invitational Track Meet which made the 11th running of the event exciting for the five local teams. To be sure, Connell's Greg Gibson was an easy winner in the 880, just eight-tenths of a second off the record pace, and Kennewick's Lynn Gibson had his way in the two-mile.

But it had hardly figured that Kennewick's hefty Bill Cheek would win the 100-yard dash with a lunge and a 10.6 clocking over Richland's Steve Ard(also 10.6). Fort Vancouver helped the local pair when it failed to enter 9.8 sprinter Mike Trimble in either the 100 or 220, but there were others in the field who had clocked better times this season than Cheek and Ard.

And how about Kamiakin sophomore Rich Stewart ending up in third in the javelin? He was beaten only by state leader Marty Petermann of Kennewick(who was second Saturday with a 193-10 1/2) and Ralph Petersen, East Valley (the winner with a record 211-8 1/2). The lanky Stewart's 173 wasn't his best of the season, but it beat the best of 14 other teams Saturday by 6 feet. Connell's Gibson even got into the act, winning the 330-yard intermediate hurdles in record time (39.9).

Teamwise it was Ferris which took home the most marbles in this one event, one-entry 16-team affair. It got but one first place effort, a pole vaulting record 14-6 by Judd Eddy, but six second-place finishes were enough for the visitors from Spokane to take the overall trophy.

The Saxons totaled 45 points to 39 1/2 for second-place Richland. Borah of Boise was third at 38. Of the other Tri-City area teams, Kennewick, with showings from Lynn Gibson and Petermann, took fifth, Connell was eighth, Pasco 12th and Kamiakin 16th. The Braves did not enter a full team.

Two second places each by Ard and hurdler Jay Pugh and thirds by pole vaulter Dennis Dudley and two-miler Mark Higginson gave the Bombers most of their points. Richland also captured second in the medley relay with Dale Lindsey, Randy Rolph, Matt Romanelli and Kurt Beckman and third in the 880 relay with Lindsey, Ard, Ron Hall and Frank Bullock.

Kennewick's strong showing was due mainly to the staying power of Petermann in the hurdles and Gibson in the longer distance runs. Gibson- after winning the mile in a respectable 4:30-stayed on Greg Gibson's heels for much of the 880, then came back to place fifth in the two-mile. Petermann had a fourth in the high hurdles and fourth in the grueling intermediates. Kennewick's only other placer was Dick Knoll, third in the high jump.

Greg Gibson, the man all came to see, disappointed no one with his decathalon performance. An 880 specialist , Gibson also ran the high hurdle preliminaries Saturday morning plus running a leg of the mile relay and winning the intermediate hurdles.

Greg laid just off the pace through the first lap of the 880, then he and Lynn made their move as the gun sounded. With Lynn shouting at him to keep up the good race, Greg took the lead into the first turn and held it the rest of the way, winning by about five yards over Scott Walters of Ferris. Ron Winn was the only other individual to place for the Eagles, fifth in the 100-yard dash.

For host Pasco, Keith Hegg slipped in a fine 20.8 in the low hurdles for third place while teammate Beggett had to settle for second place in the pole vault. Baggett figured to have a duel with Eddy of Ferris, but he instead came out a foot short. Baggett had leaped 14-6 1/2 earlier this week but he broke two poles doing it and was still trying to get used to the new one at meet time. His trouble was not getting height he had plenty. But he couldn't get far enough past the bar to land in the pit, sometimes falling into the bar after already clearing it. Mike McWhorter took fourth in the high jump and Dan Anderson fifth in the high and intermediate hurdles for the Bulldogs.

In other events, Fort Vancouver's brawny Mark Young set a meet record in shot put with 58-2 3/8 (he threw over 60 last year), and the Lewiston mile relay team set a record of 3:29.7, one-tenth better than the old mark.



April 14, 1973

Junior Keith Tinner carted off three personal trophies, set a meet record and anchored the second-place mile relay team in helping the Tacoma Linclon High School Abes win Saturday's Pasco Invitational Track and Field meet by 13 1/2 points. Lincoln scored 54 points, nine more than last year's champion, in defeating Richland (40 1/2) and the rest of the field. It was the second straight year Richland placed second.

Tinner was named the meet's outstanding athlete to win his third trophy. He had awed the Eastern Washington crowd earlier with unbelievable speed in setting a 440 yard dash record of 49.0 seconds, bettering the old mark by a full second. Two other meet records were broken. Tinner, in lane one, made up the entire stagger-start distance and led the field after the first curve. Kennewick's Cliff Burt ran the fastest time of his life, 51.6, in placing a surprise second as the winner of the first heat.

Tinner's mile relay team had the fastest time in Washington until Gonzaga beat it by .8 seconds Saturday with a meet record 3:26.1. Lincoln was second only because Tinner ran his second blazing 440 to pass Spokane's East Valley and third place Richland. Tinner embraced Richland anchorman, Matt Romanelli, after the race, then sought out and congratulated each of the four Gonzaga runners for their best-in-the-state performance.

Gonzaga won three of four relays, Richland winning the fourth-the medley(220, 440, 880 and mile) The team of Doug McArthur, Romanelli, Rory Stewart, and Ron Melton outran second-place Lake Washington by 3.1 seconds with an 8:00.7.

Richland's Mark Higginson was also a double winner, taking the mile and two-mile races as expected. The times were his best this season, 4:21.2 and 9:22.9. He placed second to Tinner in coaches' voting for outstanding athlete. Kamiakin's sophomore Tom Rogers ran his best mile ever to place fourth with a 4:36.2.

The other Tri-Citians to win individual championships were also from Richland. Hanford juniors Dale Lindsey and Dennis Dudley took firsts in the 180-yard low hurdles and the pole vault. Dudley vaulted 14-3 but missed three times in attempting to tie the meet record 14-6 set by Spokane Ferris' Judd Eddy last year. Lindsey won the lows in 20.6. The state's best time in the lows is 20.1 this year. Lindsey's victory in his third race was even more outstanding because he had pulled a hamstring muscle in the left leg early in the intermediates.

Another underclassman, Kennewick sophomore Jim Jessernig, placed second in the discus at 143-7. Tom Kurdy of Lewiston won with 150-0, a mark Jesernig had beaten last Tuesday in a dual meet with Walla Walla(152-2 1/2). Richland's Steve Ard had the other area second place when he finished one-half second behind Tinner in the 220 dash with his best time this season, 23.0.

For the victorious Abes, the state's top 100 yard dasher, Pat Clifton, won with a 10.3, they got seconds in the shot put and 880 yard relay, Jarvis Cobb set a meet record of 44-6 in the triple jump and Campbell won the long jump. Third place Ferris got wins from Bob Michaelis in the high jump(6-2), and by Kjel Killsgaard(59-1 1/4) Rich Dahl of Spokane's North Central won both the high and low hurdles.



April 13, 1974

Hanford's Dennis Dudley set a meet and personal record in the pole vault and was named the outstanding athlete in Saturday's 13th annual Pasco Invitational track and field meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. Dudley easily cleared 15 feet-1 1/4 and then stopped jumping. Dudley said he hwas getting a little tired, his knee was hurt slightly, and he wanted to run in the 440 yard relay.

Tacoma Wilson took five first places and four seconds to win the team title by 10 points over league mate and defending champion Lincoln, 92-82 with Boise Borah third at 80. Lorenzo Bellamy won the high and low hurdles, Harold Celms set a meet record of 4:17.2 in winning the mile, and two Wilson relay teams were victorious including the record-setting medley relay squad.

Lincoln took four firsts, three involving its outstanding middle distance man Keith Tinner, who set a meet record in the 220 yard dash with 22.0 in the finals and 21.8 in the prelimanaries. The faster time will be counted as the record. Tinner also won the 440 dash in 49.4, just .4 seconds off his meet record and his best this season, and was clocked unofficially at 48.2 in the mile relay.

Eight meet records were broken, and six of the marks were state bests. Kamiakin's Rich Stewart unloaded a 213-10 javelin throw to set a meet record and the Washington 1974 standard. Stewart's best was 203-0 last season, and Saturday his throws were in the 180 and 190 foot range until he stired the crowd with the tremendous heave while Dudley was readying for his vault record. Connell's Kent Mackey threw a personal best of 204-9 for third place.

Other state bests were by Tinner(220,440), Bellamy(lows), Dudley, and Spokane West Valley high jumper Ed Mann(6-6 3/4). Meet records were also set in the intermediate hurdles(Ericson, Borah-39.5) and triple jump(McDuffle, Franklin Pierce-46-6).

Richland finished sixth, highest of any Tri-City teams with 33 points. Its best were thirds by pole vaulter Jim Jahnke, low hurdler Brad Upton, long jumper Gene Farris, and the 880 relay team. Upton ran 21.1 in the finals but had 20.9 in the preliminaries, one of the state's top 10 times. Eighth-place Hanford's top performances included Dale Dudley's 148-3 discus throw for third and Dale Lindsey's third, fourth, and fifth in the highs, lows, and intermediate hurdles.

Pasco was ninth, highlighted by Lelawyn Mitchell's second in th long jump and Rick Gray's third in the highs. Kennewick's day was made by a tremendous showing from junior Jim Jesernig. He won the discus with a throw of 159- 1/4. Late Grandview entrant Jon Harris took second with a area-best jumpof 45-5 1/2 in the triple jump.



April 12, 1975

Wilson-Tacoma won three of four relays, got a double win from Harold Cehms in the mile and two-mile and easily outdistanced the field in defending its team title in the 14th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium. Lincoln-Tacoma, second in this meet last year, was the bridesmaid again and host Pasco turned in perhaps the most suprising team effort of the day to capture third place.

This year's meet was dedicated to Dale Gier, former coach and present administrator at CBC. He has been one of the people behind the scenes of the Pasco Invitational and was presented a memento by Pasco High track coach Steve Potter during the opening ceremonies.

Harold Celms was named the outstanding athlete for his performance. He won the mile in 4:19.5 and then came back to cap the double with a 9:30.4 two-mile. Ferris' Tim Riley, expected to challenge Celms in both races and given a fairly good chance of doubling himself, never really threatened. He was a distant, second in the mile and after leading for the first part of the two mile faded to finish third behind Celms and John Follese of Bethel.

Wilson won six events and took three seconds in ringing up 106 points to Lincoln with 47 points. The team surprise was Pasco as LeRoy Jordan, Lelawyn Mitchell and a fine supporting cast had the Bulldogs challenging for second place. Jordan was third in the 100 and won his qualifying heat for the 220 in 22.8 before pulling up lame during the 880 relay. He got a charley horse in his thigh about 100 yards from the finish and was forced to drop out. He rebounded in time to take fourth in the 220 finals with a time of 23.1. Mitchell carried home three individual trophies for Pasco, finishing third in the 330 yard intermediate hurdles, the long jump and the triple jump.

Those in the supporting roles for the Bulldogs were Sonny Goulet with his third place finish in the javelin, Jeff Wilson with his 13-9 for second in the pole vault and Tim Gosseen with his fifth in the 440.

Only one meet record was broken, Ed Mann of West Valley-Spokane going 6-6 1/2 in the high jump to eclipse his 1974 record of 6-6 1/8. He has gone 6-9 this year, but failed at his try at 6-7.

Roy Martin, a leading candidate for the outstanding athlete award, took home first place trophies for the shot put and the discus. He beat Kennewick's Jim Jesernig for the discus title, throwing 164-10 to Jesernig's 160-2. Martin, who had thrown 59-5 in the shot in the early going this year, was considered a threat to break the meet record, but his winning mark of 57-2 fell short.

Outstanding performances were also turned in by Connell's Curt Didier and Sunnysides's Rick Linehan. Bjoth came as individuals sonce a full team was not represented from those two schools, but that didn't stop them from putting on a show. Counting preliminary races, Didier ran the hurdles five times, tying with Linehan for first in the 330 intermediate hurdles with a time of 40.9. Didier was second in the 120 high hurdles, behind Lorenzo Bellamy and also finished second in the 180 low hurdles. He was another contender for outstanding athlete.

Some of the other top performances by area athletes were Duane Ostler's third in the 440 and Keith Jolley's fourth in the 880 and his third in the mile as those two ere the mainstays for Richland. Kennewick's Terry Haukeh, who had set a school record in the triple jump on Thursday, didn't jump as far Saturday but still took second.

One unfortunate incident in the meet occurred when Mike Houston of West Valley was injured in the 440 relay. He handed the baton off land then tripped over his teammate, sliding face down along the dirt track. He suffered a cut lip when he was spiked in the face, a cut over his eye, and various scrapes and scratches. He was taken to a Pasco hospital and released after having stitches in his upper lip.



April 17, 1976

Three meet records, a new team champion and a pair of fine individual local efforts highlighted the 15th annual Pasco Invitational trophy Track Meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium.

The only thing the fans and performers could find to complain about was the weather on a windy, chilly, overcast day that was sprinkled with a few rain drops near the end. The competition from among the 536 athletes and 27 teams was superb.

Kelly Britz, a distance runner from Jesuit high in Portland, was named the outstanding athlete. He set a meet record in winning the 880 in 1:54.8, eclipsing the old mark of 1:56. He also won the mile and became the second straight distance runner to capture the award. Wilson-Tacoma's Harold Celms won last year.

Vince Goldsmith, a small shotputter by comparison and a member of Mt. Tahoma's 440 relay team, shattered the shot put record with a throw of 64-1. The old mark was 59-2 3/8. Goldsmith, second last season to Wilson-Tacoma's Mike Westlin in the State AAA meet, set his sites on a State AAA record later this spring with the toss. The existing state mark is 63-1 1/2. He stands 6-0, weighs 215. "I'm not as tall or as stocky as most shotputters," Goldsmith said. "I get across the ring quickly, though, and have the momentum when I release."

The third record went to Franklin-Pierce's Lon Moore in the high jump. He cleared 6-7 3/8 to break Ed Mann's record of 6-6 1/2 set last year. Mann competed for West Valley-Spokane.

Tacoma schools dominated the team race. Foss won the meet with 77 points, followed by last years State AA champs, Franklin-Pierce, with 56 and defending Pasco Invite winner Wilson-Tacoma with 53.

The best Tri-City performances were by Gary Little of Richland and Mark Cox of Kennewick. Little won the 330 intermediate hurdles in 41.1, edging Jesuit's Chris Bernards who finished in 41.4. Little finished second in the 120 high hurdles.

Cox set a personal best in the javelin of 202-5 in winning the event. His best effort last season was 187 feet. "This will be a good idea of what the state competition will be like, but the throws will fluctuate," Cox said. "I felt it was possible for me to win. The competition was tops for this time of year."

There were two other double winners besides Britz. Foss' Jeff Bruce captured both the 120 high hurdles and the 180 low hurdles. His time of 20.35 in the lows was exceptional considering the slowness of the track and the chilly day. Dick Michelson of Interlake sucessfully defended the titles in the 100 and 220 that he won last year. He ran the 100 in 10.3 and the 220 in 22.7.

There were three other Tri-City placers in the meet. Pasco's Dennis Sullivan took fourth in the long jump at 19-5 1/4. Kamiakin's medley relay team finished fourth and the Braves' relay team of Tom Trout, Brian Ivey, Tom Atwood and Ron Wandling took third behind Foss and Eisenhower.



April 16, 1977

Aaron Williams of Wilson-Tacoma stole the show, but there were plenty of fine supporting performances in the 16th annual Pasco Invitational track meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium.

Williams, Named the meet's outstanding athlete, won four events and set meet records in three of them. His records came in the long jump (22-10), 110 high hurdles (14.03) and the triple jump (47-2 1/2). He won the 180 low hurdles in 20.03.

Behind Williams, Wilson won the team title with 76 points over rival Lincoln-Tacoma 66, Davis 60, and Mead 58. There were 27 teams entered.

While Williams was walking away with outstanding athlete award, there were many who could of just as easily won had Williams not been so dominating. There was Vincent Goldsmith, the shotput phenom from Mt. Tahoma, who won the shot with a meet record 68-1 and the discus with a 164-9. Goldsmith, who has thrown 69-4 1/2 this year, fell short of the coveted 70-foot barrier which he hopes to hit this season.

Howard Conley of Kamiakin got the lone Tri-City victory and did it in a "take note" fashion. He ran a 4:17.5 mile, just three-tenths of a second off the meet record, but more importantly it gives the red-haired senior the State's best time this season. He beat Dick LaLonde of Farris by nearly four seconds.

"My basic goal this year was to hit 4:17 and qualify for State," Conley said. "I felt tight at the end of the race. I was afraid somebodymight come up on me, but they never did." "I think we saw two of the best milers in the state here today," LaLonde"s coach, Herm Caviness, said. "Howard's been improving all season," Kamiakin Coach Ron Redden beamed. "He's cut his time down from 4:26 to 4:17 this year. Ithink he's got a solid shot at the State title."

The best event of the day probably had to be the high jump. University's Jeff Barrett, who Friday had just set a Greater Spokane League record of 6-10, out-jumped Wilbert Horsely of Lincoln-Tacoma and Scott Allen of Wenatchee.

Allen cleared a personal best 6-9 before bowing out at 6-10. The senior, who last year had a best of 6-4 had started jumping at 5-8, ran both the low and high hurdles and had to run a leg of the mile relay after he got through with the high jump.

Horsely, a short, springy-legged youngster, stayed with Barrett through 6-10 before missing all three tries at 6-11. Barrett had the bar raised to 7-0 (the State record is 6-11 1/2) but he missed all three tries, his third jump the closest of the three. "I don't want to win on fewer misses." said Barrett before his third try a 6-11. "I hate to lose on fewer misses and I don't want to win that way, either." Barrett, who would have won even had he missed his third jump at 6-11, promptly went out and cleared the height.

This year's meet, the first on refurbished Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium, was dedicated to former Pasco High basketball coach and athletic director Don Monson, now an assistant cage coach at Michigan State University. "This meet is dedicated to a dear personal friend and a friend to Pasco and the State," meet director John Crawford said during the dedication ceremonies. "Don Monson is one of the reasons we are proud of Pasco." Monson was unable to attend because of a job conflict.

In all, 11 records were set Saturday in what was the strongest field ever for the Invite. Many of these performers will more than likely meet head-on again at the State meet later this spring.



April 15, 1978

They call it the Pasco Invitational, but it looked more like the Aaron Williams and Susie Morehart Show. Williams and Morehart combined for six victories, six 1978 state bests, five meet records and a pair of outstanding athlete trophies Saturday afternoon to highlight the competition in the 17th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet.

Williams exploits helped lead Wilson to its second successive team title, the Rams outscoring runnerup Mead 89-60. Morehart's Bethel squad totaled 37 points-30 by Morehart and finished third in the girls' division, trailing only Pullman (68) and Interlake (38). Pasco finished seventh in both boys' and girls' categories, while Richland, led by the only local individual event winner, 800-meter champion Eva Nicaracio, was eighth in the girls' meet.

Williams' superb performance was about as surprising as another oil price hike. Last year the versatile Ram superstar captured four events and set two meet records enroute to his outstanding athletic award. This year he set meet records and state bests in the high hurdles (14.1), low hurdles (19.5) and triple jump (49-4) as he became the first competitor to ever win back-to-back outstanding athlete awards.

Wiiliams probably would have won four events again, exept he opted to forego the long jump- in which he holds the state's best mark- in favor of the high jump. Williams finished fourth in the latter event, while his replacement-teammate Warren Washington- outdueled Pasco's Dennis Sullivan to win the long jump with a 22-4 1/2.

Morehart, meanwhile, came up with a couple of lifetime bests to pull off her triple win. The Bethel senior eclipsed her previous best long jump by six inches to win that event with an 18-6 effort, cut more than a second off her fastest 200-meter time, winning in 25.2, and equaled her career best in taking the 100-yard dash in 11.0.

Nicacio was an easy winner in the 800 as she put on the top performance by a local competitor. The Bomber senior shaved three seconds off her previous fastest time (clocking a 2:22.0) as she whipped Ferris' Dawn Galvin by more than four seconds. Nicacio also finished second in the mile run with a 5:19.2 effort.

Other fine performances by local girls included second-place finishes by Pasco's Quenna Beasley in the shot put and Connell's Jennifer McFall in the high jump, and third place efforts by Karen Beamer in the discus and Julie Heiden in the high jump of Pasco and Kamiakin's Donna Hettnin in the 400 meters. Greg Hall of Connell racked up two runnerup finishes in the boys' division, ending up second to University's Kevin Frandsen in the 300-meter Intermediate hurdles and to Wilson's Rob Webster in the 800 meters. Kennewick's Mark Higgins won third-place trophies in both the discus and shot put, while Richland's Darris Piggee was second in the 400 meters.

In addition to Williams, meet records were also set in the boys' division by Frandsen in the intermediate hurdles(39.2) and by Pullman's Doug Wollen with a 176-7 discus throw.

In the girls's meet, Cathy Wison of Mercer Island was a double winner, capturing both the discus and shotput, while Pullman's Brenda Allwine pulled a major upset by nipping a diving Tami Lincicum of Interlake in the 80 yd low hurdles. Allwine was timed in a state-best 10.4 as she edged Lincicum, the defending state class AAA champion who set a national record in the event with a 10.2 clocking a year ago.

"I thought we had a trememdous meet," remarked Invite Director John Crawford. "Every year we think, there's no way we can be better than last year, but I think we did it anyway."



April 14, 1979

Over 800 of the best Class AAA and AA athletes in the state couldn't take the spotlight from a high jumper from a nearby Class A school at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet Saturday. That high jumper was Kiona Benton's Carina Westover, who bettered an existing state and meet record en route to copping the outstanding female athlete trophy before an appreciative gathering at the 18th annual affair.

Competing under nearly ideal weather conditions on a warm, sunny afternoon, Westover leaped 5-10 to break the meet record by seven inches and steal the limelight away from two extremely close battles for the team championship trophies.

Hazen won the boys' title nipping Wilson in the final event of the day, the 1,600 meter relay, to knock off the defending champion Rams by a two point margin. Meanwhile, Pasco nearly pulled off a major upset, barely missing a share of the girls' team crown before settling for second place behind Mead of Spokane.

The Pasco girls, receiving outstanding efforts from Quenna Beasley and Kris Weitz, won three individual championships and totalled 44 1/2 points, only 2 1/2 points behind Mead's winning total of 47. Hazen had 68 points while Wilson finished second in the boys' race with 66 points. The nearest Big Nine Conference competitor was fourth place Walla Walla with 40 points.

The only athlete to come close to matching Westover's effort was Central Valley's Dan Vickery. The Bears' hurdler clocked in at an incredible 13.8 in the 110 high hurdles, bettering the meet record set by Wilson's Aaron Williams by nearly one-half second. Vickery, who won the outstanding male athlete trophy, also came in a tenth of a second under the existing state record of 13.9 set by Roger's Dick Olsen in 1967.

"The meet ran well," said Pasco track Coach Steve Potter, who had nothing but praise for the meet director John Crawford, who finished the meet nearly 20 minutes ahead of schedule. "The weather really cooperated. That was what had me worried more than anything before the meet."

Pasco girls' Coach Pam Bezona-Loew was ecstatic about her team's surprise performance, which was better than that of perennial state power and defending state champion Sammamish. "We exceeded my greatest expectations." said Loew. "Beasley and Weitz both did a super job."

Beasley set a meet record in the discus, producing a 128-8 1/2 effort to better the old record by two feet. Beasley accounted for 10 more of Pasco's total points by winning the shot put (42-7). Weitz set a meet record in the javelin, tying with Eisenhower's Cheryl Rhea at 145-3. She also snared a fifth place finish in the 80 yard hurdles with a 12.2 time.

A total of nine meet records fell during the day, six of them in the girls' portion of the meet. Several other Tri-City athletes had excellent performances during the day. Kamiakin's Vinnie Bessey set two school records, placing third in the 110 high hurdles in 14.8, and clocking in at 20.1 in the 180 low hurdles in a preliminary heat. Pasco's John Burrus was second in the javelin, hurling the spear 189-4 into the wind to finish behind East Valley's Mike Shill, who was a double winner, also winning the shot put.

Kamiakin's Dave Warren and Kennewick's Cal Loveall snapped school records in the long jump. Warren was second in 21-8 while Loveall was fifth in 21-4 3/4. Kennewick's George Fraga was second in the 800 with a time of 1:56.9, while Prosser's Mike Blackmore won the two mile in 9:19.8.



April 19, 1980

The power of Pasco's Quenna Beasley and the blazing speed of Franklin's Ron Jackson stole the show at the 19th annual Pasco Invitational Saturday. Beasley shattered her own record in the girls' discus by almost 12 feet with a throw of 140-2 3/4 and bettered the shot put mark by nearly four feet with a heave of 46-6 3/4 to earn the outstanding female athlete trophy.

Jackson equalled the boys' 200-meter dash record with a 21.72 time, but saved his best for the 100-meter event. The Seattle standout blazed to a 10.54 finish in the 100. Meet officals reported the auto-timed 10.54 equaled approximately a 10.3 hand-timed effort, which was equal to a 9.4 100-yard dash -which would have been the fastest 100-yard run in the Washington high school history. Jackson captured the outstanding male athlete trophy with his impressive performance.

The meet, held under hazy skies and warm temperatures, featured several record-breaking performances. In addition to two new girls' events and Beasley's two marks, team champion Hazen set a meet standard in the 4 x 200-meter relay. The Hazen distaff squad piled up 75 points to easily win the girls' team title. Franklin was second with 52 points, Richland took third with 39 points and Kamiakin was fourth with 36.

Wilson, which captured the boys' team crown, set a meet record in the 4 x 400-meter relay wtih a 3:21.44 clocking. The Rams' Hugh Hazelquist also set a meet mark in the mile with a 4:15 and teamate Calvin Kennon tied the 400-meter record at 48.70.

Kennedy High School's Brian Birch ran the 300 meters in 38.54 for a meet record and also captured the 110-meter high hurdles with a 14.4 effort. Bellarmine's Jeff Knowlton and the Foss 4 x 100 meter relay team set neew records in the meet with times of 1:52.99 and 42.58 respectively.

Tri-City winner's included Pasco's defending champion John Burrus, who won the boy's javelin with a throw of 203-2 1/2 and Dave Warren and Camille Harding of Kamiakin. Warren won the boy's long jump with a 22-8 3/4 leap and Harding took the girl's high jump with a 5-3 vault.

Hazen's Julie Castagna was Beasley's main competition for the meet's outstanding female athlete with three victories. Castagna claimed first in the girl's 100, 400 and 200.

Beasley said the hometown crowd was a big boon to her outstanding afternoon. "Yeah, I was pretty excited about competiting here," she said after her two victories, "I was really ready, especially for the discus. I was throwing it over 140 feet during practice during the week and I wanted to set a mark nobdy will break for a while. I was really psyched. I wasn't too worried wabout the shot. I didn't think anyone was going to beat me."

"She obviously had a good day," said Pasco Coach Pam Bezona-Loew of Beasley. "If she would be more serious she would be awesome. She's a super young lady and she's been real consistent all season."

The Kennewick boys piled up 40 points for fourth place in the team standings. Pasco had 26 points, good for eighth and Kamiakin finished 10th with 22. The Pasco girls finished eighth in the team standings with 24 points while Kennewick was 13th with 15.



April 18, 1981

Only half of Wilson's stradle sprint duo showed up for Saturday's 20th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet, but the Ram's Calvin Kennon put on a stunning performance that make the crowd forget no-show Darrell Robinson.

Kennon stole the show by leading Tacoma school to the boy's team championship with two record-shattering performances and three first-place finishes. Kennon, who was named the meet's outstanding male athlete, cranked out a 46.88 400 meter dash that is the fastest time for that event in a Washington prep track meet. It clipped almost two full seconds off the meet mark, set by Lincoln great Keith Tinner in 1974.

His record-smashing dash also bettered Tinner's all-time state prep record of 46.9. a converted mark from a 47.2 440-yard dash run in 1974. Tinner later ran a 46.7 in Europe while still a high school senior. Kennon also won the 100-meter in 10.7 and anchored Wilson's record-breaking 1600-meter relay team. The Rams posted a 3:20.09 to break their year-old mark of 3:21.44.

Wilson amassed 82 points to easily out distance runner-up Lincoln, which had 66. Kennewick, led by double winner Cal Lovell, finished a surprising third with 55 1/2 points. Loveall captured the triple jump with a 45-6 3/4 effort and the long jump with a leap of 21-3. He also finished fifth in the 200 with a 22.84.

Keith Nelson of St. John, competing independently, won the unlikely double of the pole vault (14-4) and javelin (196-4 3/4)and Shadle Park's massive Neil Kneip won the discus (171-2) and shot put (55-1).

But it was Kennon who received most of the attention. The Ram senior was on center stage after teammate Robinson, the 400-meter National Junior Olympics Champ and the only runner to ever beat Kennon, missed the team bus Friday. "I didn't expect to run this well this early in the season," Kennon said after his sizzling 400. "I'm ahead of schedule for this time of the year. I didn't expect to go under 47.1 until the Shelton Invitational later this spring." "I expect to do even better when I get into national competition."

Although pleased with his first-place finishes, Loveall felt the stiff breeze blowing into the face of the athletes in the field events prevented his form doing better.

"The wind was a definite factor," he said. "I felt I could have jumped a foot, and a half farther without it." "Calvin had a real good day," enthused Kennewick Coach Dave Rockstrom, "but I'm disappointed we didn't do better in the distances." In addition to Loveall, two bright spots for the Lions were Jeff Whitmire's school record 11.24 in the 100 and Mark Hoitink's 9:41.53 two-mile run, good for third place.

Clay Poplin had two thirds for Richland-a 43 1 1/3 in the triple jump and a 6-4 in the high jump. "Some of our kids had their best times," said Kamiakin's Ron Redden, "but they still didn't place. The competition at this meet is excellent." Redden's son Rick was the Braves' top male performer. The sophomore standout finished second behind Loveall in the triple jump with a 43-4 and fourth in the 300 meter hurdles with a 40.23.

Mike Marble of Pasco finished second behind Nelson in the pole vault. "Mike has been oustanding for us all season." said Bulldog Coach Pam Bezona-Loew, "but he was disappointed he didn't do better."

Only one other boys' meet mark was broken in addition to the two by Wilson. The Lincoln 800 meter relay team broke the 1977 mark of Lake Washington with a 1:31.67. The boys' crown was the sixth for Wilson. "Next to state this is our favorite meet," said Ram Coach Jim Daulley. "First is the chance to travel, second is the level of competition and third is the weather. It's just an outstanding meet."


Tacoma's Lincoln stole the spotlight, but Richland and Kamiakin girls' teams finished surprisingly high in the 20th annual Pasco Invitational track meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium. Lincoln tallied 59 points outdistancing second place finishers Richland and Sammamish with 42 points. Kamiakin and Interlake tied for third with 38 points.

Elaine Martin of Richland won the 400-meter dash with a school record time of 59.55 and finished tied for second with Helen Caffee of Lincoln in the 100-meter dash in 12.39 seconds. Martin also ran a leg on the second place finishing 1600 meter relay team. Robin Jordan, Rene Hendrix and Kay King aided Martin in setting a school best with a time of 4:07.35. Lincoln won the event in 4:04.17. "I was very, very pleased with our performance," said Richland Coach Jim Qualheim.

Kamiakin's Camille Harding had two second place finishes, a third and a fourth to lead the Braves. Harding leaped 16-5 3/4 for second in the long jump, and vaulted 5-4 in the high jump for second. She had a 15.1 time in the 100 low hurdles, to finish while Kennewick's Pam Board had a time of 15.04 to take second. Marva Benjamin broke her own meet record to win with a time of 14.7.

Kamiakin Coach Sandra Morgan was extremely pleased with the Braves' finish, "Considering we only brought nine girls I thought we did quite well." Besides Harding's efforts, the Braves Robin Prince heaved the javelin 129-9 1/2 for second place behind North Central's Shaney Coe. Richland's Jordan broke her own school record with a 122-0 toss to finish third.

Kennewick, which finished sixth with 36 points, received fine efforts from Mary Foreman and Daya Banker. Foreman took second in the 800-meter dash with a time of 2:23.84 behind Linda Jacobsen of Sammamish. Banker finished third in the shot put with a toss of 36- 3/4.

Kentridge broke its old 400-meter relay record with a time of 49.09, while Syndey Armstead of Cheney broke the 300-meter low hurdles record (46.18) with a time of 45.99.

Beth Willard of Richland had two fourth place finishes. She had a time of 2:24.20 in the 800 and 11:57.30 in the two mile competing in both events in a span of a half-hour. The Lions' Board finished third in the 300 low hurdles with a time of 46.5 and took fourth in the long jumpo with a leap of 15-9 1/2.



April 13, 1982

"Great isn't the word to describe it," said an ecstatic Richland Coach Jim Qualheim while he watched the Bomber girls put the finishing touches on the team championship by winning the 1600-meter relay at Saturday's Pasco Invitational. "If I could think of the word I'd tell you." Led by Elaine Martin's four firsts, Richland breezed past the 25 girls teams to capture the 21st annual track meet, the first title ever for a Tri-City team.

The meet, which was dedicated to director John Crawford, drew an estimated 2,500 despite strong, cool wind conditions. Meanwhile, Kennewick's Pam Board hurdled past Martin to grab the outstanding female athlete award.

Although winning the top athlete honor, Board had mixed feelings about her performance. "I had a great day, but I'm disappointed, too. I had my best long jump and our relay team (400) did real good, but I didn't push myself in the 100 hurdles."

The junior hurdler said she was concentrating on staying ahead of Kamiakin's Camille Harding and Central Valley's Annette Helling. Although comfortably in front of those two, Board let Franklin's Marva Benjamin slip by and edge her at the tape.

But Board really couldn't convince anyone that she was upset with her performance, especially after setting a meet record in the 300 low hurdles with a time of 45.5, eclipsing the previous record of 45.99 held by Cheney's Snyder Armstead. Board had her best leap in the long jump at 17-9 beating Harding for the first time.

Martin had to be quite close in the outstanding athlete balloting with a first-place time of 13.0 in the 100 while running away from the pack in the 400 with a time of 59.3.

The senior sprinter also was the first on two relays, aiding the 800 team of Janet Tintinger, Barb Dingree and Robin Jordan to a time of 1:47.0, while the same foursome took the 1600 relay in the time of 4:11.9.

"It's my last time at the Pasco Invite and I really want to do well," said Martin. "I'm pleased with the way I'm running. Our girls are really doing well."

And while Board and Martin were cleaning up on most of the firsts, Harding wasn't having a bad day, either. The junior tied Davis' Jewel Dorman at 5-7 but took second due to one extra miss. In the long jump she leaped 17-2 1/2 which looked as if it would be the winning jump before Board got her personal best on the final leap. Harding had another third in the 100 low hurdles, finishing behind Board, again.

While Richland amassed 70 first-place points, Kennewick accumulated 46 for second place and Kamiakin posted 27 for seventh.

Supporting Richland's first-place effort were Shari Biggs, Jordan and Tintinger. Biggs placed second in the discus with a toss of 118-8, a new school record, while putting the shot 40-10 3/4. Jordan broke her own school record by 10 feet in the javelin with a heave of 138-0. Tintinger ran her first 800 of the year, finishing third with a time of 2:21.5.

The Kennewick 400 relay team led by Board, Othe Armstrong, Sheila Horsley and Dawn Kwis slipped passed Cheney with a winning time of 50.9.

For the remaining part of the season, Martin plans to concentrate her efforts on the 100, 400, 800 relay and the 1600 relay. If she continues to enjoy the success that has come her way the past two seasons, she could easily be a threat to place high, if not to win, in the four events at state. "My times and the way I'm running are ahead of pace compared to this time last year," Martin added. "My quarters (400s) have been really good."

As far as Board is concerned her marks, especially in the long jump, should continue to imnprove. "My coaches tell me that I've gone alot farther on my scratch jumps (farther in feet not inches). So I hope I can."


It wasn't four typical Pasco Invitational weather Saturday at wind-swept Edgar Brown Stadium and the marks posted by the male competitors reflected the less-than-ideal conditions. With gusts up to 38 mph buffeting the athletes all afternoon, all but one boys' meet record withstood the field's challenge at the 21st annual track meet. The lone meet mark was set by Shadle Park's Brian Hill who shattered the javelin record - a throw of 213-10 by Kamiakin's Rich Stewart in 1974 - by two feet with a strong throw into a stiff crosswind. Although all but one record remained intract, the meet was not without its outstanding efforts.

Led by Steve Lucas, Pat Kostecka and Wayne Anderson, Mead of Spokane captured the team championship with 62 points, shaking off a strong challenge by Steve Hickey-led Pendleton. Lucas won the triple jump (46-7 1/2) and high jump (6-7), Anderson took first in the shot put (56-11 3/4) and Kostecka claimed the discus title (161-3) to pace the Panthers.

Hickey captured the outstanding male athlete award with three first-place finishes as the Buckaroos accumulated 58 points for the runner-up position in the team standings. Hickey won the 400 and 200 meter relays with times of 48.8 and 22.6, respectively, and ran in Pendleton's winning 400 relay, which took the title with a 43.8 clocking.

Not far behind Hickey as the top male performer was Kamiakin's Garrick Redden, who had a first, second, third and fifth. The talented junior won the long jump with a leap of 22-7, claimed second in the triple jump with a 45-4 1/4 effort, took third in the 300 hurdles with a 40.6 dash and finished fifth in the javelin with a throw of 164-3. "I expected to do a little better in the hurdles," Redden said. "But I was mentally exhausted after the other events. I guess I was upset with my effort in lhe hurdles, but overall I was pleased with my performance."

The only other Tri-City winner in the boys' ranks was Kennewick's Mark Hoitink, who ran 9:22.6 in the two-mile run. As the final lap began, Pendleton's Jeff Christensen momentarily passed hoitink for the lead. But the swift senior displayed an awesome kick seconds later and left Christensen far behind, winning the race by 13 seconds. "I was really confindent I could win it," Hoitink said. "I've gotten a lot stronger lby running hills land it's really helped my kick."

"He can run with anybody in the state." said Kennewick Coach Dave Rockstrom of Hoitink. "He can be the state champ." Kennewick had third-place finishers lin Troy McCord (15.5 in the 110 high hurdles) and Dave Spiel (175-4 in the javelin).

Richland's Vernon Mickens and Bob Fasulo claimed runner-up honors to lead the Bombers to a sixth place finish. Mickens took second behind Hickey in the 400 with a time of 49.2 and Fasulo's 40.4 in the 300 hurdles was good for the second spot behind Franklin's Glen Leimnacher, who had a 39.4 for first place.

Fasulo and Mickens also combined with teammates Jerome Vines and Dewayne Welshons to take second in the 1600 relay with a time of 3:28.8 behind Franklin's winning 3:28.3 effort.

The Bombers' Tom Cushing took third in the shot with a heave of 52-5 while the Richland 800 relay team of Fasulo, Welshons, Mickens and Carl Fite was also third with a 1:33.6. Franklin also won that event with a 1:31.3 clocking. The Quakers' Bob McKinney won the 100 with a time of 11.8 in addition to participating in both winning relays.




April 16, 1983

Richland's stellar performance in the boys' portion of Pasco Invitational Track Meet had the Bombers battling for the team title until the final event, but in the end Franklin had just too much talent.

The Quakers of Seattle sped away with the crown at the 22nd annual event Saturday.

Franklin on the strength of five first-place finishes and two seconds, scored 68 points to edge runner-up Mead, which had 65, and third-place finishers Richland and Shadle Park, both which had 62 points.

"It was a gallant effort by a super bunch of young kids," said Richland Coach Jim Qualheim, after his team fell short of its quest for the meet championship. "But we`ll be back next year."

The Bombers were paced by pole vaulter Whit Reed, who cleared 13-3 to win the event, and miler Ken Gibby, who took first with a time of 4:21.1. Richland's Tim Jacobson took second in the discus with a heave of 149-3 and teammate Carl Fite was second in the 100 with a 11.33 clocking. Fite was also fifth in the 200 with a time of 22.71.

The Bombers were second in the medley relay with a time of 8:18.10 and fourth in the 1600 and 400 relays with times of 3:25.78 and 43.98, respectively. Greg Turpen finished fourth in the two mile run with a time of 9:34.00 and teammate Scott Frick took fourth in the high jump with a 6-4 leap.

Kamiakan's Rick Redden won the javelin with a throw of 176-9 and took fourth in the 300 hurdles with a 39.13 clocking. The Braves' Wayne Vertz took second in the 400 with a 50.4 and teammate Doug Bromley was third in the discus with a throw of 147-1.

Pasco sophomore Tim Sullivan won the 200 with a time of 22.10 and took third in the high jump with a jump of 6-4. The Bulldogs' Ben Allen was fourth in the javelin with a 167-11.

Mead's Steve Lucas was named the meet`s outstanding male competitor. He won the high jump(6-8), the 110 hurdles(14.6) and the triple jump(48-7) and fifth in the long jump(22-0).

Franklin's Bob McKinney set a meet record in the 300 hurdles with a time of 37.94, breaking the old mark of 38.54 set by Kennedy's Brian Birch in 1980 and the Quakers' Tony Zackery smashed the meet long jump mark with a 23-11 leap, surpassing the old record of 22-10 set by Wilsons Aaron Williams in 1977.

Going into the final event, the 1600 meter relay, Richland was still in the running for first place. But Kamiakin's Vertz edged Fite by less than half a second for third place, dashing any title hopes the Bomners had.


With the Pasco Invitational girls' team championship on the line, Kennewick saved its best for last and came up a winner Saturday.

"We thought it might come down to the mile relay (the final girls' event of the day), so we put all of our apples into one cart," said Kennewick Coach Ted Homme. It worked.

Pam Board came up with a stirring performance in the final leg of the mile relay, technically called the 4 x 400-meter relay, to vault the Lions past Rainier Beach for first place in the team standings.

The Lions' win in the 4 x 400 gave Homme`s club 60 points while the Vikings had 54.

It took gutty performances by Board, The Lions' top performer, to pull out the win. The senior standout overcame a huge lead by Mead`s Chelly Daratha in the home stretch to win the event in a time of 4:05.33. Mead finished at 4:06.10.

"When I got the baton (from teammate Trish Bergman) I thought she (Daratha) just had a small lead over me, but when I turned around I said "Oh oh, I have alot of ground to make up,''' Board said. "I knew I could pass her, she kind of petered out around the last turn, but then she had a kick at the end and it was real close."

Board also won the 300 low hurdles with a time of 43.80, breaking her own record of 45.5 which she set last year. She also finished third in the 100 low hurdles (14.80) and fourth in the long jump (17-8 1/2). Kennewick, with the second leg run by Otha Armstrong, also captured the 4 x 200 relay with a time of 1:48.60. Armstrong also won the triple jump, a first time event in the meet, with a 34-11 effort.

Behind senior Camille Harding, Kamiakin made a strong showing with a fifth-place finish. Harding won the high jump, trying the meet record with aleap of 5-10. She was also second in the 400 (58.45), third in the long jump (18-6) and fourth in the 100 hurdles (14.81).

Harding won the high jump title three years ago as a freshman, but failed to defend her crown at the last two invites. The Braves' Kim Phillips, a sophomore, won the javelin with a heave of 129-11.

Kentwood's Janell Thorsland was named the meet's top female athlete. She won the 100 hurdles with a time of 14.05 and the long jump with a leap of 19-7, both were meet records. Leslie Ramstad of Evergreen set a record in the two mile with a time of 11:07.3.




April 14, 1984

Richland's boys led the 23rd annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet from start to finish. It was the middle that made Coach Jim Qualheim nervous. "Everything went pretty much like I expected. That is, except what happened to Carl Fite. We would have done better with him in there."

As it was, the Bombers finished with 54 points and won by 11 over runners-up Shadle Park and Franklin. That despite having their best sprinter available for only one event. Pasco won the 400 relay and finished a strong fourth with 40 points. The Bulldogs also placed second in the mile relay and got third-place efforts from Nathan Hill (400) and Tim Sullivan (200).

Richland started off on the right foot, winning the medley relay by 12 seconds over Shadle. However in the next event, the Bombers lost Fite. The senior sprinter had a comfortable lead in the 100 meters when he pulled up lame near the finish. David Hunter then closed the gap and made it a photo finish at the tape. Hunter was the announced winner but after examining the picture, meet officials declared Fite the victor.

It was to be Fite's last race of the day. In the course of winning the 100, he had pulled a hamstring muscle and was unable to compete in the 400, 400 relay or mile relay. The Bombers won anyway. Richland scored points in nine events. Gutty performances by two-miler Derek Bowls and high jumper Scott Frick accounted for 16 Bomber points.

Bowls gave heavy favorite Brent Felt of Blanchet a run for his money, staying on his shoulder until the final lap. The Bomber finished a strong second. Frick's effort was just as thrilling. The 6-foot-6 Richland senior played "high jumper poker" as Qualheim called it with 5-8 Rick Noji of Franklin for the better part of an hour.

Each had passed one height by the time the bar was set at 6-7. Noji cleared this on the first time but Frick missed twice. On his third try, the Bomber was flawless. The same thing happened at 6-8. Noji cleared the bar on try No. 1 and Frick missed twice before coming through. The battle ended at 6-10. Noji was perfect on his second try and Frick failed on all three. The Franklin junior then set a meet record by leaping over the bar at 7 feet and barely missed at 7-2 1/2.

The race of the day turned out to be a dual between defending state champion Matt Donnelly of Renton and Phil Girsberger of Walla Walla in the mile. "I just wanted to stay with him as long as I could. I figured it I could stay with him for three laps. I could outkick him. He came on at the end but he didn't have anything left," said the Blue Devil runner, who was named the meet's top make athlete for his 4:15.37 victory. Donnelly ran 4:15.54 for a close second. It turned out to be the first of two wins for the Walla Walla standout. Girsberger made it 2-for-2 in the 800, coming in just over one second ahead of Dan Gamash of Blanchet.


Freshman Brenda Harding got her first taste of the 23rd annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet from an enviable position--the winners circle. Harding sprinted at the finish to win the 200 meters and anchored the victorious 4x200 relay team as the Braves finished third in the girls' category.

Shorewood of Seattle won a pair of events, finished second in four others and cruised to the team title with 71 points. Lewis and Clark of Spokane was second with 60, followed by Kamiakin (52) and Kennewick (46). "We had a good day overall against some tough, tough competition," said Redden. "There were some disappointments but overall, yes, I thought things went as expected." Redden also got some pleasant surprises. Harding provided one in the 200, making up ground in the last 10 meters to nip Alicia Hodnett of Mountain View at the wire.

Defending champion Kim Phillips was supposed to win the javelin and she did. Phillips also finished a surprising fifth in the discus. Tondi Redden also came through for Kamiakin, setting a school record in the shot put with a heave of 38-11, good for second place. The Braves junior also helped the Kamiakin 4x200 relay team win.

Right on the heels of Kamiakin were the Kennewick Lions and Coach Ted Homme was nothing short of ecstatic. "I'm excited. I came in expecting to be in the top 10 and after our athletes worked very hard during spring break and last week, the results speak for themselves." Otha Armstrong helped the Lions score points in four events. The Kennewick standout placed second to Linda Lester of Lewis and Clark in the triple jump (a meet record-35-11), finished third in the long jump and helped the Lions' 4x100 and 4x200 relay teams each place second. Homme also noted the third-place effort of Sandra Dickenson in the discus and Lisa Edwards in the javelin.

Chris Slentz of Lewis & Clark was the only girl to win two individual events and was named the top female athlete. The Tiger junior set a meet record with a time of 5:04.16 in the mile and followed that with a win in the 800 ((2:19.53).




April 13, 1985

When it came to oohs and aahs at the 24th annual Pasco Invitational track and field meet at Edgar Brown Stadium Saturday, Franklin high jumper/sprinter Rick Noji gave a crowd of 3,500 all it wanted.

He won the high jump with a meet-record leap of 7-2, the 200 meters in 21.66 and wa named the invite's outstanding male athlete.

But when it came to the team crown, nobody matched sprint-happy Pasco. The host Bulldogs, gathering their steam from tow relay wins and a 400 meter win from Tim Sullivan, scored 53 points to outdistance the field and win their first-ever title.

Spokane's University was second with 40, Mead was third with 39, Franklin had 34 and Richland was fifth with 31.

The fact that Pasco won its invitational was no shocker. The catch was how the Bulldogs did it. Coach Eric Kelly had expected points in the mile from Adam Leahy and a bushel of shotput and jump points from Greg Travis to go along with his sprint points.

But Leahy cramped up in the mile and didn't even make the top eight. And Travis, hobbled by an ankle injury and a sprained finger, missed the spotput and the long jump(he was third in the triple jump at 44-6).

That meant Pasco's sprint corps had to deliver. Kelly was on thin ice there, too-Sullivan's tendons were bothering him, and Nate Hill had a tight hamstring. Not to worry. Pasco started its run for the money with a meet-record 42.31 in the 400 relay. The highlight of that win was the second leg, where Hill matched Noji stride for stride.

Then Sullivan did it. First he won the 400 in 48.33, shaking off a rapid start by Shadle Park's Rob Fabien. Sullivan sprinted by Fabien with 150 meters to go, and that was that. In the 200 meters, Noji was too swift for the field. But Sullivan held off Mead's Scott Naccerato for second place to give the Bulldogs eight more points. Hill got fourth in the 100 and the 400, David Hawes snuck in with a sixth (6-2) in the high jump, and Pasco sealed it victory with a swift 3:21.61 in the 4x400 relay.

Impressive was the perfect word for Noji. In the high jump he progressed from 6-6 to 7-2 in 10 minutes. He missed three times at 7-4, and he didn't threaten his PR of 7-4 1/2 or the national record of 7-5 1/4. No matter. "He unbelievable," said Richland Coach Jim Qualheim. "He's only 5 foot 8 inches, but when he jumps it's like he has ballistic missiles in his legs."

Noji, who just signed a letter of intent with the University of Washington, also came back to win the 200 and run a 50.3 leg on Franklin's fifth-place 4x400 relay team. But he scarcely overshadowed Pullman's Timm Rosenbach and Woodinville's John Quade.

Rosenbach became the 1985 national leader in the javelin with a meet-record heave of 225-1. The toss broke his 1984 Pasco Invite record of 224-6. Quade emerged as another national leader, besting Richland's Bob Haggard to win the 800 in 1:50.83. That mark narrowly missed the state record 1:50.4 set by Connell's Greg Gibson in 1972.

Other invite highlights:

* Haggard couldn't stay with Quade in the 800, but he did win the mile in a fine 4:22.5

* Kennewick's Louis Sanders won the triple jump at 46-0, nearly two feet above his previous best.


After learning his girls won the team title at the 24th annual Pasco Invitational track meet Saturday, Kamiakin Coach Ron Redden was hesitant to single out anyone as the outstanding performer.

Redden wasn't trying to dodge the issue. It's just that Kamiakin's performance was so close to flawless Saturday that the Braves' coach didn't want to talk up anyone without talking up everyone. The Braves scored 81 points to easily outdistance runner-up Rainier Beach (with 68) and third-place Mead(44 points)

"This was really a team thing," Redden said. "All these girls love to compete. To do well in a meet like this, you have to be willing to compete up to the level of the competition." Redden indicated he thought the Braves had a shot at the team title, but he didn't necessarily have a spot reserved in the Kamiakin trophy case. "Before a meet like this, you just don't know what to expect from a team like Rainier Beach'" Redden said. "Right now I'm just happy for our kids and my assistant coaches. We're very excited about what's possible the rest of the season.

The most visible Kamiakin performer was sprinter-hurdler Brenda Harding. The tenacious sophomore won the 400-meter dash easily in a state-leading 57.63 (one of four girls meet records set during the day-long event), anchored the Braves's winning (and meet and school-record setting) 4x400 meter relay team, won the 100-meter hurdles and placed second in the 200 meters. "I wanted to get under 57.0 today," Harding said after her win in the 400. "But I guess this is close enough for now. I'm running faster right now than at the same time last year, so I'm satisfied."

In the hurdles, Harding moved up from third place to first over the final two barriers "to beat Rainier Beach's highly-regarded Rosetta Jones and defending state AA champ Amy Moore from Shorewood. In the 4x400, which sealed Kamiakin's team title, Harding took the baton for the final leg from Tondi Redden (who turned in an excellent 59.7 leg to move her team into contention) about five meters down on Mountain View's Kim Gilla. Gilla heald Harding off until the Kamiakin runner gained a slight advantage with just 80 meters left in the race. Both the Braves (3:59.16) and Mountain View (3:59.38) finished under the old meet record of 4:00.6 set by Sammamish in 1979.

Harding's only defeat came at the hands of phenomenal Rainier Beach ninth grader Freda Everett. Everett took the measure of Grandview's Kathy Herold to win the 100 in 12.24 and beat Harding in the 200 with a 25.46. The two individual wins(Everett also anchored Rainier Beach's winning 4x100-meter relay) earned the precocious freshman Athlete of the Meet honors, narrowly out-polling Harding.

The Braves' Kim Phillips led the javelin competition from the outset, but was well off even her season's best of 138-0 until her final throw, when she reached a meet and Kamiakin school record of 148-1. And the Braves's Kesha Christensen jumped a life-time best of 5-5 to grab second in the high jump.

The only other meet record set Saturday came from Lewis and Clark's Linda Lester with a 36-11 win in the triple jump(eclipsing her own record of 35-11 set last year). Grandview's Michelle denHoed finally raised her state lead in the high jump to 5-8, after jumping 5-6 in three straight meets, to win that event over Christensen.

Kennewick junior Cara Schur moved herself to the top of the 1985 state ranking with her life-time best 2:15.77 to win the 800 over Kierston Knutsen of North Central. Schur led from the starting gun, battled off one minor challenge by Knutsen with 350 meters to go, and won easily.




April 19, 1986

Two years of painful frustration came to an end for Pasco High distance runner Adam Leahy Saturday when he slipped past Gunnar Hadley's shoulder on the final turn and sprinted to an impressive victory in the boys' two mile event at the Silver Anniversary of the Pasco Invitational track meet.

Leahy, who's been bothered by a painful abdominal muscle injury for the past two years, won the event in a school-record time of 9:25.26, edging Hadley of University High by more than a second. Hadley finished several meters back in 9:26.69.

Leahy's victory accounted for the Bulldogs only points in the boys's meet. Rainier Beach, which also won the girls' team title, earned the boys championship with some overwhelming speed in the sprint event. The Class AA Vikings entered the meet with just seven competitors, but a victory by Cecil Bowie in the 110 meter high hurdles and Davelle Bridges in the 200 was enough to propel them to the team title. Rainier Beach also had a first place relay team and another that finished second.

Mead finished second followed by Lindbergh, Sammamish, John Rogers, Kamiakin and Hanford. John Rogers fifth place finish was due in a large part to the two victories earned by Robert Jefferson. A senior bound for Eastern Washington University on a football scholarship, Jefferson won the 100 meter dash in 10.68 seconds and the long jump with a leap of 22 feet, 6 1/4 inches. For his efforts-he also placed second in the triple jump-Jefferson won the boys' most impressive performance trophy.

Kamiakin was led by Todd Dahlberg's 6-7 leap in the high jump, which was good enough for second place. It was the best leap of Dahlberg's career-by one inch-and matched Dave Stapleman's school record. David Pallies won the high jump at 6-10. The Braves also received a third place effort in the medley relay and a fourth place finish by Scott Bracken in the javelin(169-6).

Hanford's surprising seventh place finish in a meet dominated by Class AAA teams was accomplished with the help of Bobby Weissenfels' second place finish in the javelin(181-6), Chris Busselman's third place effort in the shot put, Tim Hancock's fourth place finish in the 300 intermediates and Jerry Bailey's fourth place time of 15.45 in the highs.

Richland was paced by pole vaulter Tom Rude, who soared 13-6 to finish fourth and high jumper Jason Walton, who was fifth at 6-5.


Brigid Sterling, a 5 foot 3, 94 pound wisp, shattered two meet records in winning the mile and two mile to headline an afternoon of eye-opening performances in the 25th annual Pasco Invitational track meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium.

A Roosevelt High senior, Sterling captured the mile in 4:58.92 and the two mile in 10:44.16 to easily win both events and waltz away with the girls' most outstanding athlete award. Sterling's mile time broke the old meet record of 5:04.16 established by Chris Slentz of Lewis & Clark in 1984. Her two mile performance eclipsed the 3 year old standard of 11:07.3 held by Leslie Ranstad of Evergreen.

Rainier Beach, a Class AA school located in south Seattle, won the girls' team title by a convincing 17-point margin over defending champion Kamiakin. Rainier Beach scored 58 points. Kennewick, meanwhile, scored 29 points and finished third. A total of 42 teams took part in the girls' meet.

Sterling, who trains by running an average of 35 miles per week, finished her scorching two-mile race before a crowd of more than 3,000 spectators. Libby Tyson of Walla Walla, who fought gamely to stay within striking distance of Sterling, finished second in 11:02.26.

Sterling's victory in the mile was equally impressive. Sterling took an insurmountable lead at the halfway point and cruised to the finish line unchallenged. Lisa Corp of Mead placed second at 5:04.48. Sterling accounted for two of the five record-breaking performances in the girls' division. The others came in the 100-meter hurdles, in which Rosetta Jones of Rainier Beach ran a 14.76 to break the old meet record of 14.93 established by Kamiakin's Brenda Harding in 1985, the 4 x 400 relay event, in which Issaquah dashed to a winning time of 4:58.65 erasing the old standard of 3:59.16 set by Kamiakin last year and Jennifer Bannon broke Brenda Harding's record in the 400 meter dash with a time of 57.49.

Kamiakin earned its second place trophy with the help of a strong showing in the 200 meter dash. Harding, who had earlier placed a disappointing third in the 100 hurdles and who had been disqualified in the 400 because of a false start, captured the 200 in 26.15. Kamiakin also won the 4x200 relay with a time of 1:45.94.

Kennewick's top performances came from Cara Schur, who placed second in the 800 with a time of 2:17.75; Kathy Board, who finished second in the 300 low hurdles and fifth in the highs. Sandra Dickinson tossed the discus 117 feet to finish third.

Pasco received award winning efforts from Heather Trumble, who won the discus with a heave of 123-7; Roslyn Travis, who finished second in the triple jump with a leap of 33-10 and Beth Verbarg, who was fourth in the long jump at 16-11.

Richland's top performances came from Jill McCabe in the discus, where she placed second with a toss of 120-10, and in the shot put, where she finished fifth with a 36 foot effort. Millicent Shaw of Hanford placed second in the 100 highs and third in the 300 lows. Jennifer Lindquist of Sunnyside won the javelin and placed second in the shot put.




April 18, 1987

Three things-Brenda Harding's legs and a dropped baton-kept the Rainier Beach Vikings from winning their second consecutive girls team title at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet. Harding, a Kamiakin senior, set the track ablaze with four first-place finishes to grab the meet's Outstanding Female Athlete Award and lead the Braves to a first-place finish at Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium.

But it wasn't until the final event of the meet-the fourth heat of the 1600 relay, with Kamiakin in lane two and Rainier Beach in lane six-that the title was decided. And that's where the baton was dropped. Rainier Beach led the Braves 42-36 before the start of the race. But on the first handoff, Rainier Beach's Tara Davis and Shawn Davis fumbled the baton, and it fell to the ground. While the Kamiakin foursome of Sherry King, Heather Mills, Jo Shafer and Harding easily outdistanced the field to score the 10 points for first place-and would have done so without the dropped baton-the miscue on the handoff prevented the Vikings from scoring any points, and the Braves won 46-42.

The team title was Kamiakin's second in the last three years, and Braves Coach Ron Redden gave Harding a lot of credit. "That was the key", said Redden. "I think she performed exceptionally well, considering her conditioning. She's not in condition yet. But I knew we'd score a few points if Brenda ran well. Harding, still not 100 percent after having off-season surgery on both legs, ran on the winning 800 and 1600 relay teams and finished first in the 100 meter high hurdles and the 300 meter low hurdles. "I felt great out there," said Harding. "I really didn't know how things would go, with the way my legs were hurting in practice last week."

Rainier Beach Coach Larry Moore said the earlier disqualification of his girls' 800 relay team, which scratched, hurt his team's title chance. "There's no doubt about it," said Moore. "Without our strongest girls in there, that hurt our chances. But this is a good time for those things to happen."

Other than the first-place finishes of Harding and the Braves' two relay teams, Kamiakin's other six points came from Kellee Magnuson's third-place finish in the javelin event. Magnuson was among five of seven Tri-City finalists in the javelin, which was won by Wenatchee's B.J. Kuntz. Kuntz, in her first year of track, threw the javelin 143-11. Kennewick's Joy Stock finished second. Stock said the gusty winds were a bit of a problem, but she still recorded a personal best of 132-2. "I think throwing behind Kuntz helped me," said Stock, who also finished fifth in the shotput for the Lions. Michelle Weissenfels of Hanford finished fourth in the javelin, Doreen Ostler of Richland finished fifth, and Hanford's Brionna Johnson placed sixth.

Rainier Beach's Freda Everett finished first in the 200 meters and ran a leg on the winning 400 relay team to cap a successful comeback. Everett was the outstanding athlete of the 1985 meet as a freshman. But a hamstring injury sidelined her for most of last season. Lewis & Clark's Dory Reeves, just a sophmore, was a double winner Saturday. Reeves won the shotput and discus events for the Tigers.

In the mile, Lindbergh sophomore Kim Alberts passed Lisa Corp of Mead on the backstretch of the third lap to win. Alberts said she tried to stay back as long as possible, but couldn't wait anymore to make her move. "I was surprised at how slow the pace was, " said Alberts. "So I said 'What the heck. I might as well try taking the lead'. " Shadle Park distance star Lisa Dressel, one of the favorites in the 800 and 1600, did not participate in the meet after Dressel left the team Friday.

Only one record was broken during the meet. Rainier Beach's Cynthia Johnson jumped 38-10 3/4 in the triple jump. The Richland Bomber's Jill McCabe scored eight points by placing second in the discus. Her throw of 121-10 set a new Richland school record.


In performance as cool and cutting as the north wind that raked Edgar Brown Stadium throughout the day, Davelle Bridges won the 100- and 200-meter dashes and anchored Rainier Beach to a resounding victory in the 400-meter relay at Saturday's 26th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet.

The only thing ruining a perfect day for Bridges was the Vikings' disappointing finish in the 1,600-meter relay. Even in that race Bridges was sensational, running a blistering opening leg that had the Vikings in first place until Newport and Lindbergh High Schools closed the gap and dropped Rainier Beach to third. Bridge's scintillating performance gave the powerfully muscled senior the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete award and provided the Rainier Beach Vikings with their second straight Pasco Invite team title.

The Vikings with additional help from double winner Cecil Bowie(in the 110 high hurdles and 300 intermediate hurdles) and Romel Williams(second in the 100 and fourth in the 200) scored 69 points, easily outdistancing second-place Ferris by 21 points. Lindbergh, Davis and Kamiakin-which received seomanlike effort from field-event specialist Todd Dahlberg-rounded out the top five teams.

"We like to come here and blow people's doors off," said Williams, referring to the Vikings' perennially strong showing at the meet. "There are only so many meets we point toward, and this is one of them. We come here to do well, and then go with the flow the rest of the way." Said Bridges, "We like to put on a good show." Rainier Beach Coach Larry Moore, however, wasn't that impressed with his team's effort. "Cecil and Davelle are both gifted athletes," said Moore. "But we still didn't perform as well as I would've like. Even so, a win is a win."

Especially to Dahlberg, who outdueled Richland's Jason Walton for first place in the high jump by matching his own personal best of 6 feet, 8 inches. Dahlberg also placed third in the triple jump(43-11) and sixth in the long jump(21-5 1/2). Dahlberg beat Walton, who also cleared 6-8, on the basis of fewer misses. After making 6-8, Dahlberg had the bar raised to 6-10, two inches higher than his own previous best and a half-inch lower than Walton's. "I thought 6-10 was a more significant height to go for than 6-9, " said Dahlberg, who tinkered successfully with his approach-widening it by one step and lengthening it by three-to take advantage of his sprinter's speed and compensate for Saturday's bothersome wind. "The wind just kills you," said Walton, who struggled throughout the day. "The wind threw my approach off and made me peak out before I got over the bar."

The pole vault, won by Jason Perrins of Mead, and the 400-meter dash, won in an eyelash by Micah Ray of Davis, were two of the day's better events. Perrins, whose pole-vaulting has twice been painfully interrupted by broken fingers, won with a vault fo 14-6 and later tried three times at 15-3, hoping to break Dennis Dudley's 13-year-old meet record of 15-1 1/4. He missed badly on his first and third attempts but had the crowd catching its collective breath on his second, which was foiled when he knocked the cross-bar off with his ankle. "I thought I had it on my second attempt," said Perrins. "I felt better the higher I went, but that's when technique becomes more important. I just scraped the bar with my ankle."

Ray nipped Ferris' Harvey Cobbs with a gutty come-from-behind effort in the 400, winning by fractions of a second. "I waited too long to make my move," said Ray, who established himself as the Big Nine favorite with his performance. "But I couldn't bear to take second, so I went for it." Other highlights came in the discus, won by Hazen's Pat Feifer with a heave of 173-8; the 800, won by Moses Lake's Rick Gamez in 1:54.90; the shotput, dominated by Todd Sietvett of Puyallup's Rogers High, whose winning toss beat the second-place finisher by six feet; and the medley relay, in which Kennewick finished second, Kamiakin third and Richland sixth.




April 17, 1988

With one toss remaining in the discus finals at Saturday's Pasco Invitational Track Meet, Pat Feider grabbed a worn out bristle broom and swept the dust off the discus ring. "I wonder if he does much housework?" a spectator wondered outload, laughing. Feider wasn't tidying up, he was making sure he had as much traction as possible before he did nis whirling-dervish imitation and launched his final throw. Moments later, with the ring free of dust and grit, Feider did just that. And in the process he swept the competition under the carpet.

Feider, a strapping 6 foot-6, 230 pound senior from Hazen High, uncorked a final throw of 180 feet to win the discus title and satisfy a large throng of spectators that included his parents, sister, cousin, grandparents and family physician. Feider's throw was four inches short of the meet record yet it was 32 inches farther than runner-up Cheney's, Steve Emtman, best toss and almost 16 feet farther than third-place finisher Bryan Payne's best effort.

As impressive as Feider was during the competition, he raised even more eyebrows during warmups when he bounced several throws into the parking lot at the far end of the discus area. Those warmup tosses, which elicited nervous laughter from his competitors, were far beyond the meet record of 180-4, so why didn't Feider uncork one of similar length during the finals? "I'm really burned out," he explained. "The drive over here wore me out, I threw (Friday) and my knee hurts. I was kind of lackadaisical."

Feider also blamed his subpar performance on his surprise showing in the shotput, which he won with a heave of 62-2 1/2. "The shotput's not my passion," said Feider, whose previous best prior to Saturday was 56-10. "but I surprised myself." With his sweep of the weight events Feider, one of 1,120 athletes to participate in the meet, was named the Invitational's Outstanding Male Athlete.

Feider, however, didn't steal all the headlines. Other standouts included Henry Hall of Richland, Dan Colleran of Hanford and Chris McBride of Kiona-Benton. Hall won the 200-meter dash and finished second behind McBride in the 400. His lickety-split performance lifted the Bombers into a tie with Shadle Park for second place in the team standings. Both teams scored 35 points. Newport won the 39-team meet with 38 points.

Hall won the 200 going away muscling through the corner and bursting down the straightaway to a time of 22 seconds, his best ever. "I felt loose and ran the curve a lot harder than I usually do," he said. "I was moving fast." Hall also motored through the 400, but he wasn't fast enough to beat McBride.

Running together in the fifth and final flight, Hall led for most of the race but tightened up with 40 meters remaining and was passed by McBride, whose finishing kick carried him to a career best of 49.3. It was a stunning victory for McBride, a senior with enough speed to win a blistering race like Saturday's 400 and yet with the endurance to excel at longer distances, which he did last fall when he won the Yakima Valley A District Cross Country Championships.

McBride had dreamed about winning the 400 Friday night and "going back to school as the big guy on the block," a premonition that rang true on Saturday. "I knew I couldn't stay with Henry during the first 200, but if I stayed close I knew I could get him in the last 200," he said. Said Hall, "I locked up. I wanted to run flat out and win, but he crept by me. He was in the inside lane and I couldn't see him. I didn't know he was coming.

Colleran, meanwhile, won the high jump with a leap of 6-6, and barely missed at 6-7. "I thought I could get over," he said, "but I've been having trouble clearing the bar. But I'm happy, especially since I was hoping to place third." Richland's Jason Walton also cleared 6-6, but had more misses than Colleran and placed second.

Walton was one of the state's top jumpers last season when he flirted with 7 feet, but a nagging foot injury suffered during basketball season has slowed his progress this spring. "I'm in no kind of jumping shape," said Walton, who did manage a fourth-place finish in the triple jump. "But I'm capable of making seven feet if I'm healthy. I'm counting on exploding at the end of the year." Alan Romm of Burbank was fourth in the high jump at 6-4.

In other highlights: Hanford's Charlie Symons placed second in the shotput at 53-10; Kamiakin's Dusting Smith finished second in the javelin at 180; Kennewick's Jason Cooke placed third in the 1,600 at 4:22.2 and Dexter Green was third in the triple jump at 45-5 1/2; Pasco's Chris Baker was third in the long jump at 21-9 and Stacy Edwards was fifth in the 200 at 22.7

In other events, Pasco's Terro Bell was fourth in the 110 high hurdles at 14.8 and the Bulldogs' 400 relay team was fourth at 43.6


Prosser's Kelly Blair learned a lesson Saturday: Never run in two track meets 24 hours apart. "Next year when I come here, I want to come in fresh. I want to rest up for this," she said. "I'm really tired. My legs are hurt. I did a lot of jumping this weekend. I can't wanit for Sunday to come. Well, Kelly, Sunday is here. Take the day off. You've earned it.

After winning four events in Friday night's Grandview Invitational, Blair completed her busy weekend by scoring two firsts, a second and a third in Saturday's 27th Annual Pasco Invite. And while Blair admitted she was physically exhausted, her performance was good enough to earn the meet's Outstanding Female Athlete award. "I didn't know if I would get(the award) with a second and a third," she said. "I really didn't think about it beforehand.

Blair began the day by winning the 100-meter high hurdles in 15.2 seconds. Coming out of the blocks with a smooth start, Blair finished .5 seconds ahead of Mt. View's Kelly Kiest. Blair's legs, losing their bounce after all her running and jumping, still managed to carry her to a third-place effort of 5-4 in the high jump and a second-place finish of 17-2.5 in the long jump. Blair finished the day by edging Cynthia Johnson of Rainier Beach in the 300 low hurdles. Blair won in 47 seconds despite the fact that Johnson bumped into her as they entered the final stretch.

The team title went to Rainier Beach with 60 points. Cleveland High of Seattle was second with 44, and Blair-er, Prosser-was third with 34 points. Blair was one of several area athletes to win Saturday. Kamiakin's Heather Mills, Holly McCallum, Jo Shafer and Sherry King teamed to repeat last year's winning performance in the 4x400 relay.

Kennewick's Joy Stock won the javelin with a throw of 127 feet while Richland's Doreen Ostler placed second with a 122. Stock also finished fourth in the shotput. Neither javelin thrower was satisfied with their throws, but agreed for this early in the season they were acceptable.

Rainier Beach was led by Johnson's triple jump victory and her second-place finish in the 300 low hurdles. Harriett Claiborne paced Cleveland to second place by winning the 400 meter dash, and running on the winning 4x100 and 4x200 relay teams.

The day's only other double winners were Lewis & Clark's Dory Reeves(discus and shotput) and Kentwood's Joyce Rainwater(100 and 200 meter dashes). Reeves set a meet record by throwing the discus 143-8. Reeves, who won both events last year as a sophomore, wasn't impressed with her performance. "I'm satisfied to beat the record," said Reeves, "but I felt I could do much better today."

Rainwater won two events that had some tough competition. Rainwater finished ahead of Rainier Beach' Freda Everett and Cleveland's Cheryl Taplin in both races. Taplin broke the meet's 200 record in the preliminaries when she ran a 24.6, and Rainwater surprised herself by beating Taplin twice. "She's great. I wish I could just sit back in the stands and watch her run," said Rainwater. "But we both run in the same events."

Shadle Park senior Lisa Dressel lead from start to finish to win the 1600 meters easily with a 5:14.9 time. Other winners included Coeur d'Alene's Jenny Reese in the 3200, Blanchet's Helen Bajocich in the 800, Wenatchee's Kristin Hatmaker in the long jump, and Mt. View's Kiest in the high jump.

After Prosser's Blair, the next highest area finish was Kennewick with 21 points and eighth place. "I'm really happy," said Kennewick Coach Ted Homme. "We improved in every race we ran. Stock has led our crew, and one thing she did was overcome the pressure of being one of the top five people in her events." Homme also praised Tanya McKean, who finished fourth in both the high jump and triple jump. Stacie Hoitink also did well for the Lions, finishing sixth with a school-record time of 11:21.7 in the 3200 meters.




April 15, 1989

Dory Reeves knows she passed two of her three tests Saturday. She won't know for three weeks if she passed the third. The Lewis & Clark senior scored an A plus in both the discus and shotput at the 28th Annual Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium, placing first and setting meet records in both events. Before her events, Reeves spent the morning at Columbia Basin College taking her American College Test. That score she must wait for. For her athletic efforts, she was named the Outstanding Female Athlete of the meet.

But Reeves wasn't the only standout of the meet on the girls side. Other athletes who turned in outstanding performances included:

* Prosser's Kelly Blair-last year's Female Athlete winner-who finished first in the high jump; long jump and 100 high hurdles. She also placed fifth in the 300 low hurdles to help the Prosser girls finish with 33 points.

* Mt. View's Camara Jones, who finished first in the 200 and 400 meters, and ran the anchor on the winning 800-relay team to lead the Vancouver school to the girls team scoring title with 54 point.

* Tiffany Paup of Sammamish, who won the 300 low hurdles and had a leg on the winning 1600 relay team.

But it was Reeves' two record breaking performances-and the added burden of taking the ACT-takt impressed the coaches enough to vote her the top award. As late as Wednesday, Reeves was considering dropping out of the Invite because of the ACT she was scheduled to take in Spokane Saturday. However, her test was moved to CBC so she could compete. Immediately after the test, she raced over to the stadium, and made her discus flight in time. "My brain was in motion too much. I was thinking too much because of the test," said Reeves. "Then I wasn't thinking about my throws." Her first throw was 116 feet, but it got better from there. She finally uncorked a throw of 160-3, breaking her old mark of 143-8 she set last year at the meet.

Two hours later Reeves won the shotput with a distance of 46-4 in the finals. That broke the record of 46- 1/2 set by Shorewood's Jennifer Ponath in 1983. "The discus record surprised me," said Reeves, who will wait for her ACT results to determine where she goes to college. "I didn't think I'd break 150 feet, which is my personal record. When I got my fourth throw off, it was nice. It didn't even feel like a throw.

Reeve's performance overshadowed Blair's, who was competing in her second invitational in 24 hours. Friday night she won four events at the Grandview Invitational. "I think this year I was not as worn out," said Blair. "But my legs gave out at the end (in the 300 hurdles). Ten events (including two 100 hurdle preliminaries) in 24 hours would be hard on anybody. I just came in today with the attitude of doing my best."

Other area athletes besides Blair also performed well. Lisa Love of Kennewick cam away with the javelin title, letting lose with a throw of 129 feet. "That's not my best," said Love. "I threw 135 the last time, so I was shocked that 129 feet won it." Love's first-place finish helped the Lions score 26 points-enough to tie Ferris and Rainier Beach for fifth in the team standings. Other Lions who scored included Kim Davidson's third place finish in the 300 hurdles and fifth in the 100 hurdles; Lisa Smitch's fourth in the discus at 115-6 and Stacie Hoitink's fourth in the 3200 meters. Hoitink's time of 11:12 cut 11 seconds off of her personal record, as her decision to keep up with eventual winner Carissa Seward of Goldendale paid off. "I'm really pleased with our performances," said Kennewick Girls Coach Ted Homme. "In this kind of meet with this competition you go out and beat yourself. Instead of one dominating athlete, things are happening all over for us."

Pasco's Becky Zaro claimed fourth in the 200 meters, while Connell's Stephanie Ochoa had fourths in both hurdle races. Burbank's Sheila Smith had an impressive performance, placing second to Blair in the long jump at 17-4 1/4. Kamiakin's Dawn Phillips placed fourth in the discus, while the Braves' 800 relay team placed sixth.

Sarah Schwald's 1600 victory helped Mead finish second as a team with 47 points, while Cleveland, led by the Eagles' 400 relay win placed third at 38. Sammamish was fourth with 37 points. But it was Reeves who scored the most points with coaches and fans with her two records and the award. "(Winning the award) surprised me," said Reeves. "I kind of thought Blair would get it after she won three events. But I broke two records so I guess that's good enough." Good enough? She aced her track and field exam.


Saturday's Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium had any number of heroes. There was a discus thrower with an arm of steel, a triple jumper with new shoes, a middle-distance champion reluctant to speak to the press, and a tireless two-mile champion with a ponytail.

The discus thrower was North Central's Matt Schaffer, who was named the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete after winning his specialty with a record-setting heave of 186 feet, 10 inches. Schaffer's toss, which topped his previous best by more than 14 feet, erased the former meet record of 180-4 set by Issaquah's David Lavine in 1986. Schaffer, whose father is a former NAIA national discus record holder, weighs only 180 pounds, considerably less than most of the meet's top discus throwers. He overcomes his size disadvantage with determination and technique. My goal was to break the record," said Schaffer. "I train all year long, specializing in the discus. I don't compete in any other sports for in any other events. I've got discus throwing in my genes."

According to Schaffer, he might have broken Lavine's record by even more if not for Saturday's occasional blustery winds. "The wind was a detriment to all the throwers," he said. "It was picking the discus up, turning it over and pushing it down. Without the wind I think I could've thrown over 190 feet, maybe over 195." Schaffer's record throw made a soothsayer out of meet director, John Crawford, who, sensing a monumental moment in the discus, wisely left his car at home instead of parking it in the lot adjacent to the discus field. Had Schaffer's record throw flown in a straight trajectory, Crawford's car would have been in danger. "My car was safely parked seven miles from here," said Crawford.

The triple jumper with the new shoes was Pasco's Chris Baker, who hopped, skipped and jumped to a first-place distance of 45-5 3/4. He edged runner-up Maurice Handcox of Kamiakin by one-quarter of an inch on his last jump. Baker credited his winning leap with a new pair of spikes and an angry attitude. "My technique's not that good, and my speed's not that great," he said. "But I'd been practicing very hard all week." Baker also competed in Saturday's long jump, but placed a disappointing 19th. "Coach (Dave) Primus told me to put my frustration about the long jump into the triple jump," said Baker. "I also changed my shoes. I think I'll stay with these shoes for awhile," he added.

While Baker was finding untouched sand at the far end of the triple jump pit, Andrew Maris of White River was posting some impressive numbers on stopwatches across the stadium. Maris, the Class AA state cross country champion, beat a strong field in the 1,600 with a time of 4:15.98, narrowly missing the meet record of 4:15 owned by Wilson's Hugh Hazelquist. Maris declined to be interviewed, after his victory. "I'm superstitious," he said. "Every time I give an interview, I get my doors blown off in my next race." Erick Goldman of University Prep, who set the pace in the 1,600 for two laps, finished second behind Maris, but only because the true runner-up Nathan Davis of Mead, was disqualified for running on the inside of the curve. "I ran the last lap in 65 seconds," said Goldman, "but the way Maris smoked by me he must have a kick a helluva a lot faster than that."

Chris Lewis of Mead, who captured the 3,200 with a time of 9:04.67, is a genial as Maris is tight-lipped. Lewis dominated the 3,200, beating second-place finisher Stewart Burnham of Ferris by five seconds. Burnham took the lead from Lewis on the fifth lap, but held it only until Lewis got frustrated with Burnham's slow pace. Once Lewis regained the lead, he took off with a vengeance. "Burnham passed me and slowed down, and I don't like it when someone does that," said Lewis, whose long hair was tied back in a ponytail. "When he did that, I said 'Auuuggghhh,' and took off. It was a good time to start my kick, even if I was 1,000 meters from the finish line." Lewis, who now has two firsts and a second in the Pasco Invite 3,200, was remarkably consistent Saturday. He covered the first mile in 4:31 and the second in 4:33.

In other highlights from the meet, which attracted 1,060 athletes from across the state:

* Eric Fleming of Mead won a dramatic duel with Eric Smith of Bellingham to win the pole vault at 14-6. Fleming won on the basis of fewer misses.

* Pasco's 400 meter relay team of Wade Hawes, Marvel Cooks, Stacy Edwards, and Andre Wren placed second behind Pullman. Pasco traditionally performs well in that event and set the meet record of 42.31 in 1985. "It's our event," said Edwards.

* Deron Alexander of Pullman, a last-second entry, won the 100-meter dash in 11.29 seconds. He became the meet's sprint star after Larry Goncalves of Ferris pulled up with an injured hamstring. Alexander is a transfer student from Canyon High in Texas. A standout football player, he rushed for 1,887 yards for Canyon High last fall.

* Pete Kaligis of Bellingham dominated the shotput, winning by almost four feet. Charlie Symons of Hanford was third. "I was scared to death," said Kaligis. "But once I got in the ring, the adrenalin kicked in and I was all right."

* Mead won the boys team title with 48 points. Rounding out the top five teams were Mt. View(37), Bellingham(24), Central Valley(23) and Pasco(21)

* Other top marks from Tri-City competitors came from: Richland's Dave Berg(fifth, discus); Pasco's Wade Hawes(sixth, 110 high hurdles); Pasco's 1,600 relay team(fifth); Kamiakin's Loren Myers(sixth, 400); Kennewick's Matt Szendre(fifth, high jump); Pasco's Edward(seventh, 200); Hanford's Dan Colleran(fifth, long jump) and Kennewick's Monyay Green(fifth, triple jump)



April 14, 1990

Jason Baskett is almost as lethal to meet officials as he is to competition. On Saturday, the muscular Mead senior destroyed the competition in both the shotput and the discus to earn the meet's outstanding male athlete award at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet. Two boys meet records were broken, one by Baskett in the discus, the other by Andy Maris of White River in the 1,600. Other standouts included: Kentridge' Kyle Proctor, a double winner in the 100 and 200 meters; Pasco's Wade Hawes, who outran the competition in the 110 high hurdles, and Chris Baker, who outdueled Kennewick's Monyay Green in the triple jump; and Prosser's Eric Anderson, who won the 800 meters.

Basket was the best-and most dangerous-of Saturday's performancer. It was his third discus toss that showed why he is one of the nation's top prep weightman. Gathering himself in the discus ring, Baskett whirled like a top and let the discus loose with a loud grunt. The platter soared through the air in the general direction of a meet official, who was sitting in a chair at the northeast corner of the discus area. The official, at first thinking he was beyond Baskett's range, suddenly realized the discus was headed his way. He scrambled out of his chair and scampered up a nearby hillside as the discus landed in the gravel a few feet away. The throw set a new meet record of 189 feet, 7 inches. "I had the potential to throw better if the flight(of the discus) had been better," said Baskett. "If my flight was better I'd have had a 195. By the state meet I should be over 200." Baskett also won the shotput with a heave of 64-10 1/2. "I wanted to do 62 and I did 64-10 1/2," said Baskett. "That's a personal record for me. It's also a foot better than what I did at Arcadia(Calif.) last week."

Andy Maris, one of the nation's top prep distance runners, set his meet record with a time of 4:14.1 in the 1,600. He did it with the help of Mead's Nathan Davis, who spent almost the entire race on Maris's outside shoulder. Davis "kind of bothered me," admitted Maris, who like Baskett was still recovering from the prestigious meet in Arcadia last week. "If I ran the way I wanted to, I would have dropped him on the second lap." The 1,600 was held during the hottest part of the day, which sapped the strength of the runners. "I think (Andy) got a little taste of his own medicine," said Davis. "he always rides on everybody's shoulder. I knew I was bothering him." But only until 300 yards remained, which is when Maris began his devasting kick and pulled away. Davis finished three seconds behind Maris.

Pasco's Wade Hawes surprised himself and Bulldog Coach Dale Fuller with his win in the 110 high hurdles. Hawes shot out of the blocks like greased lightning, leaving Lindbergh's Seth Spencer, one of his top challengers, in his wake. Spencer was slowed when his starting blocks slipped. "I heard somebody's blocks go off," said Hawes. "I thought they might call it back." But the race wasn't restarted and Hawes concentrated on the hurdles in his path. "I thought 'God, he looks great' ," said Fuller. "He was the first runner popping over each hurdle. He was ready."

While other events were going on around them, Baker and Green were locked in a tremendous battle for the triple jump title. Baker, who had to interrupt his preliminary jumps to run in the 300 intermediate hurdles, came back to finish the triple jump prelims with a leap of 45-4. In the finals, Green extended himself on his second jump and took the lead at 45-6. On his last jump Baker gave it all he had, landing in the pit 46-5 1/2 from the takeoff stripe. Baker won last year under remarkably similar circumstances. Green was more disappointed with the outcome. "That was a tough way to lose," said Green. "but I should be at 47-48 feet right now. I'll get it next week."

Other area athletes who fared well Saturday included:

* Hanford's Dan Colleran, whose second-place long jump of 22-4 1/4 set a school record. Colleran also finished fifth in the high jump at 6-4

* Burbank's Jerrod MacPherson, who placed second in the javelin (178-1), fifth in the discus (148-3), and sixth in the shotput (50-5 1/4)

* Richland's Dave Berg (discus, 148-9) and Dave Gentry (high jump, 6-4) and Kamiakin's Loren Meyers (400, 50.1), each of whom placed fourth.

* And the Pasco foursome of Baker, Gabe DeShazo, Joe Nelson, and Robbie Lugenbeal, who placed sixth in the 1,600 relay.


The 400 meters, a lung-searing one-lap sprint, is the most difficult event in track and field. Camara Jones, a senior at Mountain View High in Vancouver, Wash., is among the finest high school 400 runners in the country, but she hates the race. Jones loves being first across the finish line, however, and that's what she was at Saturday's Pasco Invitational Track Meet. Not once, but twice. Jones won the 400 in meet-record time and followed that with an easy victory in the 200. Not bad for a girl who started the day lunging across the finish line and crashing to the track while anchoring the Thunder's 800-meter relay team. Jones, who bruised an abdominal muscle in the tumble, was named the meet's outstanding female athlete, no easy feat considering two other girls set meet records during the daylong affair.

Carrie Moller of Rogers(Spokane) and Danielle Marshall of Lake Washington also set records. Moller won the 3,200 in 10:41, nudging Brigid Sterling's 10:44.16 out of the record book. NOTE: This was incorrectly reported by the paper as a meet record as Sterling's mark was for two mile thus her converted mark to 3200 is 10:40.6. Marshall captured the 100 in 11.8 erasing the previous record of 11.9 held by two runners. Another meet record was threatened by Sarah Schwald of Rogers, who won the 1,600 in 4:59.1, two-tenths of a second off the record. Schwald also was second in the 800. Jessica Brathovd to Tenino was second to Schwald in the 1,600 but evened the score by winning the 800.

Tri-City athletes also were well represented on the victory stand. Kennewick's Lisa Smitch won the discus with a school-record toss of 130 feet, 5 inches, while her teammate, Lisa Love, dominated the javelin throw with a first-place launch of 136-8. With their help, Kennewick finished second behind Sammamish in the girls team standings. Sammamish compliled 78 points, 40 more than Kennewick (38), Rogers (36) and Lake Washington (33.5) rounded out the top four teams. Smitch unleashed her winning throw on the first of her six tosses. "I was nervous," she admitted. "My adrenalin was really flowing and I just let it fly. When they measured it, I was astonished."

Other Tri-City athletes who excelled Saturday were:

* Pasco's Stephanie Ochoa, who placed second in the 100 high hurdles (15.4) and second in the 300 low hurdles (45.6). She finished one-tenth of a second behind the winner in both races. The Bulldogs' 400 relay team of Trinity Aldous, Wendy Shullins, Ochoa and Becky Zaro also placed second while Aldous finished sixth in the 100 (12.7)

* Richland's Celeste Stutheit, who finished second in the 100 (12.2) and third in the 200 (25.9).

* Kennewick's Myrna Kinsey, who was second in the triple jump (35-7) and Kim Davidson, who was third in the 300 hurdles (46.1) and fourth in the 100 hurdles (15.7)

* Kamiakin's Jill Willis, who was fourth in the 100 (12.5)

* In addition, Prosser's Marcy Yule won the long jump (17-10 1/2) and was third in the triple jump (35-2)

Jones, however, was the star of the meet. In the 400, Jones scorched the track at Edgar Brown Stadium with a time of 56.4 seconds, eclipsing the meet record of 56.9 set by Cleveland's Harriet Claiborne in 1988. After finishing the race Jones, her chest heaving and her face streaked with sweat, went immediately to a first aid station, where she found a bag of ice, clutched it to her aching abdomen and laid down in a patch of shade. "It feels like someone's stabbing me," she said, describing the pain. Two hours later she won the 200 in 24.6. Jones put forth a "heroic effort," said her coach, Bob Procive. "I was ready to pull her out of the 200 because she was in so much pain, but she talked me out of it. And once she got in the starting blocks, she forgot all about it. She's a coach's dream." Jones was given an engraved clock for being named the meet's outstanding female athlete. She plans on hanging it in her bedroom. What a perfect gift for someone who measures success not in aching muscles, but in ticks of the clock.



April 13, 1991

Sun, suntan lotion and impressive marks highlighted the30th Annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium. One athlete not only set a meet record but also tied her national mark. Another helped lead his team to an upset win over Mead. And as usual, a few Tri-City athletes grabbed a few individual titles. Richland's Celeste Stutheit(long jump), Prosser's Eric Anderson(800 meters), Kamiakin's Loren Myers(400 meters) and Kennewick's Monyay Green(triple jump)--all cam away with individual titles.

Coeur d'Alene junior Corrisa Yasen and Kentwood senior Ernie Conwell were named the meet's outstanding athletes. Yasen set a meet record in the high jump, clearing the bar at 6-foot. It was a mark she had previously recorded this season, and is the best in the nation thi year among high school girls.

Conwell won just one event-the shotput-and finished third in the javelin. But in a boys' meet that had no multiple winners, Conwell's performance was enough to impress the coaches who voted. Conwell and his Kentwood teammates scored enough points(43) to unseat Greater Spokane League power Mead(36.33 points) as the reigning Invite champion. It wass also the first time Mead had lost a meet in the last three years. The Sammamish girls, behind Tiffany Paup's hurdles sweep, won the girls title with 50 points.


Kentwood's Ernie Conwell was surprised when he was named the Pasco Invitational's Outstanding Male Athlete of the Meet. "Maybe if I had won the javelin, shotput and discus I wouldn't be surprised," said Conwell. The senior scored a victory in the shotput, finished third in the javelin and didn't compete in the discus. But the boys' portion of the Invite was wide open Saturday, with no one collecting more than one individual title. Conwell most likely garnered the trophy when it was revealed he and his Conqueror teammates had dethroned Mead for the team title, outscoring the Spokane school 43-36.33. "Our team is good," said Conwell. "Hopefully we'll win at state. Everybody's going to be watching and wondering how Kentwood is in the lead. But we're going to win events they won't see, like the javelin, the shot, the discus and pole vault."

Well, maybe not the pole vault. That could go to Ferris' Jason Bozanich. The Spokane senior had the best shot of winning the top athlete award had his gamble paid off. Bozanich, the defending Invite champ in the pole vault, was intent on breaking the standing record of 15-1 1/4. His problem: the event dragged on all day. It began at 10 a.m., but by the time he entered the competition, it was 5:10 p.m. The competition had been narrowed by then, and Bozanich tried his first vault at 14-6. He missed. He missed again, but finally cleared on his third try. Bozanich then passed at 14-9 while Bellingham's Jake Erickson and Walla Walla's Theron Baker cleared that height. Bozanich then passed at 15-0 while the other two failed in three attempts. "I wanted to go 14-6, then 15-6," he said. "But my coach wanted me to get the record first at 15-3. Bozanich couldn't do it, though twice he cleared the bar only to havee his chest hit the bar. "I spent the last two weeks just thinking about this," said Bozanich. "I just was going to blow that record away. Some days things just don't go right. This was one of them."

Things went right for Bellingham's Sam Alexander, who came in with a state best 4:17.8 to win the 1,600. Alexander waited to make his kick coming out of the final turn. "I wanted to go faster the first 800," said Alexander. "I didn't know if I had that much of a good kick left in me. I always have a good kick in the final 100. But I didn't think it would be that much."

Things also went right for three area athletes:

* Prosser's Eric Anderson came out victorious in one of the meet's most talented events, the 800 meters where some of the state's best were competing. Anderson started the race trailing in eighth through the first lap. But entering the first turn, Anderson kicked in passing the group until 300 meters later he had the lead for good. "I wanted to go 55 or 54 seconds on the first lap," said Anderson. "but I was about 56. I probably would have kicked with 300 to go, but I saw I was going to get boxed in so I had to kick it earlier." Anderson's time of 1:54.53 is the best in the state this year.

* Kamiakin's Loren Myers beat his Big Nine nemesis, Moses Lake's James Swanson, to win the 400 meters. Myers and Swanson found out earlier in the day that defending Invite champ Mike Rillo of Lynnwood would not compete because of a pulled muscle. "Swanson and I would have pushed him," said Myers. As it was Myers held his own and caught Swanson-the defending state champion-halfway through the race on the backstretch. Going into the final turn, the race was already his. "I knew I could beat Swanson today when I saw him run the 200 earlier," said Myers. "He was tired. I just didn't want to pass him to early."

* Kennewick's Monyay Green raised his state-best mark in the triple jump, winning the event with a leap of 47-4. "I was going for the record (49-4 1/2) and I didn't get it," said Green. "I had been looking into the pit on my approach most of the day. The last two times I looked up and it worked. Green blew away his competition by 3 feet, 10 inches.

* Other area athletes who performed well included: Hanford's Darin Ladd, whose 40.36 time was good for third place in the 300 hurdles. Kennewick's 4x100 relay team finished third at 44.11. Kamiakin's 4x400 relay team finished third at 3:28.37. Kennewick's Tyler Clary, in his first outing of the year, tied for second with Kentwood's Jeff Dovick at 6-4 in the high jump.

* Richland's Brian Lehman, who despite running to three different events, was able to continually come back to the long jump and placed second with a 22-5 mark-a quarter of an inch from first. Lehman at one time looked like he came away with a meet-winning jump, but he slipped backwards and officials had to mark where his hand landed.


About the only thing to stop Coeur d'Alene's Corrisa Yasen was her spikes. Nothing else did during Saturday's meet. Not the opening ceremonies parade of athletes marching 10 feet by her. Not even Lee Greenwood's Proud to be an American blaring on the public address system. And by the time Yasen was done, her mark was All-American in the high jump. Yasen cleared the high jump bar at 6-foot, setting a Pasco Invitational Track Meet record at Edgar Brown Stadium. The mark also repeated her national best.

In addition the 5-11 junior won the 400 meters in 58.28 seconds and placed third in the long jump at 16-11 to earn the meet Outstanding Female Athlete of the Meet award. Yasen went through the early part of the competition with ease in the high jump, clearing both 5-6 and 5-8 on her first tries. But by the time she was ready for a try at 5-10, all other events had stopped as athletes began the opening ceremonies procession. Yasen continued. She cleared 5-10 on her second attempt, and did the same at 6-0 with everyone watching. "I could hear everybody walking by me and talking," said Yasen. "It was kind of distracting." She failed in three attempts at 6-2.

In her 400 win, she was the only runner who clocked in under a minute. "I hadn't run under a minute all year," said Yasen. "I thought someone was running next to me the whole race, but I must have imagined it." Only Richland's Celeste Stutheit, who won the long jump with 17-9 1/2, could keep Yasen from a possible triple win. Well, Stutheit and Yasen's shoes. On a long jump attempt, Yasen got her hand in front of her foot and her spikes ripped her hand open.

Yasen wasn't the only multiple winner Saturday. Lynnwood's Shawna Harrison won both the shotput and discus titles, and Sammamish's Tiffany Paup won both hurdles events. Harrison repeated her shotput title of a year ago with a 44- 1/2 mark. "I had a personal best," said Harrison. "I wanted to go for the record but I was off."

Paup outdistanced the field, which included an ill Stephanie Ochoa of Pasco, to win easily despite the heat on the track. "I'm just really drained," said Paup. "The track kind of feels like it's melting a bit. I felt really lethargic and needed to push myself." Ochoa was worn out from the earlier 100 high hurdles final and the javelin final by the time the 300 hurdles came around. She ran out of gas on the final 20 meters. "I didn't feel good," she said. "I blacked out on the final couple of hurdles. I don't even remember the finish. But I'm happy with my 100 hurdles and javelin." Ochoa finished third in the 100 highs and wound up fourth in the javelin.

Paup's two victories helped Sammamish win the team title with 50 points. University finished second at 44 points, while Lindbergh and Richland finished tied for third with 40 points. Stutheit paced the Bombers, collecting the area's only win in the girls portion of the meet in the long jump. "My goal for the end of the year is to jump 19-7," said Stutheit. "In practice I've been consistently jumping 18's." The Richland sophomore also collected two third-place finishes in the 100 and 200 meters.

Lake Washington's Danielle Marshall, who tied a meet record with an 11.9 in the preliminaries, finished first in the 100 finals, while Sammamish sophomore Stacy Sparks blazed to a 25.36 first-place finish in the 200. "They worked me hard," said Stutheit. "You look at the stat sheet to see where you're sitting before the race and you get psyched out sometimes. I just should have run my race."

Richland's Coach Jim Qualheim was happy with his team's placing. "It looks good," he said. "We had some real bright spots. We figured Celeste would run what she did. But I think the highlight was the mile relay." Sara Moore, Lia Minelli, Jenay Yarger and Nicole Filkowski combined in the 4x400 relay to place second at 4:10.31. Yarger also placed individually, racing to a 1:00.93 time in the 400 for a third-place finish. Kennewick's Dee Balderson finished second for the Lions in the discus, hitting a throw of 123-4.



April 18, 1992

Coeur d'Alene's Corissa Yasen wasn't the Female Athlete of the Meet at the 31st Annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet, but she did lead the Vikings to the team title. It took a record-setting performance from Lake Washington sprinter Danielle Marshall to keep Yasen from earning the outstanding individual award for the second straight year.

Yasen won the high jump, long jump, ran a leg on the 4x400 relay team that finished second and was third in the 200 Saturday afternoon at Edgar Brown Stadium. "I was kind of making up for the high jump," Yasen said of her 18-6 1/4 long. Last year I did good in the high jump and crummy in the long jump. This year it was the other way around." The crowd anticipating Yasen challenging the national record of 6-3 in the high jump but she missed her three attempts at 5-10 and settled for a first-place finish at 5-8. "I'm a little bit disappointed," said Yasen, who has accepted a scholarship to attend Purdue. "But you can't jump good all the time. Maybe I put too much pressure on myself."

Marshall, on the other hand, was putting pressure on the rest of the field in the sprints. The two-time defending state champion in the 100 meters sped to a meet record of 10.80 to win her third Pasco Invite title and also finished first in the 200 in a time of 24.86-one-tenth of a second off the meet record. "I wanted to concentrate on the start," Marshall said of her record-setting 100. "In the prelims I came out swerving and I wanted to come straight out. I'm satisfied. The way I look at it is I wanted to go out with some records."

But it took a second-place finish by Marshall that drew the most applause from the crowd. Marshall anchored the Kangaroos' 4x100 meter relay team that finished second, .03 seconds behind Richland. Marshall and Richland's Celeste Stutheit battled down the home-stretch with Stutheit winning by a lean. Stutheit took the baton from Liz Heaston with a five-meter lead and held off the hard-charging Marshall over the last 25 meters. The smile across her face made it clear how she felt. "I'm so happy," Stutheit said. "I could hear her. She has a distinct way of breathing. At first I couldn't her her but she must have been catchiing up."

Stutheit also had third place finishes in the long jump and the 100 meters to lead the Bombers to fourth place in the team standings. Stutheit, who won the Class AAA championship in the long jump last year, was a little disappointed in her 17-8 1/2 jump Saturday. I had 18 feet as you measure from the jump." Stutheit said. "I was behind the board every time. My form was there but I was taking off way behind the board. I'll just have to shake that off and go for the state title. Other Richland placers were Sara Moore(fourth in the 400), Jenay Yarger(sixth in the 800) and the 4x400 relay team of Moore, Alyssa Fishback, Lia Minelli and Yarger was third.

Kamiakin freshman Fran Green led the Braves to a fifth-place finish. Green finished second in the 100, second in the high jump and ran a leg on the Braves' 4x100 relay team that finished fourth and finished sixth in the 200. Green tied a personal best with a 5-6 high jump and ran a 12.35 in the 100. "I'm very surprised," Green said of her effort in the 100. "I didn't think I'd do that good. I was hoping for third, maybe fourth. Kamiakin was also boosted by Jamie Owens, who finished second in the javelin with a throw of 128-8.

While the Class AAA girls received most of the notoriety, the smaller schools also had individuals that turned in impressive performances. Prosser's Lisa Pike won the openb 400 in a time of 1:00.19, edging Karen Vann of Lynnwood by .01. "I could hear and I could see her out of the corner of my eye," Pike said of the final 200 meters of the race. "That's my best so far this year. It feels great."

Connell's Leslie Price also had a good Invite-with a fourth place finish in the high jump(5-5) and a sixth place finish in the 100 high hurdles(16.53). Burbank's Shakila Wilson was fifth in the 300 hurdles, despite having to jump over Walla Walla's Seville Broussard who had a big lead but fell in the final stretch and into Wilson's lane. "I did pretty good considering I had to jump over her too," Wilson said. "It knocked me off stride. I ran 47.7 at state last year and I wanted to beat that." Wilson finished with a time of 47.82. Hanford's Tiffanie Propson was sixth in the 300 meter low hurdles with a time of 48.18.


Chelan's Nathan Boyd and Boise's Spencer Hill made great first impressions at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet Saturday. The Kennedy boys were just happy to get another chance to make an impression. Boyd edged out Hill for the Male Athlete of the Meet award, while Kennedy took the team title, beating Lewiston 44-39.

Those were just some of the highlights of the boys' meet, which also included:

* Prosser's Nick Shaw winning the triple jump with a 45-9 mark.

* Kennewick's Tyler Clary upsetting Mark Munns of West Valley of Spokane for the high jump title.

First, though, the newcomers. Boyd won the meet's top award virtually on the strength of setting the only record, albeit impressive. The Chelan Billygoat sophomore broke the pole vault record-previously held by Hanford's Dennis Dudley at 15-1 1/4--with a vault of 15-2. It was, Boyd said, the second greatest moment he had ever had in track. "Next to winning the nationals in the decathlon when I was 15," he said. The victory came amid one of the best pole vault competitions in recent years. Twelve vaulters cleared 13 feet, and three--Boyd, Blanchet's Bryan Madche and Coeur d'Alene's Ryan Wing--remained after clearing 14-6.

But Madche and Wing missed all three of their attempts at 15 feet, while Boyd missed his first two. "The wind was taking me into the bar so I decided to lower my grip," said Boyd, who earlier in the day had finished fourth in the 110 high hurdles final. But Boyd cleared 15 feet with room to spare. Already clinching the win, he consulted with Chelan Coach Mark Anderson, then decided to try 15-2 and get the Invite record. Because it was so high, it took officials some time to get the bar steady with the wind blowing. With all eyes in the stadium watching--including 58 runners in the 3,200 meters who were at the starting line and had stopped to watch before their race began--Boyd cleared the bar on his first attempt to get the record as the crowd roared. He then opted to stop. "I felt I was getting too tired," said Boyd. "It was our(Boyd and his coaches) decision."

Meanwhile Hill pulled off the tough double of winning both the 1600 and 3200 meters. Hill's Boise team was making its first Invite appearance and he ran an impressive 4:15.75 to win the 1600 going away. He then held off Lewiston's Jason Uhlman with a 9:19.30 time in the 3200. The victory in the 3200 was sweet for Hill. "Uhlman's the three-time Idaho state cross country champion," Hill said. "I've never beat him in anthing over a mile until today."

Kennedy won the team title despite just getting two first-place finishers--Calvin Shaw in the 200 meters and the 4x100 relay team. Kennedy's Coach Dick Ryan was just happy to be in Pasco. "We haven't been here in 10 years," Ryan said. "I called (meet director) John (Crawford) last fall to see about coming back. I knew with the number of schools here it would be difficult. Crawford let the Lancers into the meet when Ryan convinced him that he had some premier athletes this season.

Shaw won the triple jump by staying consistently in the 44 to 45 foot range. "As long as I stayed consistent I had a feeling there was a good chance I could win," said Shaw, who also placed sixth in the long jump. "I felt good doing that against AAA competition."

Clary and Munns were the only two left in a struggle for the high jump title. Both had cleared 6-4, then took divergent paths. Clary asked for, then cleared 6-5. Munns, the state leader with a 6-8, decided to pass on 6-5. Both jumpers, however, missed 6-6 on all three attempts, giving Clary the win. "It didn't surprise me that I got 6-5," Clary said. "But it did surprise me that I beat him. I thought he'd do a lot better. My approach felt good today. The jumps at 6-6, I just got into the bar."

Clary's teammate, Dean Crockett, was the area's next highest placer with a third in the 400(51.3) and a third in the 200(23.4). "I was hoping to be under 51 seconds," Crockett said after the 400. He used a strong finish to get his time. "I was surprised because that's usually my worst part of the race. Normally the first 200 is my best.

Other local placers included Pasco's Theo Hurley(sixth in the 200), Richland's John Anguiano(fourth in the 400) and Kamiakin's Kenn Currie(fourth in the high jump).



April 17, 1993

Richland Coach Jim Qualheim had high hopes entering the 32nd annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium. His team didn't disappoint despite the cold, windy and rainy weather. The Bombers left with a first-place trophy, a second-place trophy and the combined championship. For the day, the Richland girls topped Walla Walla by 10 points to win the girls championship while the Bomber boy finished with 48 points, 17 behind champion Mead.

While Richland was dominating the team competition, Blanchet's Bryan Madche was wowing the crowd with a 16 foot pole vault, smashing the record set last year by Chelan's Nathan Boyd. The Richland girls used a solid performance by senior Celeste Stutheit mixed with a number of other top times from the supporting cast to earn the victory. "This team reminds me of the 1984 boys team," Qualheim said. "They're well rounded and really hard workers. If anyone typifies the blue collar work ethic, it's this team." Stutheit scored first place finishes in the 100 and long jump and also fran the anchor leg on the 4x200 relay team that finished second. Besides Stutheit, 10 other girls brought home medals including the 4x400 relay team which finished first.

Walla Walla's Seville Broussard earned the Outstanding Female Athlete of the meet after winning the high jump, the 100 high hurdles and the 300 low hurdles. On the boys' side, two big records fell, Richland and Pasco finished in the top 10, and the Mead boys reclaimed the team title. Hoquiam's Michael Galeana kicked hard at the end to overtake Mead's Matt Davis and win the boys 1600 meters in a record time of 4:13.91--besting White River's Andy Maris' 1990 mark of 4:14.1

But the highlight of the day was Madche, who shattered the year-old pole vault mark with a vault of 16 feet to take the Outstanding Male Athlete honors. Boyd held the mark for a year at 15-2, after Hanford's Dennis Dudley had held it since 1974 at 15-1. But Madche wasted little time, clearing 15-3 on his first attempt. He then went for 16 feet and cleared it on his third try. He missed three times at 16-2 3/4.

The Bomber boyss were second thanks to a discus victory by sophomore Kevin Moore, an 800 win by junior John Anguiano, and a 4x400 relay title to cap the evening off. "I thought getting a trophy was a reality," said Qualheim. "So when I said that they should, I thought I'd call it like it is. They're a good team." Pasco, on the strength of Doug Dorton's second(300 hurdles), a third by the 400 relay and a fourth by the 1600 relay team, tied for eighth with 19 points.


Bryan Madche gave new definition to the term "soaring to new heights" Saturday. The Blanchet senior shattered the Pasco Invitational Track Meet pole vault record on his way to clearing 16 feet, earning him the Outstanding Male Athlete of the Meet. "I waited for that jump for a long time," Madche said of the 16 footer. "Sixteen feet for me was a big mental barrier. I've just been nicking it the last couple of months."

Madche's record was one of many highlights that also included:

* Hoquiam's Michael Galeana overtaking Mead's Matt Davis in the final stretch to win the boys 1600 meters and setting a record with a time of 4:13.91. The race featured all four of the 1992 state cross country champions.

* Franklin Pierce's Brandon Shidelar, who was the meet's only double individual winner after taking the long jump and high jump titles.

* The Richland boys taking second place with 48 points, 17 points behind first-place Mead. Sophomore Kevin Moore won the discus with a toss of 167-0, junior John Anguiano won the 800 meters in 1:56.65, and the 4x400 relay team of Randy Fischer, Dave Caldwell, Ryan Oilerman and Anguiano finished first to help the Bombers.

But is was Madche's performance that most will remember. The 6 foot, 150 pounder had battled Chelan's Nathan Boyd last year when Boyd set the meet's pole vault record at 15-2. Madche finished then second at 14-6. This time, though, things were different. Madche had cleared 15-3 on his first attempt in practice Friday at Edgar Brown Stadium, so the record was a real possibility. Boyd was eliminated early, finishing sixth at 14 feet. "Boyd is a tremendous athlete," Madche said. "Obviously his is the best high school decathlete in the nation by a landslide. And since he's a decathlete he has to do a lot of things. This was the first time he's done the pole vault this year.

Meanwhile, Madche entered the competition at 14 feet, clearing the bar on his first attempt. By the time runnerup Scott Nelson had dropped out at 14-6, Madche was left to do things alone. Suddenly the entire stadium crowd was watching and clapping in rhythm for Madche as he went for the record. After studying the bar, he lifted his pole up in the air, let out a groan and sprinted hard down the runway. He planted his pole square into the box and let it lift him easily over the bar to clear 15-3 for the record on his first attempt as the stadium crowd roared. "It didn't hit me that I cleared it until I hit the pads and looked up at the bar," Madche said. Madche then tried 16 feet, and he cleared it on his third attempt. Asked how high he planned to go he responded "As high as they can go." But 16 feet was it. He failed in three attempts at 16-2 3/4-which was a good thing. It was as high as the bars could go.

Meanwhile Galeana showed that classifications means nothing in distance running. The runner from AA Hoquiam outkicked Matt Davis of AAA Mead to win the 1600 in record time. Both are state cross country champions. A third state champ, Ernie Ammons of Class A Ilwaco, finished third. Davis led most of the race, and when Galeana failed to complete a move on the backstretch to overtake him, most had given the race to Davis. "Usually I do that," said Galeana of his temporary breakdown on the final lap. "I could deal with it if I could stay within five or six yards. If I stay with range I could have a shot with my kick." Which is what happened. Galeana kicked hard out of the final turn, and passed Davis by for the win. It achieved a goal for Galeana a little early. "My goal was to beat Davis but to do it at Shelton later this spring," he said.

The Bombers leaned on Anguiano--or more on Anguiano's lean--for the second place finish. In his 800 victory, Anguiano was back in fifth and fading with 200 meters to go when he rallied in the final stretch, overtaking two others and then just outleaning Mead's Greg James at the finish line for the win. "In the corner I thought I was in trouble because I started my kick late," Anguiano said. "But I always count on my kick at the end." It worked well in the 4x400 relay. Fischer, Caldwell and Oilerman kept the team in contention when Anguiano got the baton for the anchor leg, trailing Lewis & Clark by six yards. "That's what I normally ask for," Anguiano said of the distance. He made it up on the backstretch, then ran neck and neck with LC's Ryan Karrer the rest of the way before he outleaned Karrer for the win. "Those two finishes by Anguiano were impressive," said Richland coach Jim Qualheim.

Moore added the discus win, getting his top distance(167-0) on the very first throw. But he stayed consistent throughout. "I tightened up a bit," Moore said. "But I'm starting to come along. I'd like to throw 175 by state." Other area placers included: Pasco's Doug Dorton(second, 300 hurdles), Pasco's third place 400 relay team, Prosser's Nick Shaw(third, triple jump and sixth, long jump), Royal's Kyle Wick(third, high jump), Richland's Oilerman(fourth, 1600), Richland's fourth place medley relay team, Pasco's fourth place 1600 relay team, Kennewick's Leo Slack(fourth, long jump and fifth, triple jump), Prosser's Ryan McClure(sixth, 200), Richland's John Hedengren(sixth, 3200), Kennewick's sixth place medley relay team, Prosser's sixth-place 1600 relay team, Richland's JohnPolzin(sixth, triple jump), Kennewick's Ryan Williamson(sixth, high jump) and Kennewick's Ryan Hill(sixth, discus).


The Richland girls weren't too happy about it, but who can argue with results. The Bombers came to the 32nd Annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet attired in green cotton sweat bottoms and gray sweat shirts with the word Bombers across the front. Other teams came blazoned in brightly colored nylon sweats with the school and nichname spelled out. The Bombers left their nylon sweats home. "We just had a little deal," Jim Qualheim said. "Now I don't know if we'll ever go back."

The Bombers captured the team title for the first time since 1982 behind Celeste Stutheit's first place finishes in the 100 and long jump and ran the anchor leg on the 4x200 relay team that finished second. Sara Moore(400, 1600 relay), Liz Dean(200, 800 relay), Lia Minelli(800, 1600 relay), Tina Cottrell(100 hurdles), Gretchen Newell(discus), Nicole Templeton(javelin), Liz Heaston(1600 relay), Alyssa Fishback(1600 relay), Tara Belsito(800 relay) and Alisa Miller(800 relay) all brought home medals.

Stutheit got things started by edging Kamiakin's Fran Green by .01 to win the 100 title. "My start was a little shaky," said Stutheit, "but I was kicking through the middle. I've been looking forward to this meet. I've been pushing myself, my parents think I've been going too hard. But there isn't any messing up today." The only flaw in Richland's performance was a missed handoff on the anchor leg of the 400 relay. The Bombers were the defending champions in the event but Stutheit never go the handoff from teammate Tara Belsito on the final turn. "It's one we just have to put behind us," Stutheit said. "At least it wasn't at districts ro state."

However, Stutheit made up for it at the long jump pit when she faced off with Timberline's LaShonda Christopher. Christopher captured the state title a year ago as a freshman while Stutheit was the state champion in the event a year earlier. The Richland senior posted an 18 foot jump early and waited for Christopher to top it. However, the Timberline jumper never could and Stutheit won with a jump of 18-41/2. Christopher was third with a jump of 17-4 1/2. "I'm not happy with the jump but I am with the place," Stutheit said. "I scratched on a couple of 19 foot jumps. I gambled on one of them and scratched by a quarter of an inch."

Richland was not the only Big Nine team to turn in solid performances at the Pasco Invitate. In fact, the top three teams-Richland, Walla Walla and Kamiakin-were all from the Big Nine. The Blue Devils were paced by Seville Broussard, who was named Outstanding Female Athlete of the Meet. Broussard finished first in the high jump(5-8), the 100 high hurdles(15.11) and the 300 low hurdles(45.68). "I'm very surprised," Broussard said. "I never thought of myself winning(the Outstanding Female Athlete). But it's pretty cool though."

The Kamiakin girls were paced by Fran Green, a sophomore, who finished second in the high jump, 100 and 200 and also anchored the 400 relay team that finished first. "I'm real happy," Green said. "I hope I can get better and place high at state. What can I expect, I'm just a sophomore. I did my best so I'm satisfied." Kamiakin coaches Kathy Morrey and Sean Suss were pleased with the team's performance. "This team has a lot of leadership and it's showing," Suss said. "They came to a big meet and did what they had to do. They showed a lot of character." The Braves 400 relay team won with a time of 50.04. "Both relays did a great job today," Suss said. "The 400 time was one of the best of the season. We've benn extremely pleased with that." Dana Riste, Ari Skorpik, and Jill Willis also ran legs on the victorious relay team. Kamiakin's Jaime Owens was fourth in the javelin to earn Kamiakin's only other medal.

The only record of the day came in the javelin where Nicole Trammell of West Valley(Yak) tied the record of 148-1 set by former Kamiakin standout Kim Phillips in 1985. The Kennewick girls had a fifth place finish by Shelley Massingale in the javelin(126-1) and the Pasco girls had a fifth place finish in the 400 relay. Grandview's Anitra Patton had a second place finish in the 100 hurdles and Prosser's Lisa Pike was fourth in the 400. Burbank's Shakila Wilson was fifth in the 300 hurdles andHermiston's Brandi Hagemann was fifth in the 3200. Besides Broussard, Walla Walla earned points from Leslee Oliver, who was third in the discus and seventh in the shot, and Jill Watkins, who was second in the triple jump and eighth in the long jump.




April 16, 1994

Kennewick's Leo Slack made voting on athlete of the meet easy for coaches at the 33rd annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium. In seemingly effortless fashion, Slack won three events to earn the meet's top honor while leading the Lions to a third-place finish. "I felt great today. I knew I was capable of winning all three," said Slack. "I just needed to stay relaxed and concentrate." Slack cleaned up in the field events as he set personal bests and state highs in the javelin, long jump and triple jump. Although he picked up a javelin for the first time only three weeks agao, Slack coasted to the victory. His throw of 199 feet beat second place finisher Ryan Eddington of Mead by nearly 15 feet.

"Leo is a blue-chip athlete," Kennewick coach Dave Rockstrom said. "He works very hard every day in practice and it paid off today. He's got an athlete's mentality. He expects to win whatever event he's competing in." In the long jump, the event he considers his strongest, Slack leaped 23-0 3/4 in his flight and then watched as no one could beat the mark in the finals. "I knew if I got a good jump early, there was a good chance I wouldn't even have to jump in the finals," he said. "I think the other guys were pushing too hard and lost their concentration."

Slack, who plans to attend Washington State University to run track and play football, was just as dominant in the triple jump. His mark of 47-2 3/4 outdistanced the field by almost two feet. "This meet is a great experience for me," Slack said. "It's an opportunity to measure yourself against the competition and see what you need to work on before the state meet." Rockstrom said Slack will be an outstanding decathlete in the future: "Leo is a natural athlete, he makes it look so easy." Slack said he thought competing in the Tri-Cities gave him a slight edge over his competition. "It's nice to compete in the Tri-Cities," he said. "I think being comfortable with the surroundings and having all the support from your family and friends was definitely an advantage.

After throwing the discus last week against the best in the nation, squaring off against the state's elite would seem to be an easy task for Richland's junior Kevin Moore. Moore broke his own school record with a throw of 185 feet, 2 inches last weekend at the Arcadia Invitational in Arcadia, Calif., and was the favorite at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet. Moore didn't disappoint Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium. He rallied to defeat Travis Coddington of Renton in a dramatic final. Moore's toss of 174-2 beat Coddington by one foot.

"It feels great to win here," said Moore, the grandson of Fran Rish, a former football and baseball coach at Richland. "There are a lot of great discus throwers in the state, and I'm glad I came out on top." Moore takes his sport seriously. He has a shotput ring in his backyard to practice his footwork and spends countless hours watching films of the sport's all-time greats. "I have to do whatever I can to get an edge," Moore said. "I'm not as big as most of these guys so I have to work a little harder if I want to win."

Richland coach Jim Qualheim said there's no secret behind Moore's success. "Kevin is a self-motivated athlete, and that's pretty rare today," Qualheim said. "He's very focused. He knows exactly what he wants to accomplish." That showed earlier this spring when Moore underwent arthroscopic surgery after injuring a knee while lifting weights. He was walking the next day and soon after returned to practice. Qualheim said he believes Moore has the ability to throw more than 200 feet before his prep career ends.

Pasco's Doug Dorton, the defending state champion in the 300 meter hurdles appears to be on his way to an encore performance. In one of the most exciting races of the day, Dorton came from behind to beat Nathan Williams of Hazen. Dorton finished in a time of 39.17. Williams came in at 39.47. "I'm glad I was able to put on a show for the home crowd," Dorton said. "I struggled early in the race, but got it going toward the end. I'm glad the Hazen runner was there to push me."

Dorton was behind most of the race but caught Williams near the 200 meter mark and exploded to the finish line. "Usually I have a strong start and hold on for the win, but today it was just the opposite," Dorton said. Dorton said ne had something to prove after failing to qualify for the finals in the 110 hurdles earlier in the day. "I don't get to race here very often, so I really wanted a win in this meet," he said. Dale Fuller, Pasco's track coach, said he thought Dorton ran a great race. "Doug did a good job of shaking off his loss in the highs," Fuller said. "He got off to a bad start but hung in there and finished strong."

Kamiakin's Kenn Currie, one of the favorites to win the high jump, and four others cleared 6-6 in the high jump but failed to make 6-8. Currie, who had done 7-0 in practice and 6-10 two weeks ago, battled a sore ankle he suffered in the long jump earlier in the day. But it was the asphalt that Currie and some of the other competitors had problems with. "It was tough to get a good approach," Currie said. "I'm disappointed with the results. I thought coming in I had a good chance to clear 6-10. But it's good to be out here competing with the state's best high jumpers. I'm sure we'll all improve before we get to the state meet. Currie also finished fifth in the long jump. Kamiakin's Kevin Whitson placed second in the shotput. Whitson's toss of 57-2 1/4 was a personal best. "I'm happy with my throw," Whitson said. "I still think I have a lot of room to improve. I hope to be throwing about 62-63 at state.

To nobody's surprise, the Mead Panthers ran away with the team title, 17 points ahead of second place Bothell. Mead's Greg James won the 800 meters; Rob Autrey captured the 1600; and Micah Davis coasted to victory in the 3200. The Panthers also won the medley relay. Besides Slack, Chelan's Nathan Boyd was the only other multiple winner. Boyd won the 110 hurdles and later sailed 15 feet to win the pole vault.


The Walla Walla girls followed the strong feet of Seville Broussard to the girls team victory Saturday at the 33rd Annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. The Blue Devils racked up 50 points--30 of those came from the solo efforts of Broussard--to finish ahead of Mead(46 points), Richland(45) and Kamiakin(43). There were a total of 1,340 boys and girls from three states in the meet.

Not only did Broussard set the meet record by nearly a second, she became just the third female athlete in Washington prep history to break the 43-second barrier in the 300 hurdles as she cruised to victory with a mark of 42.82. Joyce Schweim of Puyallup set the all-time mark in 1986 with a 42.55 and Kennewick's Pam Board approached that with a 42.73 in 1983. Broussard started on the inside lane and looked to be close to the field around the turns. Unfortunately for the competition, the Walla Walla athlete flew down the straight away in dusting the rest of the field by more than three seconds. "At the beginning I was really tired. I didn't know if I could do it," Broussard said. "But I just had to stay with them and be patient while I made up the stagger." Broussard also broke the meet record in the 100 high hurdles with a time of 14.34 and although she said she wanted to high jump 5-10, she claimed first place in that event with a mark of 5-8.

The Richland girls team useda strong rally in the relays to claim third place in the team standings. The Bombers won the 400 and 1600 relays and took second in the 800 relays. "I'm real pleased," said Richland Coach Jim Qualheim. "We've got some good senior leaders and kids with experience in relays." Qualheim brought a Richland team that finished second at state last year but was minus state long jump champion Celeste Stutheit, who now attends Washington State University as Celeste Strokes. "When you lose an athlete like Celeste, people think you're a has been," Qualheim said. It wasn't so, in part thanks to senior Sara Moore, who ran in the 400 relay for the first time Saturday. Moore also chipped in with a second place finish and a personal best(58.48) in the 200.

"I was really excited, not nervous at all," Moore said of her first crack at the 4x100. "Our goal is always for everyone to do the best they can. That definitely happened today." Moore appears bound for Stanford next year, while teammate Alyssa Fishback--who ran on the victorious 1600 relay team--will attend Pacific Lutheran. Also on the first place 1600 relay team were Kaci Young, Lisa Dean and Moore. The Bombers' winning 400 relay team had Alisa Miller, Tricia Dean and Lisa Dean paired with Moore.

Kamiakin's Fran Green won the 100 (12.32) and 200 (25.68) as the Braves claimed fourth place. Green's victories came after a disappointing third-place finish in the high jump. "I knew I could make up what I lost in the 100," Green said. "I ran 12.3 in the prelims and coach told me that nobody was close." But that didn't cause Green to lose focus. "I just tried to concentrate on my body-how it felt-and my attitude," she said. Kamiakin's Girls Coach Cheryl Schauble was happy with the effort of Green, who overcame an unfavorable schedule to help the Braves to a fourth place finish. Green anchored Kamiakin's 400 relay team to close second-place finish behind Richland. "We're still finding those missing links in the 4x100," Schauble said. "It's not a bad time. We've just got to get the connections."

Hanford's Shay Nielson was a runnerup twice(in the 300 hurdles and long jump) and took third in the 100. Nielson led the field in the long jump with a mark of 17-3, only to see Newport's Farrah Fabien fly 17-11 to claim first. "I couldn't get my runway on. I was finishing this far behind the board," said Nielson, holding her index finger and thumb a few inches apart. "I just wanted 18 (feet)."



April 15, 1995

Neatly hidden within the middle heats of a race in the middle of Saturday afternoon was one of the most significant results of the 34th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet. Hermiston's Venus Nguyen and Mead's Megan Troy finished the girls 400 meter dash with indentical 60.4 second times in separate heats. Mead earned half a team point for the tie, and that was just the half-point margin the Richland Bombers needed to edge the Panthers of the Greater Spokane League for the combined boys-girls title at Edgar Brown Stadium. Richland scored 98 points to 97.5 for Mead in the closest finish to date. Just moments before, Richland Coach Jim Qualheim expressed his happiness at what he thought was just the boys team title, which the Bombers walked away with by 20 points over Kent-Meridian. "It's the second time in this modern era that we've won the boys title," Qualheim said, referring to Richland's 1984 Pasco Invite boys title-winning team. "I didn't think we would have a shot at the combined title." A wide-eyed Qualheim later recanted. "That's a surprise, a real nice surprise," he said.

When it came down to the individual honors, though, there were few big surprises. Kamiakin's Fran Green, who placed first in the 100 meter dash and the long jump and third in the high jump and 4x100 relay, was named the meet's most outstanding girl athlete. Lynnwood's Ben Lindsey, who easily took the shotput and discus championships, was bestowed the boys top individual honor. Walla Walla's Katie Kress had the only meet record, shattering the girls triple jump mark with a 39-3 effort. The old record was held by Cynthia Johnson of Rainier Beach in 1987 at 38-10 3/4. Mead took the girls team title with 54.5 points, outdistancing University with 46. Kamiakin was third, a point back with 45. "Oh, it's wonderful," said the Braves' girls coach Cheryl Schauble. "I'm excited about that. Anything in the top three at Pasco is definitely an honor.


You've got to hand it to the Richland boys track team. There were no first-place finishes, but when the trophy for top team honors at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet was presented, everyone wanted to get his hands on it. After all, just about every Bomber had a hand in winning it. Richland senior Kevin Moore was second in the shotput and third in the discus. Fellow senior John Hedengren was third in the 1600 and second in the 3200. Even on a day when Moore said he didn't feel very good about his throws and Hedengren admitted he didn't race as well as he could have, Richland still ran away from the field outdistancing runnerup Kent-Meridian 69-49.

"These guys have put in a lot of work and this is the payoff, especially for our seniors," said Richland Coach Jim Qualheim, now in his 16th year. "If you do well here, you can stay with anyone at state. We just kind of chipped away, even though we didn't get a first place. That shows us that we have room for improvement." Qualheim said this year's team reminds him of his 1984 edition, which he considers his best. He's excited that there's still a lot of time to get even better.

Moore threw the shotput 54 feet, 7.75 inches and hurled the discus 172-4. Both marks were well behind the winner of both events, Ben Lindsey of Lynnwood. Lynnwood superthrower, Ben Lindsey, who was named the most outstanding boys athlete at the Pasco Invitate, drew oohs and aahs from the crowd watching the discus warm-ups. Lindsey, who had already thrown the eventual-day's best of 185-5 in the final heat, hurled the discus so far it hit the chain-linked fence, marking the 200 foot boundary on the fly. Lindsey's discus punched the fence and scooted back a garbage can that was righ behind. "I knew I hit the fence, but I didn't know I hit the garbage can," Lindsey said. Moore put pressure on himself by misthrowing on his first two attempts in the final heat. He finally threw 167 feet to qualify for the championship round. "I was just out of rhythm," Moore said. "Normally it helps to have his much good competition throwing around me, but I never got into a good rhythm." Moore said that there was a delay that interrupted his warmups and said that might have been a factor in his timing.

Hedengren, a high-placing cross country runner, faced two of his biggest rivals in the 1600-Micah Davis of Mead and Zack Ventress of Ferris. Hedegren finished in 4:20.56 behind both by just a few seconds. "I was going too slow and I needed to push," Hedengren said. "We tried to make (the pack) hang with us. We went out pretty fast." The Richland senior used his normal tactic, hanging in the middle of the pack for the first part of the race before kicking hard to the front. That plan hurt Hedengren somewhat in the 3200 meters ass he fell too far behind Mead's Skiy DeTray to catch up. Hedengren who said he expended a good deal of his energy in the 1600, completed the 3200 in 9:31.78, more than 14 seconds behind DeTray. "I was not going for time," DeTray said. "I just wanted to go out for a race and win. At first I wanted to stay with the guys up front, but later I wanted to see if they could stay with me."

After Richland, the next highest area finisher was Kennewick with 19 points. The Lions were led by David Potter's third-place finish in the 800 meters. Also the helping the Bombers to the team title was third place in the 400 meter relay and second in the 1600 relay. The 4x400 is traditionally the last event of any track meet. However, because the high jump ran late, it was the meet's final event, going a good 30 minutes after the 1600 relay ended. Matt Weber of Kentwood won the high jump with a school-record jump of 6-7. Joe Gintner of Kamiakin was third with a best of 6-5. Richland's Dan Johnston was fourth in the 110 high hurdles, the first event of the afternoon finals and second in the 300 hurdles.

JaWarren Hooker of Ellensburg was first in the 100 meters finishing in 10.71 seconds. Hooker, a sophomore, was also part of the Bulldogs' fifth place 4x100 relay team. "I had a pretty good start, and I felt pretty good," said Hooker. "My goal was just to make the finals since I didn't make it as a freshman." In the only dead heat of the day, Terry Tharps of Curtis and teammate Mychal Trawick needed a photo to determine the 200 meter winner, which turned out to be Tharps by a hundredth of a second, 22.12-22.13. "If I lose to anybody. I want it to be my teammate," Tharps said before he learned of the result. "We're boys to the end." Said Trawick: "It's our toughest race so far. It should make our 4x100 team better." That team had originally been given the title, but it was later disqualified because of an illegal handoff.


Fran Green paid the price for being too versatile on Saturday. The Kamiakin senior, who is headed off to Washington State University next fall, tried to juggle four events at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Edgar Brown Stadium and it ended up costing her a first-place finish. Green won the most outstanding girls athlete award after taking first in the 100 meter dash and long jump, and anchoring the Kamiakin 4x100 relay team that took third. But according to Green, a victory in the high jump was definitely within reach.

She finished third in the event after missing a chance to clear 5-6. She had cleared 5-5, checked out, and headed over to anchor the 4x100 relay. When she got back, the bar had been moved up to 5-7, and it was ruled that she missed her chance. "They say I took too long getting back," Green argued. Meet officials enforced the rule that she was gone more than the allotted time and had gone ahead without her. Connell's Leslie Price won the event with a jump of 5-7.

Green's day started out on a high note, but quickly turned hectic as her other three events overlapped. "The hardest thing for sure is the transition," Green said after streaking to victory in the 100-meter dash, her first event, around 2 p.m. Green gathered up her sweat suit and began jogging over to the high jump area where she was slated to perform her first jumps. "You don't have a chance to rest," she said as she ran. "But the variety is what makes it fun." After a few high jumps, it was off to the long jump pit at about 2:15 p.m., where she leaped 18-6.5 in her second attempt. Green tried to better that distance twice in the finals, but when University's Adrienne Wilson's final jump only went 17-7.75, Green checked Wilson's mark, gathered up her things and headed back over to the high jump area. "I'm so glad I didn't have to (long) jump again," Green said as she jogged away. "I get to save my legs. I still have to high jump some more and I've got the 4x100 coming up."

In fact, the Kamiakin relay team had a shot at beating University, which finished first in the 400 relay, and Richland, which was second, but a bad handoff between Dana Riste and Chrissy Gordon cost the Braves a few seconds. "I got going and she (Riste) ran up on me too fast," Gordon said. "I think I spiked her, and I almost landed in another lane." Riste described the whole thing as "yucky". "Yes, she did kick me," Riste said. It slowed us up a lot, and I think it didn't give Fran a chance to beat that University girl." Riste had a better day earlier when she won the 100 high hurdles in 15.21.

Hanford's Shay Nielson, who also competed in four events, trailed by only four-tenths of a second in the highs and finished third. "I had a lot of butterflies," said Nielson, who gave Riste a high-five after the race. "That fifth hurdle gave me a little bit of a problem, and then I hit the sixth." Nielson who is in her first season of running the 100 hurdles, is the defending state champion in the 300 low hurdles. But on Saturday Autumn Wood of Mead beat Nielson in the 300 hurdles by almost two seconds. Wood finished in 44.84 to Nielson's 46.87. "I remember her beating me sometime last year," Nielson said. "And I'm worn out."

In the javelin, Kennewick's Shelly Massingale finished third at 130-8 despite a sore back. "I woke up this morning and it hurt right between the shoulder blades," Massingale said. "Three people tried popping my back, but they popped everything else by my back. Allison Beatty of Mead waited until her last throw in the finals to take the lead for good. Molly Monroe of Ellensburg had a toss of 138-1 in the first round that stood up until Beatty launched a 139 foot throw.

And as it turned out, only one meet record was broken on Saturday-a 39-3 triple jump by Katie Kress of Walla Walla. That broke Cynthia Johnson's record that has stood since 1987 as well as the Walla Walla school record. "I've been shooting for 39 all year," Kress, a junior, said. "I wanted that school record even more than the meet record." And what about the state record of 41-7.5? "I think it's reachable," Kress said. "If I don't hit the 40s this year, there's always next year."



April 13, 1996

Mead took home both first-place trophies from Saturday's 35th Pasco Invitational Track Meet but Pasco's boys kept a trophy at home for the first time in a decade with a second-place finish. "Jeff (Baker) and I have dreamed about this since we were freshman," said senior Eric Thronson, who finished fifth for the third straight year in the 1600 meter run (4:21.86). "We worked all year to win the Pasco Invite. Placing is great, don't get me wrong, but winning would have been nice. It was all I was thinking about. Baker, who placed sixth in the triple jump (44-3 1/4), also wasn't too disappointed with winning the team's first hardware since 1985. "That's a pretty big trophy, too," said Baker, looking toward the awards stand. "Out of 80 some-odd teams, to get second, that's good. That's real good.

Just as good was the performance of Ellensburg's JaWarren Hooker, who captured Most Outstanding Male Athlete honors by defending his 100 title in 10.68, then breezing to the 200 crown by three-quarters of a second. "this is the perfect way to end a good day," Hooker said. "I'd never run four races in one day, and with the weather conditions a little hot, it was hard to do that. But I was able to run my race and not worry about anything else."

The Pasco girls team also had one of its strongest showings in years finishing tied for eighth despite being without star hurdler Nanette Allen. The highlight of their meet was a come-from-behind victory in the 800 relay, with Mandy Fitzpatrick reeling in five runners on the third leg and Cristi Horning holding on at the tape. "I just had a feeling we would be up there," said Horning, who also took home medals in the 100, long jump and 400 relay.

The Most Outstanding Female Athlete award went to Central Kitsap's Chelsie Pentz, who held off Shawna Pankow of Rochester to win the 200 and 400 titles. "Winning (the award) was kind of a surprise," Pentz said. "I didn't even know they had this award." Another outstanding performance was turned in by Goldendale's junior Jill Pimley, who single-handedly won her school a fourth-place team trophy. Pimley scored all 26 points by taking second in the javelin and long jump, third in the 300 low hurdles and fifth in the triple jump.


Pasco distance runner Eric Thronson stood in a circle alongside a half-dozen teammates, each taking a turn holding the trophy. "This is the best thing next to a state title there is," said Thronson after the Bulldog boys finished second behind Mead at Saturday's Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. "No, it's maybe even better. Man, I'm not even going to sleep tonight, I'm so excited. This is the best feeling."

It was truly a team effort that garnered Pasco it first boys trophy at its own meet since 1985. Only Trent Ady won an individual crown, coming back from a slow start to capture the 110 meter hurdles in 15.00, but six different individuals picked up points and Pasco placed in both the 400 and 1600 relays. "we've had some good teams since 1985, but none that got it done here until today," said Bulldogs coach Dale Fuller, whose team totaled 45 points to finish behind only Mead with 70. "The thing about this team is that it's a lot more balanced. Every little point is important at a meet like this."

And Pasco picked up eight important points from a pair of unlikely sources in the middle distance races. Lincoln Ward got fifth in the 400 and Alex Frank took fifth in the 800, providing the margin over third-place Chelan (38). "I knew we needed the points and that put a little pressure on me, but I just went out and ran my hardest," said Frank, who ran a 1:58.30.

The Bulldogs' biggest scorer was Ady, who also finished a strong third in the 300 hurdles. The senior was using a new type of starting blocks that are supposed to provide faster starts. Instead, they provided the opposite effect for the 110 high hurdles final, but by the midway point, Ady had caught the leaders and slowly pulled away from there to victory. "They're supposed to get you standing up quicker, but I'm still shaky on them," said Ady of the blocks. "I just stayed in the blocks because I didn't want to scratch, figuring I'd try to catch them in the hurdles. "I saw the rest of the guys about the sixth hurdle, and I got a little bit of a rhythm going at the finish." Pasco also received points from Renard Edwards in the 200 (sixth, 22.87) as well as aa third in the 400 relay and a fourth in the 1,600 relay.

Several area athletes surprised in the field events to take home individual honors. Kamiakin's A.J. Giesa jumped 21-5 3/4 to take third in the long jump. "I had no idea I'd come in and do that," Giesa said. "That's a (personal record) for me by a foot." Richland, the defending champion, had a pair of throwers providing the bulk of its 10 points. Junior Rolla Joyce placed fifth in the javelin with a 182-0 throw, and freshman Ryan Moore took seventh in the discus at 152-8-a 13 foot personal best. Moore credited his older brother, Kevin, a freshman at Washington State University who won the Class AAA state discus title last season, with helping him come along quickly in his prep career.

Mead Panthers won the meet by placing in 13 of the 17 events. They were lead by the distance running of Jason Fayant in the 3200 (9:14.52) and a supporting cast to win the distance relay (10:34.84) which was a new event for the Invite. They also had a second place in the 4x100 relay (42.82) and a second-place by Beau Chandler in the javelin (192-0). But it was the tremendous depth in all the events that spelled doom for the rest of the field at the Pasco Invitational Track Meet.


Mother Nature did her part for the athletes Saturday at the 35th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet by providing sun and temperatures in the 60s and keeping the wind to a minimum. And although no meet records were broken, the female athletes from 61 schools around Washington did their part by providing the packed crowd with plenty of excitement and down-to-the-wire finishes. Even Central Kitsap's Chelsie Pentz, who was given the most outstanding female athlete award, liked the competition she got as she won the 200 and 400. As a sophomore last year, Pentz won the 400 at state and took second in the 200. "This is the first time in a few years that someone has even pushed me in the 400," she said, referring to her four-hundreths of a second margin of victory over Shawna Pankow of Rochester.

Pasco's winning 4x200 relay team of Tara Henry, Megan Maxwell, Mandy Fitzpatrick and Cristi Horning also can vouch for the stiff competition. The team had the fastest time going into the meet. But the Bulldog sprinters were near the back of the pack after the first two legs when Fitzpatrick took the baton and proceeded to chase down every runner except Kennewick's Heather Kile. She pulled even with Kile right before the hand-off. "I ran the open 200 and didn't do very well, so I wanted to make up for that in the relay," Fitzpatrick explained. Horning and the Lion's Heidi Abersfeller ran neck and neck until Horning lunged so far at the finish line she fell. But not before recording a 1:47.25 time to Kennewick's 1:47.50. Wenatchee, in a previous heat, and Kennewick tied for second place. Horning took fourth in the long jump, fifth in the 100 and anchored the 4x100 relay, while Abersfeller took sixth in the 200 and was part of the 4x400 relay team that took fourth.

Lucieta Zapata was just happy to be competing at the Invite. The sprinter from Walla Walla was sick with the flu all week and had to miss a Big Nine meet. "I felt really weak," she said. Unfortunately for the rest of the field in the 100, Zapata wasn't feeling too weak Saturday. She won first place. Walla Walla's Katie Kress didn't feel so good about her fifth place in the long jump and second place in the triple jump. Last year, Kress set the Invite record with a leap of 39-3. And this year she had the best jump going into the finals with a 35-11.5 effort. But Tami Standish, a sophomore from Ellensburg, waited until her last jump in the final flight to earn first place with a personal best of 36 feet even.

While one athlete didn't do as well as she hoped, another exceeded her expectations. Hanford's Kathryn Kesler took second in the high jump with a 5-3 performance but favored Fran Richardson of Mountlake Terrace, who has gone 5-9, prevailed at 5 feet, 4 inches. "I was kind of scared at first (with all the competition)," Kesler said, "but I just planted hard and got the corner. I didn't even know I got second because when I left, there were still a few girls left."

Richland's Cynthia Atencio knows a little bit about leaving a few girls behind as she set a personal best in the 1,600 with a time of 5:03.6 for first-place honors. Mead Panthers won the team honors with 51.5 points over cross town rivals, Ferris of Spokane (30). As a team, they placed in half of the events and were led by Autumn Wood who won the 300 low hurdles (45.41) and placed third in the 100 high hurdles (16.07). The Panthers also won the 4x100 relay with a time of 50.73.



April 19, 1997

Heidi Abersfeller's leg held her up for 400 meters, and not one step farther. But that was long enough for Abersfeller to wrap up a 1,600 meter relay title for Kennewick and give her Lions the girls team championship at Saturday's 36th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. Kennewick's state-best time of 4 minutes, 1.49 seconds--run by Andie Hansen, Melissa Mackay, Erin Park and Abersfeller--gave the Lions the 10 points necessary to overtake Pasco in the standings and win their first Invite title since 1983. Kennewick finished with 53 points and Pasco had 51.

"We knew about that from the beginning. That's what drove us," said Abersfeller as her relay mates kept her from collapsing. "It was a pretty busy day for me, but I kept warm and had a lot more energy. But I pushed that so hard. The last 50 killed me; my legs were going out." The key was Mackay's second leg. When she receivedd the baton, she held a slight margin. By the time her 400 meters were over, she handed a 3-meter cushion to Park. "Once we got the lead in the second leg, I knew we could hold it," Mackay said.

Cascade of Leavenworth senior Megan Franza was named Outstanding Female Athlete after picking up three first-place plaques winning both hurdles (100 highs, 15.36 and 300 hurdles, 45.17) and the high jump (5-9).

The Lions would not have been in position to win the meet if not for some points coming from unexpected sources. Dani Maus took second in the high jump, Park placed third in the 800 and Kim Moorer took fifth in the triple jump to go along with Abersfeller's second place in the 200 and Kennewick scoring in all four relay events. "Those are the points that made the difference today," Lions coach Ted Homme said. "And Heidi let the track do the talking today. She got on the platform four times, and that was big. This is such a big track meet, I couldn't have imagined us winning it."

For most of the afternoon, it appeared Pasco would run away with its first Invite team title. Led by freshman sprinter, Bree Skinner, the Bulldogs won the 400 and 800 relays. Skinner also won the 200 and took second in the 100 to defending Class A state champion LaShaunda Fowler of Foster. "I came in here nervous today," Skinner said. "Coming into the Invite, the competition had me a little scared. But as the meet went on, I got more confidence in myself." Those are encourageing words to Bulldog's coach Paul Antonovich. "I'm very happy to do as well as we did today," he said. "Our relays have legitimate chances at state titles. The times we ran are times we didn't run until regionals last year."

Third in the team race was Cascade of Leavenworth with 43 points, followed by 1996 champion Mead with 35.5 points. Cascade was paced by Franza, who also took second in the long jump to total 38 points on her own. "This was something I knew if I did the best I could, that I should do it," said Franza, who swept the hurdles events and cleared a state-best 5 feet-9 in the high jump. "The one that means the most to me is the 300 (hurdles). It comes down so much to gut, to battling it out at the end. It's the (victory) I enjoy the most because I like (the event) the least."

Two other Mid-Columbia athletes took home individual titles. Hermiston junior Venus Nguyen destroyed the meet record in the 400, winning by 2 1/2 seconds in 55.2. She and Fowler were neck-and-neck at the halfway points, but Nguyen turned on the jets around the last turn and pulled away. "I wanted to show them what an Oregon runner could do, I guess," Nguyen said, smiling. "When we were close together, I'm thinking, 'Gotta go. Gotta go.' Then when I couldn't near (Fowler) behind me, I just kept it going."

Richland sophomore Cynthia Atencio defended her 3,200 title in style, winning by a 24.5 second margin in 10:53.82. She and LaGrande's Mariel Ettinger broke away from the pack early in the race, but by lap four, Atencio was by herself, gradually increasing the lead to 90 meters. "I was hoping for a closer race because it's hard to pace myself when I'm alone. But I knew if I started out too fast, I can burn them off at the end," Atencio said. "I felt a lot stronger. I trained in the winter rather than play basketball because I knew that's what my opponents were doing. I had to give up something to get better in track."


Ellensburg's Ja'Warren Hooker wiggled his feet into the blocks, knelt on one knee and bowed his head. The few seconds he was allowed before the starting gun's trigger was pulled, he gathered his thoughts and said a short prayer. There was little doubt for the thousands of fans who turned out for the 36th annual Pasco Invite on Saturday what was about to transpire. The question was: How fast? Competing in the 100 and 200 meter dashes, Hooker not only blew away both fields fo runners while breaking state and meet records and earning the Invite's Outstanding Male Athlete award, he left the grandstands gasping for air.

Hooker electrified the Edgar Brown track with a 10.44 second run in the 100, breaking his all-time state record of 10.53 set two weeks ago in Yakima. Then a few short hours later, Hooker lined up in the 200 and raced to a meet record of 21.40, two-tenths of a second off his state-record run set last weekend at the Arcadia, Calif., Invitational. Atferward, Hooker humbly accepted all the congratulations his coaches, teammates and new-found friencs and admirers could pass along. "I didn't particularly set goals for the times," he said. "I decided if I came in and ran well, it's good enough for me. I came here to run, and that's what people want to see."

Cascade of Leavenworth's Megan Franza, who won the Invite's top female award by winning three events, and Goldendale's Jill Pimley were among those who congratulated Hooker. But even after all the praise and acknowledgement, Hooker criticized his performance. "I was kind of sluggish coming out of the blocks. I need to be more aggressive," he said after the 200. "I just didn't feel loose. I wasn't where I wanted to be."

Kennewick's Jon Holland liked where Hooker was--not in the 400-meter dash. Hooker's performance overshadowed how the area athletes fared Saturday. Holland took advantage of Hooker's absence and blazed to victory in 49.57 seconds, a time Holland said was "down there" leaning across the finish, gave a glance at the "49.5" on the Edgar Brown scoreboard and ran another 20 yards while pumping his fist. "The last 100 (meters), I was really hurting," Holland said, "but it was a big meet and I felt the adrenaline. There's some good competition here. It's not slow at all.

Pasco's Alex Frank broke a 32-year old school mark with his 1:55.56 time in the 800, which landed him second overall behind Shawn Murphy of Woodinville (1:54.96). Frank said Saturday's race was the first open 800 he had competed in all season and to run well gives him confidence for the rest of the season. "I definitely was a little worried coming in," said Frank, who also ran second on the Pasco's 1,600 relay team that finished third. The last 200 I really picked it up and passed some guys, so I feel pretty good."

Kennewick's Chris Littrell also lowered his personal-record time in the 300 intermediate hurdles with a run of 39.55, which was second-best behind Dominique Demouchet of Central Kitsap (38.65). "I have been really frustrated with my times lately," Littrell said. "I figured I'd come out today, it's my senior year, and just work hard.

The Kamiakin 1,600 relay team, competed with twin brothers Scott and Steve Petersen, finished second in 3:26.9, just six-hundreths of a second faster than Pasco. Pasco also had a set of twins competing in Kevin and Kelly McFadden, along with Frank and Lincoln Ward. Other notable performances included Kamiakin's A.J. Giesa, who finished second in the long jump with a leap of 22 fett, 2 inches; Hanford's Kurt Kraemer, who was third in the high jump at 6-5; and Connell's Neil Warr, who finished third in the javelin with a throw of 187-0.

Mead won its second consecutive team title with 55 points. The distance running corp, which won the distance relay in a time of 10:45.66, and the high jumper Casey Clark, who jumped 6-8 to win the high jump, led the Panthers. The Panthers again showed depth by placing in 8 of the events for the day and also taking seconds in 1600(Morgan Thompson,4:16.6), the pole vault (Shawn Gumke, 14-6) and the shotput(Scott McGlocklin, 54-3). Curtis was second with 32 points, Kennewick was tied for third with Ellensburg at 28 points, marking the first time in school history both the Lions boys and girls teams won Invite trophies in the same year.




April 18, 1998

After 37 years of holding the Pasco Invitational Track Meet, the biggest team trophy in the girls competition stays home. The Bulldogs, behind their scorching sprint corps, piled up 50.5 points to win their first title in school history. Kamiakin was second with 42 points--nosing out Lake Washington by a point--the Braves' best showing since the 1987 title. Kennewick, the team that edged Pasco for the team crown last season, took home the fourth-place trophy with 38 points. In the boys meet, Hanford won its first-ever team trophy taking fourth with 38 points as distance runner Adam Tenforde was named the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete. The Mead Panthers won the boys title for the third straight year with 49 points. The Pasco boys finished fifth, giving the Bulldogs the combined team championship.

"This is awesome," Pasco's sophomore sprinter Bree Skinner said. "I'm just glad to be part of it. It's thrilling, that's all I can say. For it's girls title, Pasco can thank its sprinters--led fy Skinner--but it certainly was not a one-person show. The 4x100 relay set a meet record in winning in 48.49 seconds and the Bulldogs lowered their state-best time in winning the 4x200 to 1:43.2. Skinner lost in close finishes to Steilacoom's Alexis Yeater--the meet's Outstanding Female Athlete--in the 100 and 200 meters, but she anchored the Bulldog's victorious 4x100 and 4x200 teams. Add in Natalie Kinion's second place in the shotput and Megan Maxwell's surprising sixth in the high jump, and it added up to victory.

In the 100, Yeater outleaned Skinner at the finish line after trailing her for 99 1/2 meters. Then in the 200, Skinner--who set a meet record in the preliminaries (24.75)--just didn't have enough left in the tank to catch Yeater down the backstretch. "I think all the races I ran today got to me," Skinner said. "I'm happy with what I've done today. But I'll learn how to shut it down in preliminaries. And I'll learn to lean a little more."

Kinion finally came through at the Invite aftera disappointing showing last year, popping a career-best 40 foot, 10 1/4 inch throw on her second attempt in the shotput finals. Snohomish's Mary Etter countered with a 41-10 1/4, but Kinion was pleased with second. "It was my goal to break 40 again, because I hadn't since last year," Kinion said. "I was a little disappointed after the discus(she missed the finals by 1 foot), but it didn't affect my shot. It did pump me up, though.

Kamiakin's coach Cheryl Schauble was surprised to hear her team finished so high in the standing, but like Pasco, it was a team effort. Only Lindsey Johnson scored in two individual events--winning the high hurdles and taking fourth in the lows. Freshman Renee Wageman outkicked Kennewick's Erin Park to win the 800 in 2:18.87, and Erin Anglesey threw 129-1 to take third in the javelin, besting her previous personal-best by 12 feet. "The kids are working hard, and it's paying off," Schauble said. "This meet brings out the best in the kids." Johnson said she let instinct take over in winning the high hurdles. "I just said to myself, 'I've got to go faster,' and I hope to remember everything else," she said. "I was so nervous, but I was looking forward to this meet because I wanted better competition. Unlike Johnson, a sophomore, Wageman didn't know to get nervous for the first major competition of her high school career. "I'm just a freshman, and I figured I have my whole high school career to improve," she said. "I was just trying to stay with (Park), and at the end I kicked and was able to get around her."

Kennewick bounced back from a slow start to race past Mt. View and Auburn in the team standings. Park took home three second-place plaques--she ran in the distance relay and 4x400 relay. "I wasn't really strong mentally on Thursday," said Park, who improved her 800 time by more than 13 seconds from her dual meet race at Kamiakin. "The last three days, I've worked on getting confidence in myself. I just had to find it within myself, push it; because I knew I had it. I think I did that today."


The sun-kissed Saturday in April that has become synonymous with the Pasco Invitational Track Meet was relegated to only sun breaks for the 37th edition this year, but that didn't stop all the stars from coming out. Among the more than 1,400 athletes from 107 different schools who congregated at Edgar Brown Stadium, it didn't take long to identify the champions. Anyone who watched the effortless and efficienct stride of Hanford junior Adam Tenforde would find it hard to argue after he was selected the Outstanding Male Athlete of the meet. Tenforde won the 1,600 meters in a personal best of 4:16.1 and then came back to finish second in the 3,200 just a few hours later. Tenforde very nearly pulled off a difficult double win but ran out of real estate as he made a late move to catch a tiring Jim Rucker of Gonzaga Prep in the 3,200. Rucker finished in 9:14.7, with a hard-charging Tenforde at 9:15.7

Tenforde almost ended up in a tie with hurdler, Tyrone Asterino of Ferris and Joe Zelinski of Mead for outstanding male athlete. Asterino won the high hurdles (14.71) and placed second in the 300 hurdles (39.22). Zelinski won the 200-meter dash (22.08) and placed second in the 100 (10.90). So after a day of such close competition, it only was fitting that a vote of the coaches was close. "Wow," Tenforde said as he looked around at all the great athletes. "I'm shocked because there are such good people who come to this meet. I mean you get sprinters like Ja'Warren Hooker (who won the same award last year) and you always get the best in the state and some of the best from outside the state."

For being selected the top male athlete in the meet, Tenforde won a Pasco Invite plaque complete with a clock. "I'm always fighting the clock, so that's fitting," Tenforde said. Alexis Yeater of Steilacoom needed far less time to pickup her clock as the Outstanding Female Athlete. She made a remarkable lean at the finish line to edge Bree Skinner of Pasco in the girls 100-meter dash and then edged Skinner again in the 200. "Bree's such a great athlete, she really pushed me all day," Yeater said. "It was a really good test of my ability." It took a photo to determine the winner. Both were given times of 12.23. In the 200, it was nearly as close, with Yeater crossing the line at 24.93 and Skinner at 25.00.

Kurt Kraemer didn't take home a Pasco Invite clock, but he did show himself to be a champion. The Hanford senior reinjured his back during the long jump early in the day but still managed to win the triple jump, finish third in the long jump and fifth in the high jump. Hanford's boys coach Clay Lewis figured 35-40 points was a pretty good estimate of what his team could score at Saturday's Pasco Invite. The Falcon's final tally was 38--good enough to snare them the fourth-place trophy, the first time Hanford took home a piece of team hardware in the school's history. Hanford won the trophy riding Kurt Kraemer's ailing back and Adam Tenforde's rubbery legs. Kraemer won the triple jump with a best of 47 feet, 6 inches. "I was going to bag either the high jump or triple, maybe both," Kraemer said. "But I'm not going to give up just for being a little sore. And it worked out, because it didn't hinder me too much."

A pair of Tri-City athletes took home second-place plaques Saturday. Kamiakin's Travis King ran 49.68 to finish second in the 400, while Richland's Ryan Moore took second in the discus with a best of 157-8. Teammate Jason Hughes improved from eighth to third in the finals, throwing 153-6.

Mead's first place trophy was their third in a row. Sprinter Zelinski and long jumper, Chris McCullough, who jumped 22-6.5 to win that event, led Mead. Mead had 49 points to edge Davis (46) and University (44) in the team scoring. Davis' 4x400-relay team set a new meet record of 3:19.44. Tahvio Gratton of Davis won the 400 (49.06) and anchored both the 4x400-relay team and also the 4x100-relay team, which placed second. The Gonzaga boys distance relay team set a new meet record of 10:31.9. The Eisenhower girls distance relay team also set a new meet record of 12:35.2. That brought the total to five new meet records. Not bad for a meet that is 37 years old. Who needs sun with stars like that?



Rainier Beach, Pasco finish behind Braves in girls race

April 17, 1999

As the sun dipped below the wall at Edgar Brown Stadium on Saturday, several members of the Kamiakin girls track team sat at the finish line, patiently waiting for the final team results of the 38th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet. It took awhile for the computer to spit out the numbers, but for the Braves, it was well worth the wait. Kamiakin stormed to its first team title since 1985 with 62 points, 14 better than runner-up Rainier Beach. The host Bulldogs, champions in 1998, finished third, led by senior Natalie Kinion's state leading 46-foot, 2 1/2 inch shotput.

"This is such a big meet, with such good athletes. It's such an honor to win it," said Braves senior Emily Autrey, who won the 100, took second in the 200 and anchored the second place 4x100 team. But Autrey wasn't the only reason Kamiakin won the title. In all, five Braves scored points in individual events--including sophomore Renee Wageman defending her 800 title--and they scored in the 4x100 and 4x200 relays.

"The whole day, we had kids stepping up," said Braves coach Cheryl Schauble. "Everyone was excited to do their part." Autrey's victory came early in the meet. She caught the 100 field at the midway point and scored a decisive victory in 12.12 seconds. "I got stronger about halfway through the race," Autrey said. "I'm usually not up with (the leaders) at the start, but about halfway, I just accelerate more."

Wageman displayed a different strategy in winning the 800 this year. Unlike last year when she made her move in the final 200 meters, Wageman set the pace from the start and cruised to a 2.5 second win in 2:15.36. "Instead of being the underdog like last year, there's a lot more pressure on me to do my best and win," Wageman said. "I wanted to go out strong. I tend to hold back and kick at the end, but today I was trying to go out faster the first lap."

Lindsey Johnson tacked on a second in the high hurdles behind Outstanding Female Athlete Ginny Powell, a Rainier Beach freshman who won in a meet record 14.14. Johnson was also sixth in the low hurdles also won by Ginny Powell (45.25). Powell was also a member of both of the relays(4x100 and 4x200) that placed first. Pasco gave a strong showing in defense of its first-ever title, but the Bulldogs didn't sweep the sprint relays as they did in '98--Rainier Beach snapped a three-year Pasco streak in the 4x200--offsetting Kinion's record day in the throws.

Kinion started by taking second in the discus, rallying on her final throw to post a personal-best 134-8 to pass six competitors. After a short break. Kinion moved on to the javelin, where she took sixth in 127-8. Racing to the shotput area after completing her final javelin throw, Kinion had little time to get ready for her final event. No matter--she popped a 44-2.75 on her first attempt, besting her previous career-best by 1 1/2 feet. Then, with the title assured, Kinion let loose on her final attempt. "The pieces finally came together. Everything clicked," said Kinion, who had four throws in her series farther than 43 feet. "I don't know how much better it can be. I'm at my home track. I PR'd in two events, in one of them by 3 feet. This just feels awesome. There aren't the words to explain it."

The Bulldogs still had a shot at taking second in the team race, but they were hurt when junior sprinter Bree Skinner left the stadium before the 200 final, in which she had the third-fastest qualifying mark. "I'm pretty frustrated right now," said Pasco coach Paul Antonovich. I don't know all the facts about why she left. But there's a lot of other stuff going on right now, and if we can get some things cleared up, we'll be all right.

Richland's Cynthia Atencio took second in her first 3,200 of the season, finishing in 11:13.59. Atencio thought for a moment about taking off with defending Invite champion Mariel Ettinger of La Grande, but quickly thought better of it as Ettinger ended up winning in 10:48.37. "I realized she was pretty fit, and it'll be a few weeks before I'm ready to compete with her in the 3,200," Atencio said. "I just wanted to get through the race. I'd forgotten just how hard it is."

Four Pasco Invite meet records were set Saturday on the girls side of the program--Powell's 100 HH (14.14), Rainier Beach's 4x100 (48.38), Lewis & Clark's Distance Relay (12:31.46) and, in the new event for the Invite, Pendleton's Lisa Preston won the Pole Vault with a jump of 10 feet, 9 inches.


No boys 1,600-meter relay team in the state has an anchor to match Davis senior Tahvio Gratton. But don't forget legs 2 and 3. Taylor Stubblefield and JaQua Anderson were the reason the Pirates capped their team title Saturday at the 38th annual Pasco Invitational Track Meet with a meet-record 4x400 victory.

Stubblefield and Anderson made up a 40-meter deficit to give Gratton a slight lead--all the defending Class 4A and two-time Invite 400 champion would need. He pulled away from the rest of the field to win in a record 3 minutes, 18.6 seconds, more than two seconds ahead of Shadle Park. The victory gave Davis 67 points, good enough for its first Invite team title to snap Mead's three year streak. University, which beat out Davis for the 4A state title last year, took second with 44 points, with Kamiakin third.

Gratton also won the 200 and ran on the winning 4x100 team to take home Outstanding Male Athlete honors. "It wasn't easy. I had to work hard to win it," Gratton said. "There are a lot of great athletes here from all over the state. This is a real big award to win, especially for a meet this big."

With their usual first runner, Brandon Lee, sidelined by a pulled hamstring suffered at the end of Davis' 4x100 victory, the Pirates were in eighth place when Stubblefield received the baton for the second leg. Stubblefield slowly crept into position, then reeled in three runners in the final 50 meters to give Anderson the baton in fourth. Anderson, who took second to Gratton in the 400, made up the rest of the deficit and handed off to Gratton a step ahead of both Inglemoor and Shadle. "We anticipated we weren't going to have the lead," Gratton said. "We just played Pac-Man with the other teams. JaQua gave us a great third leg, and I just brought it home."

Kamiakin's trophy was the first in coach Keith Duncan's eight-year tenure and combined with the girls' title gave the Braves the combined team championship. "The kids really deserve something like this," Duncan said. "We have some kids stepping up who have some ability, and maybe they're figuring out that, 'Hey, we are that good.'" A pair of seniors led Kamiakin's trophy drive. Travis King took fourth in the 400 and anchored the fourth-place 4x400 team, and Deshain Beasley took second in the long jump, seventh in the 100 and anchored the second place 4x100 team. Lance Rendall added a fifth in the high jump.

Beasley's performance was especially gratifying after what he described as a disappointing 1998 Invite. He failed to make the finals in the long jump and 100, and he dropped the baton in the 4x100 with the Braves in the title hunt. "this is so much better than last year, it's crazy," said Beasley, wearing a smile. "It's redemption. I'm very happy with how I did."

Richland senior Ryan Moore won the Mid-Columbia's lone individual title, capturing the discus with a best of 168 feet, 2 inches. Moore was second in the event last year. In second after the preliminaries at 156-1, Moore took the lead by 3 feet on his second throw in the finals. He then uncorked the eventual winning throw on his final attempt, which was crucial because Sumner's Nyle Chambers followed with a 162-1 in the competition's final throw. "I already had the lead, so it took a little bit of the pressure off," said Moore, who also was third in the shotput in an area-best 53-9. "I knew I could go after it."

One Mid-Columbian expected to take home at least one title was Hanford's senior Adam Tenforde, who posted a national-best 8:57.19 in the 3,200 last week at the Arcadia(Calif.) Invitational. But Tenforde was knocked off by Caldwell, Idaho's Gene Betacourt in the 1,600 in a meet record 4:12.5. Then, doubling up in the 3,200 in the 72-degree heat, Tenforde pushed the pace for several laps before fading in the final 300 meters and finished sixth. Tenforde said he didn't regret his decision to come back in the 3,200. "This was my last time in the Tri-Cities to race against the best," Tenforde said. "I'm proud of myself even though I didn't get the finish I wanted. I know it would have been easier to sit, but it feels great to have taken a shot."

Four meet records were set in the boys meet, including the third-best triple jump ever by a Washington prepster--49-9 by Decatur senior Wesley Nurse. Nurse took over the state lead on his first attempt, then set the Invite mark on his second leap. He jumped so far, meet officials had to put a pad at the back of the pit as Nurse's momentum carried him through the sand. Nurse's coaches eventually decided to keep him out of the finals after a discussion about possibly creating a temporary board for him to jump from. "This is something I've been building towards," Nurse said. "I knew it would be tough competition. I saw a lot of people down there, and I didn't want to disappoint them or myself. I just tried to stretch each jump out as much as I could, and I had a sense of how far I jumped when the crowd reacted."

Shorewood junior Tim Morse tied the meet record in the pole vault by clearing 16 feet. He also won the long jump in 23-0, took sixth in the 100 and fifth in the 200 to singlehandly win the fourth place team trophy. "This feels a lot better than winning just a regular meet," he said. "Even at state, you're only going against your classification. This is the best of the best here."



Skinner wins the 200 and 400

April 15, 2000

Last year's Pasco Invitational was the nadir of Bree Skinner's high school track career. But as the Pasco senior walked off the Edgar Brown Stadium track for the final time Saturday afternoon, she wore a big smile, her comeback complete. Skinner won the 200 and 400 meters at the 39th annual Invite and anchored an injury-depleted 4x400 relay team to a fifth-place finish. "I couldn't have wished for a better day," Skinner said. "I'm just so happy, I'm ready to go to state right now."

Pasco finished fifth in the team standings, just four points behind Benson in the race for a trophy. Rainier Beach crossed the Cascades to pick up the team championship, with sophomore Ginny Powell repeating as Outstanding Female Athlete after successfully defending her 100 and 300 hurdles titles and leading off a 4x100 relay that set a meet record in 47.81 seconds. "My goal is to get it all four years," Powell said. "I try to perform every time I step on the track to the best of my ability. "Five girls meet records were set, including a state record in the polevault. Central Valley's Emily Roberts cleared 11 feet, 4 inches in the twilight to break the old mark, set by Lakeside of Seattle's Bryce Weed last year, by 1 inch.

The hometown crowd, though, delighted in Skinner's performance, especially after how last year's Invite turned out for her. Plagued by injuries, she left the stadium early, admittedly a confused runner. "I was a head case," Skinner said. "I psyched myself out last year. I'd feel someone coming up on me, and I'd lose all form and die out there. "But when she felt Benson's Deborah Jones coming up on her shoulder at the end of the 200, Skinner didn't feel her old panic. She held off Jones and Holy Names' Lindsey Smith, out leaning the duo to win in 25.90."Today closes a lot of wounds that were still open until now," said Skinner, who earlier breezed to the 400 title in 57.42, her first individual Invite titles since 1997 as a freshman. "These races today, I felt so strong, I not only met my standards physically, but mentally. From this day on, I'm not going to doubt myself any more. "Pasco's 4x400 team took a hit when senior Jennifer Henry injured her hip flexor early in the meet. Benson won the race in a meet-record 3:58.29.

Kamiakin junior Renee Wageman, twice an Invite winner in the 800, this year couldn't match the finishing kick of Blanchet's Rose Wetzel, who surged past Wageman on the final corner and won in 2:16.03."She just had a faster kick than me," said Wageman, who finished second in2:18.35. "I guess I know now how other people feel when I do that to them. "I'm not reading too much into this, though. It happened to me in regionals last year. I'm happy with this race. "Teammate Lindsey Johnson wasn't too happy after her day was complete despite picking up a pair of seconds in the 100 hurdles and triple jump. "I wasn't pleased with anything I did today," she said. "It was just a bad day. "Earlier, she wasn't quite so pessimistic.

Powell, the 3A state champion in the 100, 100 hurdles and 300 hurdles as a freshman, overpowered the 100hurdles field from the start in setting a meet record in 14.07, while Johnson held off Eisenhower's Heather Heron for second in 14.61."She's just amazing," Johnson said. "It's enjoyable going up against her. It's really good competition. "Two races later, Seattle Prep's Megan Johnson broke the meet record in the1,600 in a state-best 4:57.0. The lead pack was four runners for two laps before Johnson, bound for Notre Dame in the fall, broke away and sailed to a712-second victory over Gonzaga Prep's Carly Barnes. "That third lap, I decided to pick it up and just cruised that last lap," Johnson said. "I wanted to get some good competition over here and PR, and it worked out pretty well."

Lake Washington senior Cathrine Kraayeveld, the state's player of the year in basketball, swept the throws, capping her day with a come-from-behind win in the javelin. Her right elbow aching from earlier wins in the discus (a state-best 148-11)and shot put (43-812), she wasn't sure she'd throw in the javelin finals. "Maybe I'll try just one," she said. That first throw moved her into second, and with the pain still manageable, Kraayeveld kept throwing. On her final attempt, she launched the spear 145-7, passing leader StephanieUlmer of Ellensburg and missing the meet record by less than 3 feet. "I just thought to myself, 'Well, it's the finals. I should suck it up,' "said Kraayeveld, who bested her personal record by 20 feet in the javelin. "I'm glad that was my last one, though. I haven't thrown the javelin that much, so to win, I'm really happy about that." Southridge finished second in the 4x100 and the 4x200 relays, both in Mid-Columbia-leading times.

Buchanan ties Invite's 100 mark at 10.44

Anthony Buchanan set a record at Saturday's 39th annual Pasco Invitational track meet - just not the one he had in mind. The University senior tied the Invite record in winning the 100 meters in10.44 seconds, then came back to win the 200 in 21.69 to capture Outstanding Male Athlete honors.

Last week at the Davis Invitational in Yakima, he ran a hand-timed 20.7 in the 200, the fastest ever in the state, but not a state record because it was not Accutrack-timed. Rounding the corner Saturday, the record appeared in sight, but Buchanan felt himself tightening up on the straightaway and eased up - not that you could tell by his almost one-second victory margin. "It's kind of cool to be considered the best athlete of the meet with all the great athletes here," Buchanan said. "I'm definitely pleased with how I did. I felt good most of the day, but now I'm tired. I just want to get something to eat."

Buchanan came into the 100 final still loose from winning his 200 prelim. He overcame an average start to blow away the field by more than half a second to tie the mark set in 1997 by Ja'Warren Hooker, then an Ellensburg senior and now a University of Washington junior who will run the 100 at the Olympic trials. "I was kind of surprised. It wasn't a horrible start, but it certainly wasn't the best one," Buchanan said. "I just had to shift gears quicker to make up for it the rest of the race." With Buchanan's two titles and Max Schmidt winning the 3,200 and taking second in the 1,600, the Titans scored 51 points, good for second behind repeat champion Davis.

The Pirates got an individual title from Taylor Stubblefield in the triple jump (47 feet) and scattered points throughout the meet to win with 53 points. "This was definitely more of a team effort today," said Davis coach Scott Wells. "I feel real good about that." Two Mid-Columbians took home individual titles - Connell senior Ryan Wieseler's come-from-behind victory in the 800 and Prosser senior Jarrod Gibbons in the javelin. Wieseler hung back for the first 600 meters of his race before storming to the outside and passing Curtis' Brian Winters and Kennedy's Dan McLean on the corner and racing to victory in a personal-best 1:55.86.

"I couldn't believe that was me passing all those guys," Wieseler said. "It's the Pasco Invite, a dream come true. This is definitely a big confidence booster. It lets everyone know you're there." Gibbons hasn't been anywhere this season except the training room after injuring his throwing elbow boxing with a friend a month before track season. Grades also sidelined the 1998 3A state champion for a while, but he mustered one throw in the javelin prelims, and the 188-7 he posted stood up through five more rounds. "It didn't feel too bad," said Gibbons, who beat Pasco's Doug Vincent by 6 feet. "I thought it would be a lot worse than it was."

In the day's closest race, South Kitsap's Roger Cooper out leaned Darion Powell of Lake Washington to win the 110 hurdles by one-hundredth of a second in 14.59."I didn't know if I'd won. I just closed my eyes and felt the rope hit me," Cooper said. "But I knew he was kind of coasting in, so if I could get over the last hurdle clean, I could catch him." Powell came back to win the 300 hurdles in 38.47, just off his state-best time. The Kangaroos junior also took seventh in the shot put, while older brother Calen took fourth in the long jump and eighth in the 110 hurdles to lead LW to the fourth-place team trophy. Added with the girls' third-place finish, the Kangs won the combined title. Kennedy's Jeong Hwan-Kang became the 20th Washington boy ever to clear 7 feet in the high jump.



Good times had Pasco Invite

April 14, 2001

Kamiakin senior Jeff DeBuigne captured the essence of the Pasco Invitational at the breakfast table Saturday morning. "He told me, 'When you start thinking you're really good, you come to this meet,' " his mother, Renee, recalled while watching Jeff finish fifth in the boys discus in a personal-best 161 feet, 2 inches. " 'There'll be somebody better there.' "

Even if your name is Ginnie Powell, the principle applies. Powell, the Rainier Beach junior who was named the Invite's Outstanding Female Athlete the past two years, lost the first race of her high school career in the twilight Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium as her tired legs could carry her to only a third-place finish in the 200 meters. Of course, she'd already run on two winning relays (4x100, 4x200) and won the 100-meter hurdles in an Invite-record 13.79 seconds-the second-fastest time in state history - so she had a good explanation. Her effort was still good enough to win her a third Outstanding Athlete award.

"I was feeling queasy the whole day," Powell said. "That last race, my legs just tensed up the last couple of meters, and my stomach hurts right now." But it was OK long enough for her to challenge the state record of 13.77 set by Kay Garnett of Kennedy in 1979. Her stomach settled down during the two-hour break between the prelims and finals, which was broken only by her running a leg on the 4x200, and she blew away second-place finisher Danielle Ayers-Stamper of LaCrosse-Washtucna by more than a second.

"I came here wanting to break my (Invite) record and get into the 13s. I hadn't done that since I went to Poland (two years ago for the junior world championships)," Powell said. "I almost got the state record, but I'm not disappointed. It just gives me something to shoot for later."

Nor was Ayers-Stamper disappointed with her day. Not only did she become the first Class B girl to break 15 seconds in the 100 hurdles, but she immediately raced across the infield to the long jump runway and leaped 18 feet, 312 inches to win the title. "I got over there, and they told me I was next, so I just hopped over the fence and jumped," she said. "I was still warm off the hurdles, and it just felt like a good jump at the time. "Everyone was telling me this would be the biggest meet of the year, and I was really nervous coming in. But I think I concentrate more at a meet like this. I get more nervous, and it gets me psyched up."

Eisenhower won the girls title for the first time in the meet's 40-year history, holding off 2000 champion Rainier Beach and Benson Tech of Portland. The Techmen did have two trophies to cart back down Interstate 84, though - their boys easily won the team title and joined with the girls to win the combined title. "Every time we go out of town, we want to represent Portland," said Benson's Wiley King, who won the long jump and ran on the winning 4x100 team. "We've got stuff to prove in our own minds, so there's no pressure on us."

And if Shadle Park senior Michael Kiter didn't already enjoy his trips to Pasco, his performance at the Invite should convince him. The two-time 4A state cross country champion was named the Invite's Outstanding Male Athlete after anchoring the Highlanders' winning distance medley team, then coming back to win the 3,200 in a state-leading 9:09.8. "I'm honestly surprised. It's quite an honor," Kiter said. "I didn't expect it, but 9:09 is an awesome time, especially this early in the year."

In all, 17 state leaders emerged from the Invite, including hometown girl Rachel Ellison, who couldn't quite believe she'd won the 800 in 2:18.19. "I've never won a big race like this before. This is so new to me," the Pasco junior said. "But I'm going to have to get used to it. It's how it will be the rest of the year."

Mid-Columbia athletes fare well at 40th Invite

Two weeks ago, Ben Hampton hadn't cracked 40 feet in the triple jump. But the pressure cooker that is the Pasco Invitational can bring out the best in a track athlete. Just ask Hampton, a Southridge junior who Saturday leaped a career-best 44-814 and led most of the competition before getting edged by Wenatchee's Joe Haberman in the final round at Edgar Brown Stadium. "I thought when I came out here, in the first flight, that I'd be one of the worst," Hampton said. "Then I busted that 44-8, and I was like, 'Whoa!' I'm going to be bragging about this everywhere."

Haberman's winning jump of 45-3 highlighted a frantic final round that saw five of the eight placers improve their standing - including Hanford's Kyle Kraemer, who jumped a season-best 44-0 to finish fourth, and Pasco's Scott Horning, who capped the meet with a career-best 44-112 to move into third. Horning started the day with a strong showing in the 110-meter hurdles prelims (15.1 seconds) that couldn't get him into the finals. He ended it with a medal for a sixth in the long jump (career-best 21-114) and a plaque for his surprising triple jump. "I placed in the wrong events, but it was all good," Horning said, beaming. "At first, I was down, but after the long jump, I was all psyched for the triple jump."

In all, the Mid-Columbia claimed 48 places on the awards podium at the 40th annual Invite, led by Rachel Ellison's victory in the girls 800 meters for the host team and LaCrosse-Washtucna junior Danielle Ayers-Stamper's victory in the girls long jump. Twenty area bests also were set, including Richland senior Lindsay May breaking the school record in the girls triple jump on her first attempt at 36-5. May then tweaked her right hamstring on her third jump, prompting her to scratch out of the finals and settle for second behind Puyallup's Robin Harris. "I'm hoping it's not serious," she said. "I love this facility. Last year at regionals here, I broke the school record and qualified for state, and here I am at the same place, and I break it again. I like it even more now."

Doug Vincent also likes Edgar Brown - of course, he should, considering the Pasco senior was the 4A state player of the year in football for the state champion Bulldogs and won the regional javelin title last spring. Saturday, all he did was improve on his area-leading javelin throw with a 202-foot effort on his first attempt. Kelso's Rigel Wise, the state leader, promptly passed him and won with a 208-11, but considering Vincent got a late start to track season because of a disciplinary action, he was more than pleased with his finish. "I'm just starting to get back into the feel of things," Vincent said.

Hanford's Jonathan Hickey lowered his area best in the 1,600 by 15 seconds in placing fifth in a loaded race in 4:20.45. Three of the top four finishers, including winner Cameron Schwehr of Mount Spokane, were from the Greater Spokane League. "Before, I was in awe of those guys, but now I know I can run with them," Hickey said. "This is really good for me confidence-wise, because I've got half a season to go, and I know I can run faster."

Another area leader who improved her mark in a big way was Kiona-Benton sophomore McKenzie Burgess, who took third in the shot put with a best of 41-11, almost two feet farther than her previous best throw. "Last year, I finished 10th here, so I just wanted to improve on that," she said. "I don't know how I pulled that out, though. Getting a 41 is cool. I didn't expect to do that at all."


Stars outshine windy track

April 13, 2002

Sprinters Everhart, Powell dominate the field as usual at 41st Pasco Invite

All anybody could talk about at the beginning of Saturday's 41st annual Pasco Invitational track meet was the wind. By the end, the fleet feet of Craig Everhart and Deborah Jones stole the show. Everhart, the Lincoln senior who transferred to the Tacoma school in December from Davis, capped a stellar meet by anchoring the Abes' 1,600-meter relay team to victory in a state-best 3 minutes, 22.50 seconds. It was his third win of the day, helping Lincoln to the fourth-place team trophy, making him an easy choice for Outstanding Male Athlete honors. "I feel very proud and honored to win this award," said Everhart, who also won the 400 and defended his title in the 200. "I just went out and did what I could do."

Jones didn't win the Outstanding Female Athlete honor - Rainier Beach senior Ginnie Powell captured an unprecedented fourth award - but the Benson junior did just about everything else possible to help the Techmen from Portland to their first Invite team title. Jones defended her Invite title in the 100, then ran down Powell in the final meters and outleaned her to win the 200. Finally, she ran a leg on Benson's 4x400 team that blasted the meet record by almost three seconds. "Last year, we got second here, so this means a lot," Jones said. "I'm just mad my parents aren't here to see this."

The Techmen dominated despite running in unaccustomed conditions - 35 mph winds that kicked up dust from along the sides of Edgar Brown Stadium, a former gravel pit. "It was tough to run in this today," said Jones, who still managed to post decent times of 12.40 in the 100 and 25.04 in the 200. "Being from Portland, we weren't used to it."

Neither was Powell, who was the sentimental choice of the coaches for Outstanding Athlete, and it's not as if she had a bad day -except, perhaps, by her standards. She defended her 100 hurdles title in a state-leading 13.87 and ran the second leg of Rainier Beach's victorious 4x100 relay. She left right after the 200 to rest up for next week's prestigious Mount Sac Relays in California, said her coach, Ron Howard. "She was just tired," Howard said. "The wind took its toll on everybody really hard. She's just an outstanding athlete. This says alot for her to win that award four straight years."

Mead won the boys team title for the first time since 1998 and ninth time overall. Benson defended its combined title. Southridge's girls took home their first team trophy, finishing third behind Jana Manis' victory in the high jump and Nicole Hatcher's second in the 100 and third in the 200. "Isn't that exciting? We were so pumped," said Suns coach Cheryl Schauble. "When they showed up Friday at practice, I could tell they were scared, but they sure bucked up and did what they were capable of doing." Manis, a sophomore, won a jumpoff with defending Invite champion Robin Mikesh of Auburn-Riverside to win the high jump. Both were the only jumpers to clear 5 feet, 4 inches. After going out at 5-6, both were given another jump at 5-4, and each missed. The bar was dropped to 5-3, and Manis went first, clearing it while Mikesh missed. "That was nervewracking. I hope I don't have to do that again," said Manis, who avenged a poor showing at the Invite as a freshman. "I just wanted to place in the top 10 after how I did here last year. "I put too much pressure on myself then. This year, I just wanted to have fun and not worry too much."

McKenzie Burgess' friends usually provide the pressure for the Kiona-Benton junior, talking her up before the shot put. Burgess was left to letting her performance speak for itself when they didn't show Saturday. The state leader coming into the Invite, Burgess improved her personal-best by 1712 inches with a 43-712 throw in the first round of the finals. "Usually when I get over there, I have to go up to the guys and say, 'OK, what did you say about me? What do I have to do today?'" she said, laughing. "But they ditched me to go fishing today." The conditions weren't ideal for fishing - or for many outdoor activities - on this day.

The girls long jumpers ran into the teeth of the wind throughout their competition, but LaCrosse-Washtucna senior Danielle Ayers-Stamper cut through it to win her second straight Invite title. She was the lone jumper to go past 18 feet, jumping 18-012 in the prelims and improving to 18-1 in the finals. Ayers-Stamper also duplicated her second-place finish to Powell in the 100 hurdles and declared her day a success. "Last year was a thrill," she said. "This year was a lot more serious, so it means a lot more." The wind died down in time for the boys triple jump, which suited Southridge senior Ben Hampton just fine. He enjoys calmer conditions, as evidenced by his victorious leap of 46-912 - a personal-best by a foot and a 2002 state best. Afterward, he said he had to set his goals a little higher for the rest of the year. "I had my goal written on the back of my hand all week," Hampton said, showing off a "47" in red lettering. "But now, it's going up to 49 feet. I know I didn't get 47 today, but I can still move it up. All I can do is keep going up."

Mid-Columbians show mettle-Area athletes collect 51 awards

Jeff Luckstead came into Saturday's 41st running of the Pasco Invitational with little ballyhoo. Leon Jackson just wanted a little respect. When both left Edgar Brown Stadium, they had established themselves as runners to watch at next month's 4A state meet in Tacoma. After posting the fastest qualifying time in the 110-meter high hurdles in the morning, Luckstead finished second to Central Kitsap's Dustin Wilson in the final in 14.93 seconds while bucking a steady headwind. "I was expecting to do well, but getting second, I wasn't expecting that," said Luckstead, a Walla Walla senior who didn't even qualify for regionals last year and came into the Invite with only the 10th-fastest time in the state. In the prelims, with the wind - which gusted to as much as 35 mph during the afternoon - at his back, Luckstead won his heat in 14.3. "The wind didn't matter today," Luckstead said. "Everyone runs with the same wind. I just had fun today."

The wind mattered greatly to Jackson, a Kamiakin freshman who had run a 10.7 in the 100 earlier this year - but with a strong wind at his back, which gave people pause to question his credentials. Not any more, though, after Jackson placed second in both the 100 and 200, finishing behind two-time Invite champions in both - Antwaun Sherman of Benson in the 100, Craig Everhart of Lincoln in the 200. "I was really nervous coming in, but my coaches said I could give Craig a challenge in the 200, and that's what I tried to do," Jackson said. "Yeah, I think I proved myself. I'm real proud of myself. And I've got three more years of this." Luckstead and Jackson took home just three of 51 plaques, medals or ribbons won by Mid-Columbians on Saturday, not including Southridge's third-place finish in the girls team standings.

Also posting a second-place finish was Hanford's Jonathan Hickey, who ran the race of his career in the 1,600, cutting six seconds of his personal-best to finish in 4:14.42, just six-tenths behind winner Courtney Jaworski of Curtis. He went with Jaworski and Auburn's Chris Lukezic when they broke away from the lead pack midway through the race, then passed Lukezic into second when the Trojans senior bonked toward the end. "I had decided before the race that I would go with the leaders no matter what," said Hickey, who scratched from the 3,200 because of blisters on his feet. "I was really surprised by my last lap, though. I'm usually not that big a kicker." Hickey is known more as a 3,200 runner - he placed fifth at the 3A state meet in that event last May - but showed he will be a challenger in the 1,600 this year as well. "I ran a really good 2-mile at the beginning of the year," Hickey said. "Today, I wanted to get a good mile in. I think now I have a good chance to win both at state."

Southridge's Nicole Hatcher picked up a pair of second-place medals in helping the Suns win their first-ever team trophy. Fighting a cold that kept her out of practice Friday and allergies from the dust kicked up by the wind, Hatcher was runner-up to two-time Invite champion Deborah Jones of Benson in the 100, took third in the 200 - both career-best finishes at the Invite - and ran on Southridge's second-place 4x200 and fourth-place 4x400. Afterward, she hoped her good showing was a good omen for the state meet, where she is looking to improve on a pair of runner-up finishes in 2001. "I sure hope so," said Hatcher, who went home after school Friday and slept for much of the rest of the evening. "Coach (Cheryl) Schauble has us running a lot right now, and I think when we taper off, my times will come down a lot."

Rachel Ellison also came into the meet feeling miserable, but that didn't make the Pasco senior feel much better about her third-place finish in the 800 one year after winning the title on her home track. On Thursday in a Big Nine double-dual, Ellison ran the 100, 200 and 400 as a sprint workout. Then Saturday she ran the 1,600 - she finished fifth - three hours before her 800 heat. She had little left in the tank to challenge winner Amanda Miller of Eastmont, coming in four seconds behind in 2:22.21. "I didn't feel good today at all," Ellison said. "I was still sore from Thursday, and they put me in the mile on top of that. I guess I can't be too disappointed with my time or place, but I'm not content at all."

Grandview's Lydia Boswell and Columbia-Burbank's Terran Legard finished 2-3 in the 400 behind defending Oregon 4A champion Brandi Probasco-Canda.


Pasco Invite brings out state's elite

April 19, 2003

The Pasco Invitational always seems to bring out the best in everyone.

Even Mother Nature cooperated Saturday for the 42nd edition, drenching Edgar Brown Stadium in sunshine and producing the best day most of the track and field competitors had seen all season.

"This was a great experience to have the sun actually out," said Skyview junior Kara Patterson, who took advantage of the ideal conditions to break the meet record in the girls javelin with a throw of 157 feet, 6 inches. "My personal best was 150 feet, and I wanted to live up to that. I didn't expect to throw seven feet farther. It was a lot of fun." Patterson's was the lone meet record set Saturday, but the Mid-Columbia record in the boys 110-meter hurdles fell in the morning preliminaries as Kiona-Benton senior Barry Leavitt blistered the track in 14.20 seconds, breaking Trent Ady of Pasco's 7-year-old mark of 14.37. That Leavitt won the final in "only" 14.72, then took second to rival John Cassleman of Pullman in the 300 hurdles didn't detract from the record any. "With good competition, I get my fastest times," said Leavitt, the first of three area champions -- Kennewick's Erika Kirley (girls discus) and Richland's boys 4x400 later joined him. "My prelims felt really good. I'm just getting myself ready for state."

Carl Moe said pretty much the same thing after the Auburn Riverside senior was named Outstanding Male Athlete for winning the 800 in 1:54.03 and anchoring the Ravens' winning distance medley with a blistering 4:11 leg in the 1,600. "This is the first year I've ever had good races here," said Moe, who should contend in the 1,600 and 3,200 at next month's state meet at Edgar Brown. "This gives me the confidence that I can run here and do well."

While Moe should adopt Pasco as his hometown -- he won the state cross country title at Sun Willows Golf Course in November -- the newest Bulldog had a strong debut as Leon Jackson narrowly lost the 100 title to Olympic's Jarell Nelson. Jackson, the defending 100 state champion, was running his first race for Pasco since transferring last month from Kamiakin. He didn't know what to expect coming in, so his 10.96 time -- two-hundredths behind Nelson -- left him smiling. "I'm satisfied with this," Jackson said. "It was my first meet, and it's a big meet, so there's no reason for me to hang my head."

Mead won the boys team title for the second straight year, edging Stadium of Tacoma and double-winner Darren Woods by two points and Richland by three. Curtis of Tacoma, led by Outstanding Female Athlete Sarah Burns' wins in the 100 and long jump, won the girls and combined titles. "This means a lot," said Burns, who won the 100 in a state-best 12.32 and the long jump in 18-9. "I've been running since I was 8, and I just love it, but I haven't ever done this well until now." Woods dominated the 200 and 400 as expected, winning the latter in cruise control by almost a full second in 48.65, then coming back to win the 200 in a state-best 21.79. "I got to get familiar with the track, to know where I need to make certain adjustments," Woods said. "And it was good to see the guys I won't see now until state, because I know it's not going to be easy."

Erika Kirley admits she hasn't done her best in big meets. The Kennewick senior hopes her performance at Saturday's 42nd annual Pasco Invitational signals a change for the better. Kirley came through on her final discus throw to pass Kiona-Benton's McKenzie Burgess and win the title with a throw of 136 feet, 7 inches. As Kirley prepared for her final try, she sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow to calm herself. "I knew I needed to pass her, so I wanted to keep my mind clear," Kirley said. "I just went for it."

Kirley was one of three Mid-Columbia winners at Edgar Brown Stadium on Saturday, along with Ki-Be senior Barry Leavitt in the 110-meter hurdles and Richland's boys 4x400 relay. The Bombers' win pushed them to third in the team standings, just three points behind two-time champion Mead. "Any time you place at Pasco, it means you have a chance to place at state," said Richland coach Jim Qualheim. "And we didn't really show our hand today. I think some of our best athletes are going to do even better later." Kirley hopes that statement applies to her in the next month as well. Her career has been full of ups and downs, the latter especially coming at the most important meets. "I've been here four years, and I never have been even close to finishing first," said Kirley, whose previous best Invite finish was seventh in 2001. "In the past, I haven't shown a lot of growth mentally, but I believe I've matured a ton this year. I know now that I can work under pressure."

Faire then popped a 43-00.5 on her final attempt, and Burgess could only counter with a 41-8.5 -- her best of the day, but not good enough. "How the discus ended motivated me for the shot to not let it happen to me again," Burgess said. "And then it did. It's a killer. The Invite is my favorite event and this is my best event, and this was my last time."

Leavitt made his last appearance in Pasco a memorable one, breaking Trent Ady of Pasco's Mid-Columbia record in the 110 hurdles prelims before dominating the final. His time of 14.20 seconds in the morning erased Ady's seven-year-old mark of 14.37 from the record books. He came back to win the final in 14.72, then took second in the 300 hurdles to rival John Cassleman of Pullman. "The 110s really boosted my confidence," Leavitt said. "I wish my time had been a little better in the finals, but I'm happy that I won. And now I know what I have to do to improve in the 300s. I'm pleased with how the day went."

Also pleased was Richland's quartet of Steve Adelmund, David Van Unen, Mike Robinson and Eddie Strickler in the day's final race, in which the Bombers ran a state-leading 3:25.12 and won by two seconds over Renton. "My team put me in first, and I didn't want to let them down," said Strickler, who ran the anchor leg. "This is a pretty big event, and to do well here puts us in good position for down the road." Strickler also took fourth in the 800 in an area-best 1:56.64 despite having to fight through heavy traffic at the start of the race, and Van Unen took sixth in the 400 in an area-best 50.61.

Michael Clay took third in the 100 behind Jarell Nelson of Olympic and defending state champion Leon Jackson, running his first race for Pasco since transferring in late February from Kamiakin. The Bombers also took fourth in the 4x100 to total 29 points. Jackson expected his toughest competition to come from Kamiak's Derrick Bradley, who finished third to Jackson at last year's 4A state meet. But Bradley scratched from the race, and instead it was Nelson who outleaned Jackson to win in 10.94, two-hundredths faster than Jackson. "We were up there together the whole way, and then for some rason, I tilted to his side and lost my stride," Jackson said. "That's how he got me."

One of the biggest surprises among area athletes for the day was Southridge senior Dustin Golding's third-place finish in the 200. Golding hadn't broken 23 seconds until Saturday, when he ran a 22.31. "I was hoping to make the finals, like everybody here does," said Golding, who also finished sixth in the high hurdles before setting the school record in the 200. "But when I got in the blocks, I knew I'd do well. I felt ready. "The hurdles are still my main focus, but obviously I'm competitive now in the 200. This is great. I'll just excel in two races now."

Southridge's Kristin Singleton took second in the long jump in a season-best 17-7.25, while teammate Jana Manis lost out on a second straight Invite high jump title on a tiebreaker after clearing 5-4.

Other top performances by Mid-Columbians included:

Hanford's Thomas Seely, who tied for second in the pole vault by matching his season-best of 14-6, Aaron Gunn, who lowered his school record in the 200 to 22.38 in finishing fourth, and Husein Pistoljevic, who took third in the triple jump in 44-31Ú4;

Kamiakin's Travis Minnich, who threw an area-best 178-11 in the javelin to finish fifth;

Grandview's Lydia Boswell, who ran an area-best 58.68 in the 400 to finish fifth;

Kamiakin's Kristi Jensen, who lowered her area-best in the 3,200 to 11:23.09 in finishing fourth;

Richland's girls 4x400, which ran an area-best 4:06.00 to finish third.

The day was not without some tragedy. Walla Walla senior Karen Walters, running as a substitute in the 3,200, caught a spike on the first turn midway through the race and broke the femur in her right leg. She was taken by ambulance to Our Lady of Lourdes hospital.


Record-breaking day sees 6 set state marks at Pasco

April 17, 2004

Hanford junior Cathey earns javelin victory

Mother Nature tried to rain on the parade at Saturday's 43rd annual Pasco Invitational. But when the sun broke through, it started pouring record performances all over Edgar Brown Stadium. The best was saved for last, of course, as Jefferson's Kyle Jenkins broke the 27-year-old state record in the triple jump -- one of six meet records to fall -- earning him Outstanding Male Athlete honors. "This means a lot," said Jenkins, whose leap of 50 feet, 2 inches on his first attempt broke the old mark by Wilson's Aaron Williams by 1 1/4 inches. "This is a huge meet, with so many great athletes. It's an honor."

Becca Noble of Rogers (Spokane) was named Outstanding Female Athlete after winning the 400 meters in a meet-record time of 54.93 seconds and taking second in the 800 behind Everett's Cori Moore, who also set a meet record in 2:14.42 to Noble's 2:15.78. "This is surprising," Noble said. "I never thought I'd get it."

The lone area athlete to win at the Invite this year was Hanford junior Tyler Cathey, who won the boys javelin with a throw of 194-0 on his first attempt. "I was a little nervous," said Cathey, who had all six throws in his series over 180 feet. "But I knew if I could get down that first throw, I'd be able to have a great day."

It also was a great day for Kent-Meridian's LaShawnda Porter, who won the girls 100 and 200 titles, the latter in a meet-record 24.51, erasing hometown girl Bree Skinner's 7-year-old mark. "That's the most nervous I've been before a race," Porter said of the 200. "This is a bigger meet than state. You go against everybody here. And that was the best race I've ever run." Also setting meet records were Roosevelt's Norris Frederick in the long jump (24-1 1/2) and Kentridge's James Fredrickson in the 300 hurdles (37.86). Among the double-winners were Curtis' Sarah Burns, who won the girls long jump and ran on two winning relays, and Bainbridge's Matt Wauters, who won the boys discus in a personal-best 181-1 and shot put in a pedestrian (for him) 60-11. "I'm beat up right now," said Wauters, who has gone 64-8 1/2 this season. "I'm going to take a couple of days off and see if I can get better."

Two days prior to the Pasco Invitational, Hanford junior Tyler Cathey felt so ill that he sat out a Mid-Valley League dual meet in Prosser. He didn't feel much better Friday, giving him little time to work out the kinks in his javelin approach in time for Saturday's meet at Edgar Brown Stadium. "So today, I just had to go out without practicing," he said. "I guess it worked out." It worked out so well, Cathey was the lone Mid-Columbian to win a title at the 43rd annual Invite with a throw of 194 feet. So while Cathey lost the state lead in the event -- King's sophomore Michael Davis went 204-8 at the Cashmere Invitational on Saturday, moving into second place in the nation -- he regained some of the confidence he'd lost since throwing a 200-5 on April 1, then not coming close since. "After that throw, I was thinking too much, and I changed what I was doing," Cathey said. "Now I'm focusing on the speed on my approach, on big, powerful crossovers."

Soon, though, Cathey's victory was overshadowed by a trio of boys meet records that fell by the wayside, including Kyle Jenkins of Jefferson jumping a state-record 50-2 in winning the triple jump. He broke a 27-year-old mark set by Wilson's Aaron Williams in 1977 of 50-0 3/4, and he also broke the 5-year-old Invite record of 49-9 set by Wesley Nurse of Decatur. "When that storm came through earlier, I didn't know if I could do it," said Jenkins, who was named Outstanding Male Athlete of the meet. "But I knew right after I made that jump that it was 50 or real close." Jenkins set his second record in as many trips to Edgar Brown. Last May, he won the 4A state title in a meet-record 49-8 1/2, then Saturday he became just the third Washington boy to crack the 50-foot barrier on his first attempt. "Now, I'm just wanting to see what I do here at state," said Jenkins, who wants to go 51 feet before heading to Indiana University on a full ride next season.

Also setting a meet record on the runway in the northeast corner of the stadium was Roosevelt's Norris Frederick, who won the long jump in 24-1 1/2 two days after jumping 24-5 in a league meet. But Frederick prides himself as a high jumper -- he won the 4A state title last year and cleared 7 feet during the indoor season -- so he was less than thrilled when he went only 6-6 to win the high jump. "I'm happy to get a 24, but I'm a high jumper, and I'm sick of jumping just 6-6," said Frederick, who only took up long jumping this year because "I was getting bored at meets." Walla Walla's David Ridenour had a prime spot to watch the record-setting performances. Ridenour broke the school record in the long jump in finishing second in 23-3 1/4, then came back to finish sixth in the triple jump in 45-7, "It was quite impressive," Ridenour said. "It's once in a lifetime to see someone go 50 feet. It turned out to be a great day to jump, andthe competition just pushes you a little more to get out there with your jumps."

Kentridge's James Frederickson swept the hurdles titles, winning the 110-meter highs in 14.32 seconds before taking the 300s in a meet-record 37.86. Frederickson matched his sweep of the 4A state hurdles titles but said this was a harder feat. "You're going up against people you'll never see again," he said. "I like going up against good competition. And it's where state is held. That inspires me."

Benson of Portland stopped Mead's two-year streak of boys titles, edging the Panthers by one point with Jefferson third and Shelton fourth. Richland junior Michael Clay finished third in the 100 in 11.40. Other area placers were Pasco's 4x100 (fifth, 44.02); Walla Walla's Dan Purefoy in the javelin (sixth, 171-2); Prosser's Nectaly Barbosa in the 1,600 (seventh, 4:22.43); Southridge's Jason Tuck in the shot put (sixth, 51-8 1/2) and Roy Silliman in the pole vault (seventh, 13-6); Kiona-Benton's Tyler Watts in the long jump (eighth, 22-1 1/2); and Riverside's Josh Kegler in the 200 (eighth, 23.10).

Rogers' Noble top girl athlete

Everything was going perfectly for Rogers junior Becca Noble until the elements took a turn for the worse Saturday at the Pasco Invitational at Edgar Brown Stadium. "It started raining," Noble said. "And I don't like the rain." Apparently, it liked her. Noble earned the girls' Outstanding Athlete Award behind her incredible performance in the 400-meter dash. Just as the rain was letting up, Noble didn't, and her time of 54.93 seconds was good enough for a Pasco Invite record. Amazingly enough, it wasn't a personal record for Noble. She ran a 54.8 earlier this season in GSL competition. Noble also grabbed a second-place finish in the 800, where she finished one second behind Everett's Cori Moore's meet-record 2:14.42. Not bad for Noble's first year running the 800. "I'm kind of still figuring out when to turn it on (in the 800)," Noble said. "I'll feel more confident next year when I figure out to run it."

Benson's participants didn't deliver any performances like Noble's, but the Portland school's model of consistency helped it to a first-place team finish. Sara Callier was the only individual winner for Benson -- a triumph in the triple jump -- but the Techmen featured three second-place finishers and they also took second in the 4x100 and 4x200 relays. Curtis, which took second place, was the closest competition, and it was 14 1/2 points away. Kent-Meridian, which finished sixth overall, got a big boost from senior LaShawnda Porter, who turned heads with her record-setting performance in the 200. When she blew by Jaqua Williams of Rainer Beach and Benson's Callier to set a new Pasco Invite standard at 24.51 seconds, no one was more surprised than her.

"I really expected to be behind (Williams) and even (Callier), because she had a smoking preliminary time," Porter said. "Having them in the same race as me really gave me a boost. I'm really excited because for me this is bigger than state; it seems like the best athletes always come here." Porter was among them, as she also finished first in the 100 with a time of 12.65. Porter wasn't the only runner surprised with herself. Curtis senior Sarah Burns was taken back by how well she didn't do. "I thought that I would do better in the long jump, but I'm happy with the relays," said Burns, who won with a jump of 17 feet, 9.75 inches, almost two feet off her career-best set last year at state in Pasco. "I think I could've jumped further, but I had to wait so long; our coach kind of wants us to save something for state." If Burns wanted to use excuses, she could've pointed to the hamstring strain she's pulled twice in the last five months. Oddly enough, though, Burns was complaining in victory. Besides the long jump, she anchored the Vikings' 4x100 and 4x200 relays to victories.

One of the best duels of the day came in the long jump, which featured West Valley (Spokane) senior Kayla Mainer. For at least 15 minutes, Mainer traded jumps with Skyview sophomore Jasmine Kelly. Finally, when Kelly missed her attempt at 5-7, Mainer cleared it to win the title. Mainer's need for a competitor showed when she had three opportunities to leap 5-8 but came well short. As Mainer pointed out though, she had already notched her personal best.

Kennewick's best wasn't good enough when it came to the 4x400. The Lions finished fourth, but Katie Schwisow looked as though she had won when she walked off of the track. "We dropped five seconds from our personal best the first time we ran, and now we just dropped six," Schwisow said in amazement after Kennewick finished in an area-best 4:06.66. "I was just trying to run hard and stay relaxed. It's great to do well here, because you feel like you should being that it's held in the Tri-Cities."

Other area placers were Kamiakin's Michaela Haggett in the 100 hurdles (fourth, 15.76) and Dani Schuster in the 800 (seventh, 2:20.31); Richland's Kayla McKeirnan in the 100 (sixth, 13.13), 200 (seventh, 26.14) and long jump (sixth, 16-11 3/4) and the Bombers 4x100 (fourth, 50.45); Walla Walla's distance medley (seventh, 13:18.33); Hanford's Kasey Hostetler in the long jump (fourth, 17-4) and 4x200 (seventh, 1:47.27); javelin throwers Krista Hughes of Pasco (sixth, 121-0); and Connell's Ashley Price in the high jump (tie-fourth, 5-2).


Records, rain fall at 44th Pasco Invitational

The Pasco Invitational started with a bang and ended with one.  There were plenty in between, too, as Mother Nature forced a half-hour delay to Saturday's 44th running of the nation's largest one-day meet with a thunderstorm that had the fans at Edgar Brown Stadium oohing and aahing at the lightning streaks.  But in the end, of course, they saved their biggest cheers for the true stars of the show.  Three meet records were set, including an all-time state record in the first event of the day -- Bellarmine Prep of Tacoma in the girls distance medley -- and Moreno Zapata of Curtis (Tacoma) finishing the meet with a record triple jump.

And in between, to no one's surprise, there was the darling of Pasco, Rogers (Spokane) senior Becca Noble.   "It's Pasco, I guess. I just love it," Noble said after breaking her own one-year-old record in the 400 meters, winning in 54.40 seconds. She later won the 200 in 24.70 and repeated as the meet's Outstanding Female Athlete.  There even was a hometown champion as Bulldogs senior Carly Mauch threw a personal-best 138 feet, 8 inches on her fifth attempt in the javelin to edge Arlington's Jasmine McCormack by 5 inches.  "I don't think it's hit me yet," said Mauch, Pasco's first Invite champion since Rachel Ellison won the 800 in 2001. "The whole day, I was like, 'I can't wait for the javelin.' It's exciting to win."  Her win made it a sweep of the javelin by purple-clad Tri-Citians. Hanford senior Tyler Cathey, in his first meet since undergoing minor knee surgery over spring break, uncorked a school-record 206-6, best in the state this season, on his second attempt to repeat as Invite champion. The third area champion was Prosser sophomore Nectaly Barbosa, who bounced back from a second-place finish in the 1,600 to capture the 800 in an area-best 1:55.25.

Benson of Portland repeated as girls and combined team champion, but the Techmen boys were edged by Bothell 40-36 for the title.   Wenatchee senior Tom Ballinger was named Outstanding Male Athlete for a strong all-around performance. He won the 300 hurdles, his best event, in 38.01 seconds, took second in the 110 hurdles, third in the 400 and seventh in the 200.  "I knew I could get through the 300 hurdles no matter how dead I was feeling," said Ballinger, who singlehandedly won the fourth-place team trophy for the Panthers, "so I knew I could go for broke in the 400."

That was Bellarmine's attitude in the distance medley. Neither Lions senior Brie Felnagle, the defending 800 and 1,600 state champion who's headed to North Carolina in the fall, nor freshman sensation Nicole Cochran entered an individual race so they could focus all their attention on the seldom-run event.   "That was our whole reason for coming here," Felnagle said.   It paid off as the team, which also included Megan Kelly and Brianna Okoro, shattered the old mark (12.19.7 by University in 1992), winning in 11:54.37.  "We knew we needed to drop two seconds off our time, but we didn't expect this at all," said Felnagle, who ran a 4:45 anchor 1,600-meter leg. "It was perfect, though. It wasn't too hot. And now we get to hang out the rest of the day."

The day stretched into the night, but in the twilight, Zapata took advantage of Pasco's lightning-quick runway to post the second-best triple jump in state history and become only the fifth all-time to jump more than 50 feet.  He came close on his first two jumps in the prelims, going first 49-9, then 49-10. Finally, on his first attempt in the finals, with a wind reading just under the legal limit, he went 50-3.25 to break the year-old mark set by Kyle Jenkins of Thomas Jefferson.  Only Rashad Toussaint of West Valley (Spokane), who went 50-8.75 last week, has jumped farther.  Zapata's performance also means four of the eight best triple jumps in state history have come at Edgar Brown.  "As a jumper, you know when you hit one. You can feel it inside you," said Zapata, whose previous career-best was 48-7. "I was not hooked on getting a certain distance. I was just thinking about my technique. It wasn't about how far, but just doing things right."   Zapata didn't rest on his laurels. On his next jump, he went a wind-aided 50-11.5, which he needed when Toussaint jumped a wind-aided 50-9 on his final attempt.   "I'll tell people 50-11.5 is my personal-best," Zapata said, smiling. "But I'll definitely tell them it was wind-aided, then I'll tell them my 'real' (making quote marks with his fingers) mark.   "But I don't plan on keeping it at 50-11.5, either."  There were two other double winners, both on the girls side -- Bonners Ferry (Idaho) sophomore Kaitie Poston in the shot and discus, and Benson's Sara Callier in the long and triple jumps.

Cathey, Barbosa win Pasco Invite titles

Tyler Cathey wore a large black brace on his right knee and a smile on his face.  The brace was because of minor surgery he underwent the Monday during spring break to repair an injury suffered during basketball season.  The smile was because Cathey, a Hanford senior, was competing for the first time since the surgery, about to defend his javelin title at the 44th annual Pasco Invitational at Edgar Brown Stadium. "How's the knee?" he said. "We'll have to see when I throw."  Turns out the knee was sore when the competition was done, but the smile had grown even bigger. Cathey threw a school-record 206 feet, 6 inches, best in the state this year, to capture his second straight title.  "I used all of the board. I almost scratched," Cathey said of the throw, the second in the preliminary round.  A half-hour thunderstorm that drenched the facility and delayed the awards ceremony forced Cathey to leave before he could receive his plaque -- he had to get ready for Hanford's prom that night -- but his coach, Clay Lewis, was plenty excited.  "He hasn't been in the saddle these last three weeks," Lewis said. "But he had a good practice Wednesday and had his confidence up enough to know he could throw well. I'm pretty proud of him."

Also having plenty to celebrate was Prosser sophomore Nectaly Barbosa, who won the 800 meters in a season-best 1 minute, 55.25 seconds, after earlier finishing second in the 1,600 to Auburn Riverside's Jordan McNamara.  Barbosa, who set the state freshman records in the 800 and 1,600 last year, had his cross country season derailed by injuries but is making up for lost time this spring.  In the 1,600, he bided his time for 3 1/2 laps in third place behind McNamara and frontrunner Chris Rodriguez of Kelso. He passed both runners entering the final corner, but McNamara -- who flew into Pasco in the morning after a fourth-place finish at Friday's Gerry Lindgren Invitational 2-mile race in Salt Lake City -- surged past him in the final 100 meters to win in 4:18.04 to Barbosa's 4:18.58.  Barbosa followed his now-familiar strategy in the 800, making his move with 200 to go and outkicking Martin Romero-Clark of Benson (Portland) to win by more than a second.  "I wanted to make sure to win this thing," Barbosa said. "I thought I was going to be running on fumes because of the mile. That race hurt, and I thought I didn't have anything left, but instead I had a lot."  McNamara also was surprised by his finishing kick, considering his draining run at the 4,000-foot altitude less than 18 hours earlier.  "I felt really bad. My legs were really dead before the race," McNamara said. "My coaches said not to run if I wasn't up to it, but I knew I would run no matter what. I had some of my friends here, so I had to run." 

While Barbosa was winning the 800, Richland senior Kevin Merkling showed he'll be a threat to get to state in six weeks in the same event with a fourth-place finish in 1:57.02, cutting nearly 1 1/2 seconds off his personal best.  "It's a confidence builder," Merkling said. "It's definitely clearing a hurdle on my way to state. But I also have to remember it's just the Pasco Invite. There's still a long way to go in the season."

The only other top-three finish posted by an area athlete was by Richland senior Josh Woehle, who cleared 14-3 in the pole vault to finish third. He moved into ninth place on the all-time Mid-Columbia list with his vault.  Also placing from the region were:  Moses Lake sophomore Aaron Wafer in the 100 (eighth, 11.02) and 200 (eighth, 22.92);  Kamiakin senior Matt Miller in the 800 (eighth, 1:59.39);  Kiona-Benton junior Holden Leavitt in the 110 hurdles (fifth, 14.95);  Kamiakin junior Kyle Schauble in the 110 hurdles (eighth, 15.04) and 300 hurdles (seventh, 40.54);  Walla Walla junior Adam Hair in the 300 hurdles (sixth, 40.32);  Southridge senior Shane Hampton in the long jump (seventh, 21-3) and triple jump (fifth, 45-0);  Hanford sophomore Keefe Brockman in the high jump (seventh, 6-2);  Kamiakin senior Kyle Duncan, Southridge senior Roy Siliman and Moses Lake junior Kraig Grant, who all tied for sixth in the pole vault at 13-6; Moses Lake senior David Moore in the javelin (178-11).

Mauch sets personal record in winning javelin crown

Pasco javelin thrower Carly Mauch should've been basking in the glow of her triumph Saturday at the Pasco Invite.  Instead, she was basking in the collection of talent around her.  "I look over and I'm watching Becca Noble, and then I see the throw by that girl from Idaho (Bonners Ferry sophomore Kaitie Poston) and I'm just going, 'Whoa,' " Mauch said. "I was watching everyone in amazement and just realizing that everyone deserves to be here."  Including Mauch. But she had to overcome some early nerves before she could prove it.  The competitor throwing before Mauch bested Mauch's personal record by a foot.  "It made me nervous, but I had to buckle down," Mauch said.  And she did, uncorking a throw of 138 feet, 8 inches -- a new personal record -- and beating out second-place Jasmine McCormack of Arlington by five inches.

Rogers of Spokane's Becca Noble, who's becoming almost legendary in track circles, wowed the Pasco patrons yet again.  The senior breezed to unchallenged victories in the 200 and 400 meters -- the latter in a meet-record time of 54.40 seconds -- on her way to being named the Most Outstanding Female Athlete of the invite.  Just another day at the track for Noble, who was so undaunted by her fellow competitors that she had time to worry about separate matters.  "This is the first race I've ran without wearing socks," said Noble, pointing down at her spikes. "My coach always talks about me running for times, because (he says) 'Who's going to be running in front of you?' I run against the clock." Which is precisely the opposite for most competitors, who view the Pasco Invite as a chance to measure themselves against the region's best competitors.  Cedar Park Christian's Jane Larson found out a great deal about where she stacks up. Outlasting Bellevue junior Kelsey Walker, she won the 1,600, then later finished fourth in the 3,200.  "I haven't run against this kind of competition all year, and to be able to come here and hang with these runners is great," said Larson, who caught Walker in the final 200 meters.

Benson's Sara Callier won the long and triple jumps with soggy sand conditions that worked to her advantage.  "It rains so much in Portland that I'm used to it," she explained.  Mauch was the only Mid-Columbia winner on the girls' side, but there were plenty of quality performances.  Natalie Abersfeller of Kennewick had a good feeling about her chances in the 200 meters when she ran her prelim. That feeling translated into a fourth-place finish and a sense of satisfaction about her day.  The Lions also got a seventh-place finish in the 4x200 relay and a fourth in the 4x400 in which Abersfeller ran a 58-second anchor lap to win their heat. Their time of 4:08.96 shaved more than nine seconds off their previous season-best.  In addition, Anya Sergeeva finished seventh in the triple jump (35-6.5), Amy Danielson took eighth in the discus (122-11) and Kristen Andre set a personal record in the long jump with a leap of 17-3.75, finishing sixth.  Richland sophomore Kayla McKeirnan capped a busy day with a fifth-place finish in the 200 (26.49 after going 25.82 in prelims). She earlier had an eighth in the long jump (17-1.75) and a seventh in the 100 (12.64).  She was taking part in her first bit of action since injuring her ankle two weeks earlier. With her ankle taped, she got back into the swing of things.  "I'm a little sore, but overall I think I did pretty well," McKeirnan said. "The weather today reminded me a lot of state last year."  McKiernan was joined by teammates Suzie Strickler (sixth, 800, 2:22.86) and Megan Weitz (seventh, discus, 123-6), while Richland's 4x400 placed sixth in 4:09.19.

Annie Hess put tiny Bickleton on the map again with a second-place finish in the discus, which she said she was happy with. Her 138-8 throw on her final attempt was a personal best by almost a foot and made her the state leader, regardless of classification.    "I just try not to let things bother me and do what I can do," Hess said.  Connell got strong showings by sophomore Cydney Knight, who was fifth in the 3,200 in a personal best 11:20.03 -- eighth-best on the area's all-time list -- and junior Christianne Casper, eighth in the 800 in 2:23.44.  DeSales' Andrea Wujek grabbed a fourth-place finish in the 100 hurdles (14.94) and a third in the 300 hurdles (45.78) despite feeling like a fish out of water.  "The atmosphere of the competition here is so different from anything else," said Wujek, who is considering either the University of Portland or Marquette for college choices after graduation. "To be able to get under 15 (seconds) in my last two runs was nice. I'm glad I was able to be a part of this as a senior."  Also placing in the 300 hurdles was Kamiakin senior Jocelyn Bement (eighth, 46.66). Prosser sophomore Hilary Moore was fourth in the pole vault, clearing 10-3.


There's no place like home
By Rene Ferran

So, Kyle Schauble, you've just been named Outstanding Male Athlete at Saturday's 45th annual Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium. What are you doing next? "I'm going to bed," said the Kamiakin senior. "I can't walk right now."  Schauble had a full day - winning the 110- (14.75 seconds) and 300-meter (38.64) hurdles, taking second in the long jump (22 feet, 5 inches) and leading off the Braves' victorious 4x400 (3:28.03) as Kamiakin won the team title for the first time.  "I figured (Wenatchee's Tom) Ballinger got it last year, so why not another hurdler," said Schauble, who will sign a letter of intent with Washington State this week.

All the major awards stayed in the Tri-Cities this year. Richland junior Kayla McKeirnan was named Outstanding Female Athlete after winning the 200 (25.40) and 400 (57.28), leading the Bombers to their first team title since 1993. McKeirnan said she used her failing to make the long jump finals as motivation in her later races. "Definitely," said McKeirnan, who became the first Bomber since Elaine Martin in 1981 to capture the award. "Ever since I've started high school, the long jump has been a struggle. But I'd placed in it here both years. "This is a surprise. There were some outstanding athletes here."  That included a pair of distance stars, Mount Spokane senior Megan O'Reilly and Eastlake senior Jessica Pixler, who set the only meet records on a day that was quite pleasant save for a 15-minute lightning delay mid-meet.  Before the delay, O'Reilly and Pixler squared off in a loaded 1,600 race.  Pixler set a blistering early pace, which didn't surprise O'Reilly one bit. "It never fails. She's a gutsy racer, and she always goes out hard," she said.  Still, it took O'Reilly a little time to respond to Pixler's gambit. It wasn't until 600 to go that she caught Pixler, but once she got around her to the outside, O'Reilly steadily pulled away to win in a rout, crossing in a meet-record 4 minutes, 47.98 seconds. Pixler also broke the old record, finishing second in 4:56.42, then came back to win the 800 in come-from-behind fashion in a meet-record and state-leading time of 2:12.64.

In all, there were nine champions from the Mid-Columbia, including Schauble's three wins and McKeirnan's pair. Othello sophomore Courtney Kirkwood confirmed her status as the state's best female javelin thrower, posting four throws longer than 140 feet, including her winning mark of 148-2 that was almost 18 feet farther than her nearest rival. Kamiakin, bolstered by the return of senior Michaela Haggett from a stress fracture in her left foot, won both the girls 4x100 and 4x200.  Richland senior Mark Presby won the boys javelin, moving up from ninth in the prelims to win with a throw of 179-7. Southridge senior Stephan Marshall won the triple jump with a best of 46-23/4, and Prosser junior Nectaly Barbosa narrowly missed out on a meet record in winning the 800 in a season-best 1:50.98. Bonners Ferry, Idaho, junior Kaitie Poston successfully defended her titles in the shot put and discus with almost the identical marks of a year ago - 42-3 in the shot this year, down from 42-6, and 143-0 in the discus to 144-21/2 in '05. Renton senior Korey Morris, a University of Arizona signee, duplicated Poston's feat by sweeping the boys shot (61-7) and discus (175-6). Also winning two individual events was Evergreen (Vancouver) junior Ryan Hamilton, who captured the 100 (10.96) and 200 (22.49) and also anchored the Plainsmen's victorious 4x100 relay (43.15). "This is the first competition I've had, really," Hamilton said. "It's really good. I got some decent times."

Richland's McKeirnan nabs 2 titles
By Jack Millikin

There's a right way and a wrong way to bounce back from a defeat, and Kayla McKeirnan did it right Saturday at the Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium. McKeirnan, one of the favorites in the long jump, and 200- and 400-meter races, began her day with a 20th place finish in the long jump after her 15-foot, 8-inch effort fell well below her personal best of 17-31/2. But by the end of the day, the Richland senior had a pair of individual titles in the 200 and 400 and was named the girls outstanding athlete of the meet, which featured record-breaking performances by Megan O'Reilly of Mt. Spokane in the 1,600 and Jessica Pixler of Eastlake in the 800. "I wasn't expecting to win the 200 at all," said McKeirnan, who posted times of 25.40 seconds in the 200 and a personal best of 57.28 in the 400. "It was a good strong group, and I knew it would be competitive." McKeirnan, who also led the Bombers girls to the team championship, said she's made some changes to her long jump technique over the last few weeks. That may have accounted for the poor marks, but she hopes to iron out the kinks come postseason. However, the relative newcomer to the 400 now has to be considered among the favorites at Star Track in Pasco on May 26-27. "My coaches tell me I go out way too fast," she said. "When they tell me to pace it I don't understand. I just go. When I hit the last 100, I tell myself, 'It's just 100 yards. Give it all that you have.'"

Kaitie Poston of Bonners Ferry (Idaho) was the day's only other double winner, topping the field in both the discus (143-0) and shot put (42-31/2). "I get nervous at first, but then my coach tells me I can only beat myself," said Poston, who beat her nearest competitor by over 11/2 feet in the shot and over 12 feet in the disc despite falling well short of her personal bests. "Today was a good day." O'Reilly, who dusted the field at the 4A cross country championships, got the benefit of a fast start by Eastlake's Jessica Pixler and finished in 4:47.98 to break the record of 4:57.00 set my Seattle Prep's Megan Johnson in 2000. "I really wanted the record, and I was confident I could get it," O'Reilly said. Pixler, who also snapped the existing record in the 1,600 with a 4:56.42, but finished second to O'Reilly, later set a new meet record in the 800 with a 2:12.64, breaking the record held by Everett's Cori Moore at 2:14.42.

Other Mid-Columbia standouts included Courtney Kirkwood of Othello, who dominated the field in the girls javelin witha mark of 148-2, beating runner-up Becca Lee of Connell at 130-4. Kirkwood also added an eighth-place finish in the 100 hurdles at 16.50. "I was hoping for a majority of throws over 140," said Kirkwood, who tossed three of her six throws over the 140 mark. Her personal best of 154-7, set just three weeks ago, is just"I was hoping for the (state) record, but then it rained and I lost all the warmth I had and it was hard to get warm again." Lee, who still is nursing a broken pinky on her throwing hand from the basketball season, enjoyed sharing the top two spots with her 2A nemesis. Three other Mid-Columbians rounded out the javelin finalists, including Amanda Welch of Pasco (third at 124-3), Pam Passmore of Lacrosse-Washtucna (fourth at 122-0) and Myriah Hernandez of Moses Lake (seventh at 120-2). "Courtney and I have been rivals ever since last year," said Lee, who also faced Kirkwood on the basketball court and soccer field this season. "I like that a couple of 2A girls went 1-2."

The Kamiakin 4x100 (49.84) and 4x200 (1:45.03) relay squad earned a pair of firsts with near-perfect handoffs and four strong legs from Michaela Haggett, Olivia Johnston, Brittany Sparks and Kendyl Pele, running together for just the second time all season after Haggett returned from an early-season stress fracture. "Adding Michaela made a world of difference," said Sparks, who also took sixth in the long jump at 16-2, sandwiched by Pasco's Ashley Henry (16-3) and Hanford's Kelly Hostetler (16-1 1/2). Pele topped her day with a fourth-place finish in the 100 final with a 12.92 after blistering the prelims with a 12.66. "I was just happy to get in the finals. I've never been to the Pasco Invite before," Pele said. "In the relays we were close to perfect." Caroline Hedel of Richland had a strong day in the hurdles, finishing sixth in the 100 highs (15.91) and second in the 300 lows (45.96). Allison Walker, an Othello freshman, took third in the high jump at 5-3.

Mid-Columbia boys capture 6 titles
By Rene Ferran

Mark Presby had resigned himself to the fact that he wasn't going to place at Saturday's 45th annual Pasco Invite. The Richland senior figured his throw of 168 feet, 6 inches on his final prelim attempt would never make the finals in the boys javelin. Not with him sitting in sixth, with the top six throwers still to go in the final flight. Lo and behold, three throwers bombed out, allowing Presby to sneak into finals in ninth. And on his second throw in the finals, Presby uncorked a throw of 179-7 to move all the way into the lead, and he survived another 17 throws to capture the title at Edgar Brown Stadium. "I'm definitely surprised," Presby said. "I just figured I had to clear my head. I got another chance, and I had to take advantage of that." Presby earlier this week threw a personal-best 180-10 at a Big Nine dual meet. "Things have just clicked," he said. "This is the time of season when things come together."

That also was in the back of Stephan Marshall's mind as the Southridge senior competed in the triple jump. The event started an hour late thanks to a weather delay and an extra-long long jump competition, but Marshall waited it out and went 46-2 3/4 on his third attempt in prelims to win the title. "It wasn't actually that hard," Marshall said. "I waited until the fifth flight, then started my warmups." Prosser junior Nectaly Barbosa had a breakout performance in winning the 800 meters. Barbosa, who ran a 1:50.79 last year as a sophomore, had only run a 1:54.44 this year coming into the Invite, and he was looking to run a fast time. Despite a sore back that he attributed to sleeping wrong the night before, Barbosa blistered the track to win in 1 minute, 50.98 seconds - less than two-tenths off the meet record and easily a state-leading mark. "My plan was to go out in 52, 53 seconds, but when I got here my back was pulled real bad," he said. "The weather shouldn't really matter. But with my back, it was kind of a matter of 'Am I going to do it, am I not?' " Barbosa's next trick is to go for a fast time in the 1,600 - he is the defending 3A state champion at both distances - before taking a run at the all-time state record of 1:49.41 at a dual meet against Ellensburg in early May.

Kamiakin senior Kyle Schauble also appears in line to challenge a pair of state records after winning the 110 and 300 hurdles, taking second in the long jump and leading off the Braves' victorious 4x400 relay. Schauble became Kamiakin's first Outstanding Male Athlete and led the Braves to their first Invite team title. He posted a state-leading 14.46 in the 110 prelims before coming back to win the final in 14.75. Later, he won the 300 hurdles in 38.64, just holding off Walla Walla senior Adam Hair (38.81). Schauble's time in the 300 was a half-second slower than his state-best, which he attributed to a long day. "I felt it over that last hurdle," he said. "I felt really good before the race, and when I passed JJ (Jackson of Sumner) at the second hurdle, I was excited. "But that last hurdle, my legs started giving out. I heard Adam coming, and that kind of pushed me a bit."

Another area runner who had a long day was Moses Lake junior Aaron Wafer, but like Schauble, it was a satisfying one. Wafer placed in all four of his events, taking second in the 200 (22.71), fourth in the 100 (11.34) and long jump (22-2 1/4) and sixth in the 400 (51.01). "I had started thinking about it too much," said Wafer, who qualified for state in all three sprints last year but had a slow start to the '06 season. "Now I'm just running instead of worrying about who's watching me, what they're saying."

Four area high jumpers earned hardware - Hanford junior Keefe Brockman tied for second, clearing 6-4; Connell junior Jarin Price was fourth at 6-2; and sophomores Greg Stapleton of Kamiakin and Cody McCargar of Richland tied for sixth at 6-0. Other area placers were Walla Walla junior Andrew Battenburg in the 200 (seventh, 23.21); Richland junior Tyler Noland in the 1,600 (fifth, 4:26.33); Kiona-Benton senior Holden Leavitt (seventh, 15.56) and Richland junior Isaac Butts (eighth, 15.64) in the 110 hurdles; Wa-Hi's 4x100 (fourth, 43.47) and 4x200 (second, 3:28.34), senior Kent Smith in the triple jump (seventh, 43-4 1/4) and junior Aaron Mettler in the javelin (seventh, 172-2); and Richland senior Mike Demiter in the shot put (fifth, 53-3).


Barbosa sets record in 1,600

By Rene Ferran, Herald staff writer

Nectaly Barbosa came to Saturday's 46th annual Pasco Invitational with modest goals. The Prosser senior wanted to post a good time in the 1,600 meters. He came away with the meet record by more than 3 1/2 seconds, his time of 4 minutes, 8.86 seconds a Mid-Columbia record by more than a second and good for 20th on the all-time state list. He wanted to see just how much stamina he had stored up. He came back to run a 1:52.22 in his specialty, the 800, just getting nipped at the wire by Nathan Hale senior Abdi Hassan, who ran a four-second personal-best to win in 1:51.90.

Barbosa also ran a 49-second anchor leg of Prosser's 4x400, helping the Mustangs to a fourth-place finish. It came as little surprise then when Barbosa was named the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete. As an added bonus, Prosser won the team title with 47 points, one more than Evergreen (Vancouver) "Dude, it's a good day," Barbosa said, a huge smile on his face. "For our team, this has never happened before. We're all just ecstatic. It's a great experience for us."

Barbosa was one of three Mid-Columbians to leave Edgar Brown Stadium a champion Saturday. Hanford sophomore Taymussa Miller won the girls high jump, and Othello junior Courtney Kirkwood repeated in the girls javelin. Evergreen's girls won the team title with 50 points, seven better than Mead and eight ahead of last year's champion, Richland. Fife senior Angela Jensen, who swept the hurdles races and took fifth in the 100, was named Outstanding Female Athlete. "Coming here the last couple of years has definitely got me comfortable with this place," Jensen said. "I like it here. It gets the adrenaline going."

Barbosa got the fans' adrenaline going early in the meet with his solo effort in the 1,600, an event he initially didn't enter. It wasn't until midweek that he decided to double, in part because his good friend, Isak Bergman of Ellensburg, was in the 1,600 and not the 800.  Barbosa shot to the front with the opening gun and pushed the pace throughout. He finished the first lap in 63 seconds, went through the halfway point at 2:05 and poured it on with a 60-second final lap."That's what I set out to do," Barbosa said. "Isak said it was a little risky to do, but I didn't care. Sometimes that's when you run the best, when you have nothing to lose."  But Barbosa did lose just enough off his kick in the 800 and was unable to hold off Hassan down the final straightaway. Hassan, the defending 3A state 1,600 champion, entered the 800 just to get some speed training and wasn't expecting to challenge Barbosa."He's the best in the nation, but he had run that 4:08, so I knew he had to be tired," Hassan said. "I knew he wouldn't go all out, and that the winning time wouldn't be 1:48, 1:49. I knew it would be around 1:52, and I was capable of running that."Barbosa wasn't too upset about the loss. "I've grown a lot," he said. "Last year, I probably would have been mad at myself. But today was just a training session, both mentally and physically. It was a good race. I'm happy about today. This is just another step for where I want to go."

Bergman, meanwhile, came back from his second-place 4:12.65 in the 1,600 to rout the field in the 400, winning in a personal-best 48.91. He also was not planning to double but told his coach Monday he wanted to try it. "I surprised myself," Bergman said. "I couldn't believe I went so fast in the 400 today. This is really exciting." The only double-winner on the boys' side Saturday was Evergreen (Vancouver) senior Ryan Hamilton, who repeated his Invite double of a year ago in the 100 (a state-leading 10.84) and 200 (22.54). For good measure, he anchored the Plainsmen's winning 4x100 relay. Still, Hamilton was disappointed with his times, especially in the 200. "That's pretty mediocre for me," he said. "This just shows me what I need to work on from here on out."

Jensen was the only double-winner in the girls meet, winning the 100 hurdles in 14.60 and the 300s in 44.73. After her 100 hurdles win, she had about five minutes rest before returning for the 100 final, in which she finished fifth to Wilson's Chanel James. "At the smaller meets we do, I'm in a bunch of events like that," Jensen said. "That keeps me in shape so I can have days like this." Evergreen's Candace Missouri played the biggest role in her team's victory, winning the long jump with a leap of 18 feet, 3 inches, finishing second in the triple jump (36-11), third in the 100 (12.63) and running on the victorious 4x100 (48.93). "I was trying to stay warm so I didn't hurt anything," said Missouri, who posted a career-best in the long jump just before the 100 final. James traveled to Pasco by herself while the rest of the Wilson team competed at the Tacoma Invitational. "There's more competition here," said James, who repeated as Invite champ in the 100 (12.50) and took second in the long jump (17-9). "It prepares you better for state." Mount Spokane's Jordan Roskelly won the pole vault on fewer misses over Alexa Huestis of W.F. West (Chehalis). Both cleared 12-0 to tie the meet record.

A happy ending for Richland jumper

Normally, a fourth-place finish at the Pasco Invitational would be enough to bring a smile to an athlete's face.  But considering the day that Richland junior Lindsay Roberts had, it made everything she endured Saturday feel almost worth it. Roberts was involved in a one-car accident while driving to Edgar Brown Stadium to prepare for the triple jump competition. While she wasn't injured, her 1995 Jeep Cherokee was totaled after she skidded out of control while accelerating onto Highway 240 eastbound from the Columbia Park Trail interchange. "I started sliding to the right, then I spun and hit the concrete median head on," said Roberts, who was ticketed for the accident.  "I was so shook up.  My whole right side was tingling." She arrived at Edgar Brown an hour later, and her coaches and teammates were telling her she didn't have to jump. "But I love to compete, and this is a big track meet for me," Roberts said. She taped up her sore knee, which two days earlier had hurt so bad from tendinitis at a CBL meet in Yakima that she quit after one jump. Then she took her three preliminary jumps and got only one legal mark, a jump of 34 feet, 41/2 inches that barely got her into the finals. She scratched again on her first attempt in the finals, then as the rain started falling harder and the temperature dipped, she launched her fifth attempt. "I could just feel it," she said. "On my other jumps, I felt I was looking down. I wasn't tall. That one felt so good, I had a smile on my face as soon as I landed. I was just hoping I didn't scratch." Nope. She popped a jump of 35-6.5, a personal best that propelled her into third place in the competition behind eventual winner Jessica Yates of Snohomish and runner-up Candace Missouri of Evergreen (Vancouver) That she was passed by Columbia River's Amanda Alvarez in the final round of jumps didn't matter. "I was just going out there, figuring to just get it done," Roberts said. "Then I did this well. I guess good things can happen."

Roberts' showing put the icing on Richland's third-place finish in the girls team standings. Senior Kayla McKeirnan didn't repeat as the meet's Outstanding Female Athlete, but she continued to work her way out of an early-season slump with a solid showing -- a pair of seconds in the 200 (25.85 seconds) and 400 (59.12), a fourth in the long jump (16-93/4) and anchoring the Bombers' third-place 4x100 relay (49.53). "I took a month off after basketball season, and I came back not in shape at all," McKeirnan said. "It's been tough getting back, but slowly I'm getting there. Today was a good starting point from here on out."

The area did produce a pair of girls champions, including a repeat winner -- Othello junior Courtney Kirkwood in the javelin, who went 144-11 on her final throw after already having the title clinched. "It's a good feeling to win, but I wanted a better mark," said Kirkwood, who was seven feet off her season best. "I felt confident with how I'd been throwing in practice and in the last couple of meets. I felt I'd be able to pull one off today." Hanford sophomore Taymussa Miller won the high jump over Melissa Howard of Evergreen on fewer misses after both cleared 5-3 on their second attempt. Howard was ahead of Miller in the rotation of five jumpers left at that height, so Miller felt no pressure when she saw Howard make 5-3. "The whole time, I wasn't sure how many girls were left, and 5-3 is a normal jump for me," said Miller, whose career-best is 5-4 earlier this year. "I would have been mad if I didn't make it."

Other area placers were Richland's Galia Deitz (fourth, 100H) and Caroline Hedel (fourth, 300H); Kiona-Benton's Whitney Leavitt (sixth, 100; eighth, 200); Southridge's Christina Lee (sixth, 400) and its 4x400 (seventh); Hanford's Megan Dart (seventh, 800); Walla Walla's Ashlee Wall (fourth, 3,200) and Shanie Bushman (tie fifth, pole vault); Connell's Coriann Wood (fifth, shot; sixth, discus) and Rebecca Lee (fifth, javelin); Othello's Ashley Walker (tie sixth, high jump); and Prosser's Hilary Moore (tie eighth, pole vault).


A day of ups and downs for area athletes at Pasco Invite

By Rene Ferran, Herald staff writer

How many athletes sized up their day at the 47th annual Pasco Invitational on Saturday came down to the expectations game.

Some champions came away disappointed because their marks weren't up to snuff.

Others may not have stood atop the awards podium, but it didn't matter. Just taking home a plaque, a medal or a ribbon was accomplishment enough.

That was the case for Kamiakin junior Elise Jepsen. A year ago, she won the 3A state title at Edgar Brown Stadium in the high jump.

On Saturday, she only finished fifth, but in the process she jumped a career-best 5 feet, 4 inches. A few hours later, she went a career-best 36-6 to place second in the triple jump, and the smile she wore said it all.

"I hadn't PR'd in like two years in any of my events, so it's just a happy feeling to be able to get over that mental wall," Jepsen said. "The high jump bar didn't look that high. I was over it even before I jumped it. Today was just fun."

Hanford junior Taymussa Miller could relate. She won the Invite high jump last year, going only 5-3. This year, she placed third, but by clearing a school-record 5-6.

"I really like winning, but I got my school record and I'm only a junior, so I hope I just keep getting better," she said.

The Mid-Columbia produced five winners and a pair of athletes of the meet Saturday.

Kiona-Benton junior Whitney Leavitt won Outstanding Female Athlete honors by blitzing a strong 100-meter field to win in 12.20 seconds -- tying for seventh on the Mid-Columbia's all-time list.

"I was real loose before the race," Leavitt said. "My coach told me to just have fun, because if you worry too much, you're not going to do well. My start was much better than usual. It was just a great race."

Kamiakin senior Olivia Johnston avenged an earlier loss this season to Richland's Galia Deitz, holding her and Tekoa-Oakesdale/Rosalia's Ashley Stabl off to win the 300 hurdles in a season-best 45.37.

"I usually start the season slow, and this is the time of year I pick things up," said Johnston, who has signed with Eastern Washington. "This is the best competition here. You've got to be on your A-game."

Deitz, bound for Brown University in the fall, finished third in the 300 hurdles and second in the highs (15.08) to Bellarmine's Shaquana Logan.

"The 300 is one of my favorite races, but we have a love-hate relationship, and today it wasn't as much love," Deitz said. "But I was pretty happy with my 100s. I got a personal-best into a headwind."

Othello senior Courtney Kirkwood, a WSU signee, won the javelin with a throw of 143-11, almost 17 feet behind her area record of a year ago.

"It's been frustrating," she said of her year to date. "I've been trying to force things too much. I need to relax and let it come naturally, like it had in the past."

Richland junior Jessica Christian, who cleared 12-1 in the pole vault two weeks ago, went 11-9 to win the Invite title and had a good run at 12-2 on her second attempt.

"The Walla Walla coach said I just brushed the bar off with my shirt," Christian said. "Then I just hurried on that last one. But I'm excited with how I did. The heights will come along."

Prosser's 4x100 relay team was the only boys champion, winning in a state-best 42.91 seconds. It's the same quartet that won the 2A state title a year ago -- Aaron Galvan, Cody Bruns, Drake Washington and the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete, Cade Wandling -- but because of basketball season and vacations, it was only the second time they'd run together this year.

"Our handoffs were pretty smooth, but if we want to get real picky, we can work on some stuff," Galvan said. "But now, we've got to keep this up and finish strong like we did last year."

Kamiakin senior Greg Stapleton took second in the high jump by clearing 6-6, a personal-best by two inches.

"I'd gotten close to it a couple times before, so I'm excited," he said. "My first two tries (at 6-6) today, I was thinking too much about it. The third one, I felt good and I just got it over with and made it."

Southridge junior Andrew Gonzales was hoping for a personal-best in the 3,200, but in the windy conditions, it turned into a tactical race. He "settled" for a third-place finish in 9:26.96, two seconds slower than his PR.

"With Joey (Bywater) being in there, I expected the pace to be a little faster," Gonzales said. "But I placed third, and my goal was top-five, so I'm happy with that."

Moses Lake senior Tad Harman also was hoping to better his personal (and perhaps even school) record in the shot put, but he still was pleased by going a season- and area-best 53-11/4 on his final throw to take second.

"I figured I had nothing to lose, and I finally got on my plant foot and didn't worry about scratching," he said.

Prosser's Wandling, Ki-Be's Leavitt highlight Pasco Invite

Cade Wandling exited the Edgar Brown Stadium track Saturday afternoon following his final race, a disgusted look on his face.

"I've been better," the Prosser senior said after finishing second in the 200 meters to Benson's Nycole Griffin at the 47th annual Pasco Invitational.

A couple hours later, Wandling truly was feeling much better about his day after he was selected the meet's Outstanding Male Athlete in leading the Mustangs to a tie for second in the team standings.

"This is really an honor, just because of all the great athletes that were here," said Wandling, who anchored Prosser's victorious 4x100 relay team -- the lone Mid-Columbia boys titlists -- and also took second in the 100. "It's nice to be chosen, but I still need to do some work."

Kiona-Benton junior Whitney Leavitt had long since exited Edgar Brown by the time it was announced she was selected the Outstanding Female Athlete of the meet for her win in the 100 and close second in the 200.

It was sweet redemption for Leavitt, who a year ago face-planted near the finish of the 200.

"I came into the meet this year, and it didn't feel so big like it did when I was a freshman," Leavitt said. "I feel like I belong."

Central Valley won its first-ever boys title with 41 points, edging Jesuit of Portland and 2007 champion Prosser by six points.

Bellarmine Prep, led by a trio of champions, won the girls title with 65 points, with Richland second with 57.5.

"We got points everywhere: running and in the field," said junior Martha Sanford, who aided the Bombers' cause with a fifth in the 300 hurdles and running on the 4x100 and 4x400 relays. "We have a good future ahead of us ... maybe even a shot at state."

The 4A/3A state meet, to be run at this same facility in five weeks' time, was on the back of many athletes' minds as they braved the chilly, windy conditions -- which were still better than on the westside, where the Eason Invite in Snohomish was snowed out.

"This is pretty much a dress rehearsal for state. It's an opportunity to prove to yourself that you're a contender," said Redmond's Sarah Lord, who repeated as Invite 3,200 champion in the girls, holding off Jesuit's Adrienne McGuirk to win in 10:53.52.

Two-time 4A boys state 3,200 champion Joey Bywater of Lake Stevens finally added an Invite title to his collection, blowing past Mead's Kelly Lynch on the final straightaway to win in 9:23.07.

It was Bywater's first 3,200 this season, and he pronounced it a good kickoff to what he hopes will be a three-peat.

"This is a good mark to start working off," he said. "This track has been great to me."

Lord was one of three repeat champions on the day. Pullman's Anna Albrecht won a second girls shot put title with a throw of 42 feet, 81/2 inches, while Othello's Courtney Kirkwood captured the girls javelin in 143-11.

"I've been throwing well in practice, and I was kind of hoping for better marks today," said Kirkwood, the Mid-Columbia record-holder in the event (160-11). "I guess it just wasn't meant to be."

Two other area athletes won titles Saturday -- Kamiakin senior Olivia Johnston staved off a pair of rivals to win the girls 300 hurdles in 45.37, and Richland junior Jessica Christian won the girls pole vault by clearing 11-9.

A pair of distance runners coming off big performances at last week's Arcadia (Calif.) Invitational posted victories.

Mount Rainier's Ryan Prentice, the reigning 3A state cross country champion, followed up a 14:41 in the 5,000 at Arcadia -- No. 5 all-time in the state -- by kicking past Lake City's John Coyle to win the 1,600 in 4:17.66.

"After last week, this just felt like nothing," Prentice said.

Bellarmine's Nicole Cochran, who broke 5 minutes in the mile last week, held off Bellingham's Becca Friday to win the 800 in 2:14.41.


Big marks highlight Pasco Invite

By Rene Ferran, Herald staff writer

The sun finally shined upon the track world Saturday just in time for the 48th annual Pasco Invitational at Edgar Brown Stadium.

And the athletes counted their blessings and took advantage of the perfect conditions to post three meet records and 14 state-best marks.

"Definitely, today, with the weather, I was just trying to stay energized and not wear myself out too much," said Emerald Ridge junior Kayla Stueckle, who clearly accomplished her goal with three wins en route to earning Outstanding Female Athlete honors.

She won the 100- and 300-meter hurdles -- the latter in a personal-best and state-leading 43.41 seconds -- and the long jump, and also took fourth in the 100.

"I pretty much accomplished what I wanted to today," she said.

Hazen senior Andrey Levkiv was named Outstanding Male Athlete after winning the shot put and discus, but he wasn't around to celebrate his feat.

Moments after Levkiv took the lead in the discus with a throw of 161 feet, 5 inches, he suffered a seizure awaiting his next turn sitting on a bench beside the ring.

Meet officials and paramedics rushed to treat Levkiv, who recovered after several minutes and stood as if to take his next throw, only to be sent to the hospital by ambulance as a precaution.

Jesuit won the girls title, making it four out of the last eight for Portland-area schools, edging Southridge by 4 1/2 points on the strength of the Crusaders' second-place finish in the 4x400.

The Suns won their speciality, the 4x100, in a season-best time of 48.88, and had nine individuals finish on the podium.

"It was a total team effort," said junior Chelsea Bourque, who took third in the 100 hurdles (15.55) and also ran a leg on the 4x100 and the eighth-place 4x400.

Kentwood won the boys title for the first time since 1991 and the combined team title thanks to the girls' fourth-place finish.

Southridge's 4x100 victory was one of five by Mid-Columbia athletes -- all in the girls meet.

Kiona-Benton senior Whitney Leavitt repeated in the 100 (12.28), and classmate Katharine Lotze jumped a career-best 36-7 to win the triple jump. Hanford senior Taymussa Miller won the high jump for the second time in three years, clearing 5-5, and Prosser senior Ana Zapien won the discus (133-10).

Richland senior Jessica Christian didn't repat as pole vault champion -- she lost out to Mead's Tasha Clark on misses -- but did tie the meet record by clearing 12 feet on her third attempt.

Kentlake senior Zach Smith also tied the meet record in the boys long jump, winning in 24-1 1/2, and North Central's distance medley kicked off the day by breaking the meet record by 3 seconds, winning in 10:18.18.

Ki-Be girls snare pair of wins

PASCO -- Katharine Lotze joked after winning the triple jump at Saturday's 48th annual Pasco Invitational about how two girls from little ol' 1A Kiona-Benton won titles against the big-school girls.

"I really like these big invites," she said. "It's a lot more interesting to have some real good competition."

The senior had just broken her own school record by a foot, winning with a jump of 36 feet, 7 inches to edge out defending champion Kathleen Mulligan of Mount Rainier by a half-inch.

She could afford, therefore, to crack wise about her usual competition -- "I know all their names and faces," she said of her SCAC rivals -- and about her struggles at last year's Invite.

"I scratched my first two jumps, then on my third one, I walked back through the pit," she recalled with a smile. "I really messed up here, and I'm happy to redeem myself. Today was supposed to be my day."

Lotze's classmate, Whitney Leavitt, repeated as 100-meter champion, following up her 12.25-second run in the prelims with a 12.28 in the finals.

"Once the prelims were out of the way, my nerves calm down a bit and I can focus more clearly," said Leavitt, who also took third in the 200 in 25.43. "This was such a relief. I was afraid I'd do worse today, and now that I've won, I feel so much better."

Together, the duo combined for 27 points -- almost enough to earn the Bears a team trophy.

Southridge did take home some team hardware, finishing second with 52 points to Jesuit's winning 56 1/2 total. The Suns did it with their usual suspects -- the 4x100 blazing to victory in 48.88, senior Kasey McNeill (fifth in the 100 and long jump) and junior Chelsea Bourque (third in the 100 hurdles) -- and with some surprises as well.

Senior Brittany Hill jumped a personal-best 17-5 1/4 to take second in the long jump, while junior Emma Murillo popped a 7-foot PR to take third in the javelin (127-6).

"When they first said my mark, I thought they said 16 feet," Hill said. "Then when I heard it again, my heart dropped. It was amazing to know that I had finally done it."

McNeill received the baton from Andrea Smith almost dead even with Jesuit's anchor leg, but with 50 meters to go she put on a burst that left the field in her wake.

"I don't know where it came from," McNeill said. "I was just mad because I'd been getting fifth in everything, and I thought I'd better get us on that first-place podium."

Hanford senior Taymussa Miller already knew what that first-place spot felt like, having won the high jump two years ago. After placing third last season -- albeit with a career-best jump of 5-6 -- she came back to win this year, clearing 5-5 on her second try.

"This is one of my favorite places to jump," said Miller, who won the 3A state title a year ago at the same facility. "I went against that Pendleton girl (Kate Bostwick) before, and she beat me that day, so that was in the back of my mind, too."

Prosser senior Ana Zapien threw a season-best 133-10 on her second throw in the finals to win the discus a year after placing third here.

"I really wanted to win today, but more than anything, if I didn't, if I'd gone 134 I'd have been OK," she said.

Mid-Columbia boys went winless for the first time since 2001. The top area finisher was Hanford senior Kyle Wagar, who took the lead in the javelin on his final throw at 177-1, only to watch Lynnwood's Dylan Burnett-Lewis top him with a 179-11 on his final throw.

"I knew I could be up there with the top throwers," Wagar said. "I should have thrown better today, but second place works."


Avery leads 4 Mid-Columbians to Pasco Invite wins

By Rene Ferran, Herald staff writer

PASCO -- Marques Avery shut his mind Saturday afternoon to any pressure of performing well at his hometown track meet.

"The Pasco Invite is always a fun day for me," the Bulldogs senior said. "Last year, I was stressing about how I've got to do something big here. This year, I felt more relaxed about it. There was no downside. I'm just out here competing."

And winning. That always eases the pressure.

Avery became the first Bulldog to win a title at the Pasco Invitational in five years, powering past a loaded 100-meter field to win in 10.95 seconds at Edgar Brown Stadium.

"Oh yeah, this is great, especially on my home track," said Avery, who'll play football at West Point next fall. "This is the Pasco Invite, the biggest meet around besides state."

He later added a third in the 200 and anchored a pair of relay teams to the podium -- the 4x100 took second and the 4x400 eighth -- as the Bulldogs just missed trophying as a team, finishing fifth by one point.

Avery was one of four Mid-Columbia athletes to take home titles from the 49th running of the nation's largest one-day track meet.

Walla Walla senior Garrett Gerling moved into fifth on the all-time area list in the 110 hurdles, winning in 14.38, while Southridge junior Andrea Smith won the girls 100 hurdles in a personal-best 15.05 and Othello junior Courtney Kirkwood won the javelin in a personal-best 153-10.

Three meet records were set on a sun-soaked afternoon, including a state record in the boys javelin.

Tahoma (Maple Valley) senior Derek Eager barely had time to get a few warmup throws in after finishing up in the shot put, but that's the way he likes it.

"I don't know why," Eager said. "But whenever I rush into it, I just seem to do my best."

Eager's best sent the javelin flying 229 feet, 5 inches across the infield -- breaking his own state record by almost 11 feet and the meet record (set with the old-style implement) by Pullman's Timm Rosenbach in 1985 by more than 4 feet.

Eager's first throw of 219-8 set the tone. He finished his series with five throws further than 200 feet.

"After hitting that 219, I knew I had a big one in me," Eager said. "I just like throwing here. I've been looking forward to this meet the last couple of weeks. I just knew it would be a good meet for me."

Eager later added the discus title with a throw of 177-4 and was named Outstanding Male Athlete of the meet.

The other meet records were set by a pair of Mead girls -- junior Baylee Mires in the 800 on her way to Oustanding Female Athlete honors, and senior Tasha Clark in the pole vault.

Mires set her sights on the 800 record from the get-go, opening up a big lead by the midway point of the race and finishing in 2:11.98.

"I just really wanted to get the record really bad," said Mires, who earlier won a tight 1,600 race in 5:01.38.

"I ran the 1,600 pretty smart, and then coming back and running a really fast 800 for the beginning of the season, that's all I needed to do down here. Getting my name in the (record) book is a plus."

Clark tied the meet record of 12-0 in winning the pole vault a year ago. This time, she cleared a personal-best 12-3 on her first attempt, then took a good crack at 12-6 on his first try before tiring.

"I wanted to be the only name up there," Clark said of the record. "My first attempt at 12-6 was really good, but the standards were a little off. I'm definitely going to get that this year."

Mead's boys won the team title for the 11th time and first since 2003 despite having only one individual champion -- Jeremy Beck in the high jump.

Kentwood's girls romped to the title thanks in large part to junior Holly DeHart, who won the 100 and 200 and took second in the long jump.

Teammate's injury clouds hurdles title for Southridge's Smith

PASCO -- It should have been the best moment of Andrea Smith's track career.

The Southridge junior had just won the 100-meter hurdles at Saturday's 49th annual Pasco Invitational in a career-best time of 15.05 seconds.

But right behind her, teammate Chelsea Bourque crashed after clipping her toe on the final hurdle. Her head slammed off the Edgar Brown Stadium track as she skittered into Smith's lane.

"It's bittersweet," Smith said. "I don't really feel like I can celebrate when my teammate's hurt. I heard her scream, and when I crossed the finish line, I turned around and started freaking out. I just hope she's OK."

Bourque quickly popped up, spun around and made her way across the finish line, but her day was done as it was concluded she suffered a mild concussion.

Her absence was felt in the 4x100 -- the Suns, a title contender, ended up sixth -- and ultimately the team standings.

Southridge still won a trophy by finishing third with 38 points, but Kentwood's winning total of 56 was within reach if Bourque had been able to continue.

"I was worried about Chelsea all day," said senior La'Quilla Upton, who posted third-place finishes in the 100 (12.61) and triple jump (35-8). "I know she wanted to run (the 4x100), but state is more important than Pasco."

But Pasco can be an important building block in hopes of success at state.

That's what Hermiston senior Mary Barnett took out of her pair of third-place finishes in the shot and discus.

Barnett is in the process of deconstructing her technique in the shot, hoping to get off the plateau she'd hit with her marks.

"My form was so much better than it's ever been," she said. "Before, I was throwing ugly, and it went far, but if I can throw only 41 (feet), that's not good enough.

"This is just the beginning. All that matters is district and state, when I need those big marks."

One thrower who did post a big mark Saturday was Othello junior Christine Kirk-wood, who improved her personal-best by 2 feet in winning the javelin in 153-10.

"I was hoping for the meet record (157-6), but I'm excited about the PR," said Kirkwood, who skipped an AAU basketball tournament in Arizona to throw at the Invite. "This was a good experience for me."

Area throwers went 1-2-3 in the event, with Hermiston's Crystal Schmidt throwing a career-best 136-8 on her final attempt to pass Southridge's Emma Murillo at 130-10.

"This is just my second year throwing the javelin, and I still trying to understand this event a little," Schmidt said.

Murillo, meanwhile, continues her comeback from a dirt bike injury in February in which she separated her right (throwing) shoulder.

She threw left-handed the first month of the season, and the Invite was only her second meet using her dominant hand.

"I haven't been able to do much throwing or lifting, so this definitely boosted my confidence," Murillo said.

Pasco senior Marisa Vander Malle also saw her confidence soar after running a huge distance double -- going 5:02.94 to finish fifth in the 1,600 and 10:52.58 to take third in the 3,200.

Her 1,600 time is No. 4 on the all-time area list, and her 3,200 time is No. 3.

"It's amazing," the Boise State signee said. "This just shows me I have the potential to make it to state in both. That would be an awesome end to my senior year."

Hermiston senior Angelica Rodriguez, an EWU signee, ran a career-best 2:16.81 to finish second in the 800 to Mead junior Baylee Mires' meet-record 2:11.98.

"I loved that she was here," Rodriguez said. "That helped me keep focused."

Walla Walla senior Garrett Gerling was focused on winning the 300 hurdles title coming into the Invite.

He came up four-hundredths of a second short (his time of 38.09 is No. 3 all-time in the area), but he received a nice consolation prize -- a victory in the 110 hurdles in 14.38, fifth-fastest in area history.

"That was a surprise," Gerling said. "The 300s were the one I thought I could win. But I got a really good start, and by the time we got to the middle of the race, I didn't see anybody around me and I thought, 'I might just get this.' "

Pasco senior Marques Avery also used a strong start to propel himself to victory in the 100 in a season-best 10.95.

"I got out good and just kept it going all the way through," said Avery, who was just five-hundredths off his personal best from last year's state meet. "The other guys were pushing me, though. I felt them there."

50th ANNUAL PASCO INVITE-Golden Anniversary

Seattle junior wows Pasco Invite crowd
By Craig Craker, Herald staff writer

Pasco--Maddie Meyers might want to ask the state meet organizers to change their schedule this May.  The Northwest (Seattle) junior ran the 1,600- and 3,200-meter races on the same day for the first time in her life Saturday at the Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium.  After defeating a loaded field in the mile, Meyers turned around and put up a stunning time in the 3,200 meters to bring home two golds.

Meyers wasn't even scheduled to run in the 3,200, but boy is she glad she did after destroying the Pasco Invite record by more than 20 seconds.  "We were talking about entering me, but then we forgot," Meyers said. "So, I was a entered into late and didn't appear in the program."  No one will forget she ran the race, however, after she finished in a blistering 10 minutes, 18.46 seconds, the top time in the nation according to The previous meet record was 10:40.6 set by Roosevelt's Brigid Stirling in 1986.

"Ever since state track last season, I found out I had more speed than I thought," she said. "So, we added a lot more speed to my workouts."  It paid off Saturday as Meyers, North Central's Katie Knight and Shadle Park's Kendra Weitz took turns running in the front to help protect against the wind and allow the others to rest a bit.  In the final two laps, though, it was every girl for herself, and Meyers surged away from the competition, beating Knight by more than 8 seconds.

Earlier in the day, Meyers defeated a strong field in the mile, winning in a time of 4:49.02, just edging Glacier Peak's Amy-Eloise Neale, who finished second in 4:49.74.  "We don't get to race that often," Meyers said, "but she's gotten me a lot of times.  "It's just fun to get out here and see the big schools and race against the big guns."  Northwest is a Class 1A school and only has about 10 girls on its track and field team.  Meyers beat a field that included the defending Class 3A state champ in Neale, the defending Class 4A state champ in Mead's Baylee Mires and Knight, who took second in the 1,600 and 3,200 at the Class 3A meet last season.  Not bad for a runner who had never done the distance double the same day.

Mid-Columbia strong in field events: Richland's Elizabeth Quick was hoping for a top three finish, which would match up with her seed.  Instead, she got a pleasant surprise by bringing home the title in the pole vault.  "I just practiced jumping over 12 (feet) a lot," she said. "I was pretty used to the height and I wasn't scared."  Quick cleared 12-0 to win the title, beating her personal best by six inches and setting a sophomore school record in the process.  "I was kind of nervous because of the wind," she said, "but it all turned out well."  Quick wasn't the only Mid-Columbia athlete to bring home a field event title.

Kennewick's Kaytlyn Coleman held off a strong challenge from Connell's Maci Whitby to win the discus title.  Coleman won with a throw of 128-1, while Whitby was second at 127-5.  Coleman's throw was her best of the season by nearly six feet as well as a personal best.  Also, Hanford's Veronica Bradley was fourth in the triple jump at 35-9, while Chiawana's Shelby Ellsworth was second in the javelin at 135-8.

On the boys side, Chiawana's Daniel Hughes was third in the shot put (54-2.25) and Pasco's Brandon Search was fourth in the high jump (6-2).  Kafentzis leads Mid-Columbia runners: Richland's Travis Kafentzis finished second in the 110-meter hurdles in a time of 15.02 to lead a strong performance for area runners.  Walla Walla's Aaron Nelson was second in the 3,200 in 9:20.4 and anchored the Blue Devils' distance medley squad that took second in 10:24.38.

On the girls side, Kamiakin freshman Ellie Heiden was third in the 400 in 59.33, Richland's Maggie Jones was fourth in the 800 in 2:21.2, Hanford's Erin Hegarty was fourth in the 3,200 in 10:57.79, Walla Walla's 4x400 relay team took third in 4:05.51 and Kamiakin's distance relay squad was fourth in 12:59.28.

Freshman phenom: Wenatchee's Isaiah Brandt-Sims came into Saturday with the best 100-meter time in the state.  Of course, that didn't mean much since he'd never run on a stage as big as the Pasco Invite.
But the freshman sensation didn't disappoint, winning the 100-yard dash in 10.01, edging Kennedy's Darian Brooks, who entered with the second best time in the state.  "I don't really know what I expected," Brandt-Sims said. "I didn't think I'd win, but I knew I'd be in the top five."  Brandt-Sims has reason to be confident, as a freshman putting up times like this is extremely rare.  He also finished second in the 200 meters (22.31) and anchored Wenatchee's third-place 4x100-meter relay team.  "It is exciting that I did as well as I did," he said.  And it will be plenty exciting for fans and teammates alike to see what he can do the next three years.

Someone build a better pole!: In the rarest of all rare feats Saturday, Kamiakin's Arturo Gonzalez and Interlake's Ryuji Kawashima had their pole vault poles break on consecutive attempts.  Another pole broke earlier in the day, though it was just the handle. Gonzalez and Kawashima had the pleasure of planting, starting their rise and then having their sticks snap in half at the middle.  Neither vaulter was hurt, though it did set off a panic as nearly all the vaulters started checking their poles to make sure there were no cracks or chips.

Man of the meet: Kentwood's BJ Arceneaux earned Outstanding Male Athlete, thanks to his record-setting leap in the long jump.  Arceneaux jumped 24-4 1/4 to break the meet record of 24-1 1/2 and set the season's national standard.

And the team titles go to ... : Brandt-Sims wasn't the only Wenatchee male athlete to have a good day, as the Panthers brought home the team title with 55 points. North Central was second with 51 points and Mead was third with 42 points.

On the girls side, Kentwood held off West Valley to win the team title with 57 points. The Rams finished with 56 points and nearly used their winning 4x400 relay team to rally in the standings as well. Portland's Jesuit was third with 52 points.

Othello's Kirkwood sets state javelin record

Christine Kirkwood showed yet again why she is one of the top javelin throwers in the nation.  With a stiff cross-wind wreaking havoc on nearly every other athlete at the 50th Pasco Invite on Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium, Kirkwood let out a mighty roar and launched her implement to distances never seen before in the state of Washington.  The Othello senior not only beat the Pasco Invite record, but also set a Washington high school record with her 166-foot, 9-inch throw.  "I'm excited," she said. "It wasn't ideal weather conditions. When there isn't so much wind, I hope to really get one off."

Kirkwood's throw helped her garner Outstanding Female Athlete of the Meet as well as rewrite the record books.  Skyview's Kara Patterson previously held the Pasco Invite record at 157-6, set in 2003. Patterson now holds the American women's record.  "It hasn't quite sunk in yet," Kirkwood said. "Not many people get to say (they've beaten Patterson)."  For Kirkwood, chasing down Patterson's Pasco Invite record was almost more rewarding than breaking her own state record. Christine's older sister, Courtney, who won three consecutive javelin state titles, never could overcome Patterson at the Pasco meet.  But Christine made sure that the Kirkwood name owns nearly every prominent javelin record in this state.  "It was my goal last year, but I came up short," Kirkwood said. "To finally get it is just another monkey off my back."

Kirkwood broke the Pasco Invite record with a throw of 160-8 on her final throw in the preliminaries.  It was one of the first throws this season that Kirkwood has used a full run-up and throw, after spending her first five meets worrying more about technique.  After breaking the first record, Kirkwood then had nothing to lose and let loose with the state record-breaking 166-footer.  "My coaches told me to just speed up and go for it," Kirkwood said. "I just went for it and hit my positioning, and it took off in the wind."  The 166-9 mark is nearly 4 feet better than the record she set at the state meet last year (162-10). It is the top throw in the nation this season according to  The distance was impressive on a day that saw the boy's winner top out at 179-4 feet.

The throw already has Kirkwood and her coaches looking forward to warmer, calmer conditions later this spring with 170 feet or even the national record of 176-2 in mind.  "It's exciting," Kirkwood said. "When it gets warmer and nicer, it'll be easier to stay loose. We have some things to work on and perfect in practice now."  Kirkwood is traveling to the elite Oregon Relays in Eugene next weekend, when she will square off with seven of the top 13 javelin throwers in the nation.  No one would be surprised if she rewrites the record books yet again.

Kamiakin's Amstrong rallies to win mile

For 1,300 meters Saturday, everything was going wrong for Kamiakin's Anthony Armstrong.  He was trapped in the back of a crowded field and was watching the leaders race away from him.  This was not what he had in mind for the golden mile at the 50th Annual Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium.  "It was the perfect storm of things that could go wrong," he said. "I wanted to go at two laps, but with the wind and being boxed in, it all went bad at once."  All was not lost, though, as Armstrong kicked it into a gear even he didn't know he had and out-leaned White River's Marcus Dickson at the finish line to earn the victory and set a school record in the mile at 4 minutes, 14.96 seconds.  "I've out-kicked people before, but not by that close," Armstrong said. "I was a lot further behind than I thought, but it was the afterburners that saved my life."

Armstrong started his kick with 300 meters to go. With 200 left, he was just thinking about closing in on the lead pack, with 100 left he was just trying to take it step by step and fight through the pain, and then in the final 50 meters -- when he saw how close he was -- he decided he just had to go for it.  With a partisan crowd roaring, Armstrong chewed up the remaining four runners and defeated Dickson in a photo finish by .01 seconds.  "It was a lot of ground to make up, and I didn't think I could do it," Armstrong said. "At the end I didn't really know what I was doing, the crowd just motivated me.  "When I leaned I looked over at him, and I wasn't sure I had it."  But Armstrong did indeed have it, capping an impressive two weeks.

Last weekend, the junior broke Kamiakin's two-mile record with a time of 9:02.23 at the elite Arcadia (Calif.) Invitational and followed that up with his one-mile record Saturday.  "I was more nervous for this race than the Arcadia one," he said. "This was huge. I'm surprised I got another school record today."  Armstrong struggled at the start, despite liking his starting position in the 16-runner race.  "I was trying not to get in the second waterfall," he said, "but I got boxed in, and from there had to go to the back and loop around, which I didn't want.  "I thought it was a lot of ground to make up, and I didn't know if I could win it, but the crowd kind of pushed me."  Armstrong has now accomplished two of the goals he set out to get this season and hopes to keep improving and possibly throw up a very low time and bring home a state title.  "The only thing that's bugging me is the weather," he said. "This was a big accomplishment and I'm happy with my race, but I felt it could've gone different with better weather."


Heiden, Kamiakin girls Pasco Invite champs
By Craig Craker, Tri-City Herald

Ellie Heiden just wanted to lay down and take a nap.  Unfortunately for her, she still had the anchor leg of the 4x400-meter relay to run.  Fortunately for her teammates, Heiden had a day for the ages Saturday.

The Kamiakin sophomore overcame exhaustion to cruise through the anchor on the mile relay and deliver the Braves to the victory at the 51st annual Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium in Pasco.

"I was thinking in the middle of the race that I want to fall down and die right now," she said. "If it was the open 400, I might have just laid down and gone to sleep, but three other girls were counting on me and I couldn't let them down."

Heiden didn't let anyone down on this day, winning the 200 and 400 meters and anchoring the 4x100 and 4x400 relays to titles. She was named the Female Outstanding Athlete for her efforts and helped lead the Braves to the first team title at the Pasco Invite since 1999.

"I'm still in shock," she said of winning four events. "Kamiakin has a really strong team and we all get along. You need to have a few things go right to be good and we have those."

Heiden was joined on the winner's stand by Meagan Beauchene, who was a surprise winner in the 800.

The sophomore blazed past North Central's Katie Knight with 200 meters to go and held off Knight's charge down the stretch, winning in 2:14.22.

"My 1,600 race didn't go how I wanted and I was upset and I was thinking about that and wanted to make up for it," Beauchene said of finishing eighth in her signature race. "I was really worried that last 100 (of Knight chasing her down), but kept thinking about how good it would feel to win.

"It feels great. I was just smiling all the way to the end."

Beauchene also ran the second leg on the 4x400 team, along with Danielle Brandon on the opening leg and Michelle Fletcher on the third leg.

It was the first time since the Class 3A state meet last season that the four had run the mile relay together, and while the time wasn't stellar, a victory certainly is.

"We have our eyes on winning state," Fletcher said. "This meet gives us confidence that we can compete with some really good teams."

The Braves should have confidence considering how things went Saturday, especially for Heiden.

Running the 200 meters for just the second and third time in her life, she pulled out a victory with a time of 25.46.

"When I was getting in the blocks, I was like, 'These girls are gonna kick my trash,' " she said. "It started to get to me mentally, but I just figured if my parents told me I could do the 200 and my coaches told me I could, that I should have confidence."

In the 400, Heiden went against her normal race, only going to the front about halfway through the race, but it didn't matter as she showed off her closing kick to get the win in 56.87.

The biggest win of the day, though, might have been in the 4x100 relay, which has Khadidja Toure, Kyra Brannan and Heiden back from last year's state championship team. Freshman Lindsey Schauble is on the first leg this season, and after the team false started at the Pasco Invite last year, they were out for blood Saturday.

Heiden held off a hard-charging Curtis runner to win in 48.84, thanks to a photo finish.

"At state when I got the baton, I couldn't see anyone," Heiden said. "So (Saturday), my first thought was that she was standing on the side of the track because usually there is no one there.

"The first thing I thought was, 'What if I lose this?' My next thought was just run."

Which she did throughout the day, winning Kamiakin's first Female Outstanding Athlete since Fran Green won it in 1995.

The Braves finished with a whopping 74 points, easily beating Auburn Riverside's 47.

Pasco Invite boys: Big day for Mid-Columbia hurdlers

It was redemption Saturday for a pair of Mid-Columbia hurdlers at the 51st annual Pasco Invite.

Walla Walla's Blake Gerling and Hanford's Joe Collett were both smiling for different reasons after their races Saturday.

Gerling won the 300-meter hurdles race in 38.75 seconds, more than making up for his Pasco Invite experience in 2011.

The Blue Devils senior tripped on the second hurdle last season and tore the posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in the process, ending his track season prematurely.

So, Saturday when he hit the corner for the straightaway and found himself trailing, he decided to do something about it.

"Right on the corner I saw Andrey (Zadneprovkiy) and Collett in front of me," he said. "I wasn't going to let this one slip. I went over the wall, and every muscle was working."

The win also keeps a family tradition of sorts going for Gerling. His older brother, Garrett, won the 110 hurdles in 2010 at the Invite and took second in the 300s.

Blake Gerling took fourth in the 110s, but he was still pleased with his day.

"I was trying to keep up with my older brother," he said. "I wanted a 38.5, but whatever comes is good. It was a good day."

Gerling said he has been struggling in the early season with the mental side and breaking through when he gets tired.

That wasn't a problem on the big stage Saturday.

"I've been having trouble with my steps," he said, "but I didn't get tired at all."

Collett, meanwhile, had a disappointing Pasco Invite a year ago. He was left out of the 110 hurdles finals because of a clerical error and then let it get to him in the 300s, failing to place.

But his senior year has been much different, and that continued Saturday as he cruised to the title in the 110s, finishing with a personal best of 14.39. He also took second in the 300s in 39.06.

"It was definitely the best I've run all season," he said. "I was at 14.5 three meets in a row and finally broke it, so I am happy."

In the 300s, he had some technical issues, but was still able to leg out the second place finish.

"I think I could've done better. I was on my left leg rather than my right in the last 100 meters," Collett said. "But no regrets. I threw it all out on the track."

While Gerling and Collett were the only local boys to win events, there were a few other Mid-Columbians to take top three finishes.

Richland's Dennis Christensen was second in the shot put and sixth in the discus, and Joey Payne took second in the javelin. Connell's Matt Hadley was third in the javelin, and Sunnyside's Eduardo Salmeron took third in the triple jump. Kamiakin's Anthony Armstrong, still trying to overcome a sickness that he has had for 10 days, struggled to a 12th-place finish in the mile.

Pasco Invite notes: Lakeside vaulter tops 10-year-old mark

If Anandae Clark could ever get healthy, who knows what she could do.

For now, though, she'll surely take a state record in the pole vault.

The Lakeside (9 Mile Falls) senior broke a 10-year-old record Saturday at the 51st annual Pasco Invite, clearing 13 feet to win the title.

She was competing in just her third meet of the season after pulling her hamstring during warmups at a preseason jamboree.

"I know I can go higher," she said. "I haven't run out of my poles and I was still blasting through today. It's not like I can't get on a bigger pole."

Clark also is dealing with a bad ankle, a result of throwing her back out during gymnastics season.

Despite all that, she had the crowd on its feet as she broke the mark of 12-10 set by Kentlake's Stevie Marshale in 2002. Clark shattered the Pasco Invite record of 12-3, set in 2010 by Mead's Tasha Clark.

"My goal is 13-7," Clark said. "That is what the nation's leader is jumping right now."

Making Saturday even more memorable was that her coach, Paul Huffman, wasn't in attendance. He remained behind to work a junior varsity meet, so a community college coach from Spokane was helping her.

"Pasco is such a big meet to win," she said. "Thirteen feet has been my goal since my freshman year."

She also wants another state title. She has won the last three, and Lakeside girls have brought home six of the last seven.

Richland's Elizabeth Quick was in the hunt for the state record with Clark, but bowed at 12-4, still good for second place. Quick also took third in the high jump.

No state record this day: Newport shot putter Aaron Castle came into Saturday's meet hoping to throw a state record.

He left with a first-place plaque and a sore wrist.

"I tweaked my wrist a bit on my first throw," he said. "I still threw all right. I can't be unhappy."

Castle, who will attend the University of Arizona in the fall, told The Spokesman Review he hoped to break Mt. Tahoma's Vince Goldsmith's state record of 69-11 set in 1977.

Castle said he iced it for about an hour after the shot put and that it is already feeling better. He plans to compete later this week.

Local girls finish strong: Kennewick's Angelique Whistocken came up just short in the javelin, taking second place with a throw of 127 feet, 4 inches.

Richland's Chelsea McClammer was second in the 100-meter combined wheelchair race in 20.03 and won the 800 combined race in 2:28. Moses Lake's Alysha Overland was third in the 300 hurdles in 45.46.

Outstanding boys: Mead's Wes Bailey nearly matched Kamiakin's Ellie Heiden.

Bailey won the 200 (21.72), the 400 (48.69) and anchored the winning 4x100 relay in 42.48. For his efforts, Bailey was named the Male Outstanding Athlete of the meet.

Mead also won the team title, finishing with 68.42 points. Wenatchee was second with 55 points.

Sophomore Isaiah Brandt-Sims led Wenatchee with victories in the 100 and the 4x400 relay. He took second in the 200, just .02 seconds behind Bailey.

Curtis high jumper Dakarai Hightower continued to impress, clearing 6-10 to win that title.

Hanford's Merrill takes girls' high jump at Pasco Invite

The squeal Melissa Merrill let out after she cleared the bar in the high jump Saturday said it all.  The Hanford senior soared over 5 feet, 8 inches, setting a school record and bringing home a Pasco Invite title all in one fell swoop at Edgar Brown Stadium.   "I've been trying to get it for a couple of weeks and I finally did," she said. "I'm really excited if you can't tell."

Merrill held the school record of 5-6 coming in, tied with recently graduated Veronica Bradley -- who is now at UC San Diego -- and Taymussa Miller, who is at Eastern Washington.

Merrill and Bradley tied for seventh place at the Class 3A state meet last season in the high jump, but Saturday it was Merrill's turn to put her name atop the list at Hanford High.

"I knew I could make it," she said. "I just told myself I was going to make it, over and over and I did.

"I think I can go higher. The sky is the limit."

Merrill isn't your average high jumper, participating in no offseason training. She competes in swimming in the winter and advanced to the state meet, taking third in the 100 free. She didn't wrap up the swim season until the beginning of January, then took a couple of weeks off.

She competed in the Simplot Games in Pocatello, Idaho -- a premier indoor high school meet -- as not only her first meet of the season, but also the first time she had jumped since last season's state meet, and she has slowly gotten back into the groove she had last season.

"High jumping is something you never lose once you have the technique down," she said. "It is like riding a bike. You get the technique and then you just build on that. Strengthening through workouts is how you go higher."

That weight training is something her jumps coach thinks could push her into another stratosphere at the college level, for now though he was just proud of his latest protg.

"I really believed she would jump a school record today," Clay Lewis said. "For her to win is a dream. Everyone loves her, just a great kid.

"I got a trophy here in '69 and I always want the kids to do better than me."

Merrill has had some talks with BYU about possibly jumping in college for the Cougars. She was told if she cleared 5-8 or 5-9 she would have a chance at a scholarship, though she isn't quite certain about all of that yet.

"I think it would be an awesome experience," she said, "but I'm not sure if I want to put in all the time."

For now, though, she can be content with winning a Pasco Invite title and putting her name along on top of the record books.


Kamiakin girls repeat as Pasco Invite champs

By Craig Craker, Herald staff

After Saturday, they might have to rename the fabled meet the Kamiakin Invite.

The Braves’ girls track and field team dominated the field at the 52nd Annual Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium, setting the record for most points scored by one team. Junior Ellie Heiden won four events for a second consecutive year and was the repeat Female Outstanding Athlete.

“We are really lucky to have good people all around,” said Kamiakin’s Megan Beauchene, who won two events and was second in another. “The bar is definitely raised this year. We expect to win this year. It is nice at these early meets to show we are up there, and hopefully it will payoff in the end.”

Heiden is only the second girl to win back-to-back outstanding athlete at the meet. Rainier Beach’s Ginnie Powell also did it in 2000-01. The team title also marked the first time the Kamiakin’s girls program had won it twice in a row. Kamiakin finished with 101 points, while Curtis was a distant second with 51.

The Braves are the defending Class 3A state champions and feature plenty of athletes with state titles under their belts, led by Heiden who won four golds in Tacoma last year and two as a freshman.

Kamiakin also earned titles from Beauchene in the 800 meters and Elisa Grandemange in the discus.

The star of the show, though, was definitely Heiden, who looked as though nothing had changed from a year ago, running smoothly and easily outdistancing the competition in all four events — the 200, 400, 4x100 and 4x400.

“I think it is harder (this year) because there are more expectations,” Heiden said. “It’s more mentally challenging.”

It definitely looked easy physically, though running five races took a toll on her legs. The much bally-hooed 4x100 relay race between state powers Kamiakin, Class 4A Curtis, Portland’s Jesuit and Southridge turned out to be a rout. The Braves won in 48.82.

“It was kind of a shock,” said Kyra Brannan, who ran the third leg of the relay. “We came in really wanting to be first and keep having that Kamiakin name up there. We had a bad couple of handoffs, but we pulled together as a team.”

Heiden said she was so excited, she started to take off too early, but held up and took the baton even with the rest of the field. She then blew by everyone, winning by .22 seconds.

Coming off the state title in the event a season ago, the Braves had to replace graduated Khadidja Toure, but freshman Heather Donais has done the job so far.

“It’s really easy because I’ve known Heather since we were born,” said Lindsey Schauble, who also placed in both hurdle events. “We wanted to PR and we did. We definitely think (last year’s best) is a time we can get. We’re hoping for another title.”

Heiden is hoping for the same in the 200 (25.36) and 400 (57.18).

“I wasn’t too happy with my time,” she said of the 400. “Everyone says it’s because of the wind, but I think it’s just me. I’ve got to work harder and practice harder.”

Heiden getting any better has to be a frightening thought for her competition. In fact, Kamiakin’s entire team effort has to be a daunting sight for the rest of the state.

The Braves are even better than last season, as they have someone that conceivably could place in every event.

Along with Grandemange’s win the discus (130 feet, 5 inches), she also took sixth in the javelin. Danielle Brandon was third in the pole vault, Brannan was fourth in the long jump and Andrea Stapleton was third in the high jump (5-4).

“I shouldn’t be upset, but I wanted to PR,” Grandemange said after throwing 8 feet shorter than last weekend. “I might’ve been nervous.”

She set the school record in the discus a week ago at the Davis Invitational, throwing 138-4, but in Pasco she had some difficulty keeping it in play as she scratched four times. She was all smiles afterward, though, winning at the Pasco Invite for the first time.

Beauchene also could barely contain her excitement, as she ran a strong time in the mile finishing second to North Central’s Katie Knight. She then bested Knight and Richland’s Lauren Perry in the 800.

“(Today) went how I wanted it to go,” Beauchene said. “I think confidence (has been a key). Last year I realized I can run with the top girls in the state.”

Beauchene also picked up a win in the 4x400 relay, teaming up with Brandon, Heiden and Michelle Fletcher to easily win that event in 4:01.61. Earlier, Fletcher placed second in the 1,600.

It capped off a day that saw the award stand painted in Kamiakin red.


Radliff third in long jump

Payton Radliff was flying high Saturday.

The Richland High junior set two personal bests in the boys long jump, taking third at the 52nd Annual Pasco Invite at Edgar Brown Stadium.

“I just warmed up pretty well and was feeling good,” he said. “I got off the board well.”

Radliff set his PR on his first finals jump, and then topped it on the next one with a leap of 22 feet, 0.25 inches. His previous best was 22 feet flat. Last year at the Invite, Radliff took ninth, so he was more than pleased with his third Saturday. He’s hoping to go even farther as the season wears on.

“My coach thinks I can go 23,” he said. “I scratched on a 22-7 (on Saturday) ...”

Kamiakin’s K Perrins didn’t set any PRs running on the 4x100-meter relay Saturday, but that didn’t matter one bit.

The senior ruptured a disc in his back during the football season, playing just four games. At the time, he was one of the leading receivers in yards and touchdowns in the Mid-Columbia Conference.

The injury cost him the rest of the season, though he was on the sideline of every game, in a dress shirt and tie. Not exactly the way he planned on spending his senior year.

“It’s awesome,” he said. “I’m a little slower, but it’s awesome to be back.”

Perrins also had planned to play basketball, but that didn’t happen because of the injury.

While he was hurt, he couldn’t run or jog for six months, instead he did pool workouts as he avoided surgery.

Now, he is back on the track for one final push toward the state meet and hopefully a scholarship.

The Braves qualified for state in the 4x100 last season but lost Corey McLean off of that team because of graduation. He’s been replaced by Stuart Miner, who was at Richland last season. Austin Gutierrez and Jim Fowler are back from last year’s squad.

“Guti and Jim have improved a lot,” Perrins said after the Braves won their preliminary heat Saturday and finished 13th overall. “We have had guys step up for a few meets.”

Elsewhere, Hanford’s Ben Kelly had a big day, taking second in the 100 (11.16) and fifth in the 200 (22.64). Walla Walla’s sprint relay made up of Robert Miller, Stuart Gillin, Jonah Hoe and Ethan Gardner took second in 43.09 seconds. Kamiakin’s Brendan Rexus tied for third in the high jump, clearing 6-2, while Pasco’s Zach Kreider was third in the discus at 153-4.

Wenatchee won the team title with 47 points, while Hanford was the best local team in 10th place with 20 points.

Bradley surprises self in 3,200

Richland High’s Lindsey Bradley expected to compete against a strong field Saturday in the 3,200, but she certainly didn’t expect to win the event going away.

Bradley ran a personal best time of 11:07.83 to win by 16 seconds over Lewis & Clark’s Gracie Ledwith.

“I surprised myself,” she said. “I’m really happy with it.”

Bradley advanced to state in the 1,600 and 3,200 last season, only to miss the meet in Tacoma because of a stress fracture in her foot. It was something that happened during the district meet and got progressively worse.

“It took about eight or nine weeks to heal,” she said. “I couldn’t run, just walk. It was super tough on me. Not a very happy place in my life.”

She worked through the injury by biking, doing gym workouts and swimming.

The injury healed in time for her to run cross country and qualify for the state meet last fall. But then disaster struck again as she came down with the flu the day before the meet, all but ending her chances of a title.

“I haven’t had a lucky state meet yet,” she said. “Hopefully this track season will be a breakthrough for me.”

If she keeps running like she did Saturday, it certainly seems so.

WHO’LL STOP THE RAIN: For more than a year, Richland’s Elizabeth Quick figured she didn’t want to go to the University of Washington because she wasn’t so sure about the weather on the West Side.

On Wednesday, she finally decided that Seattle might be a pretty good place to live and signed with the Huskies to compete in track and field.

She’s hoping with that decision being put to rest, she can get back to clearing big heights in the pole vault.

While she didn’t go as high as she had hoped at the Invite on Saturday, she still cleared her best height of the season at 12-0 to finish second.

“I don’t have to worry as much at every meet about having to do great to get offers,” she said. “Now I just want to jump high so when I go into freshman year, I’m ready to go.”

She also hopes to set the state record before the year is out, and clear 13 feet. She will compete at the Oregon Relays next weekend in Eugene, which is the site of her personal record of 12-4.

HOW MANY JUMPS DOES IT TAKE? Columbia (Burbank)’s Harley McBride certainly got her fill of the Pasco Invite.

The senior, who signed with Eastern Oregon earlier this week, made a whopping 21 attempts at the high jump. Despite all of that, she had to settle for second place behind Lakeland (Idaho)’s Jordan Ward after a six-jump jumpoff.

“I’d never been in one, so it was kind of cool,” McBride said. “You get really tired, though.”

The jumpoff starts at an inch higher than the pair had previously completed. If both missed, it went down an inch. If both cleared the height, it went up an inch. Back and forth they went, until one missed and the other made it at the same height.

McBride competed at the Invite the last two seasons, finishing ninth as a junior, so she was more than thrilled with her second-place finish. She also cleared 5-6 for just the second time in her career, and is hoping to reach 5-10 before the season is out.

Wenatchee’s Isaiah Brandt-Sims ran the third fastest 100-meter race in state history in the preliminaries.

Brandt-Sims ran a time of 10.48 seconds, which puts him behind only Ellensburg’s Ja’Warren Hooker (10.27) and University’s Anthony Buchanan (10.43) on the all-time list.

“I’m really happy,” he said. “Last week I had a couple of days off during spring break and it helped me peak this week. I’m hoping I can do even better.”

The time is the fastest ever by a junior in the state, giving Brandt-Sims the fastest times in state history as a freshman, sophomore and now junior.

He wasn’t done there, though, winning the 200 and anchoring the 4x400 relay to victory as well. His squad took third in the 4x100. For all of it, he won the Male Outstanding Athlete of the Meet.

In the 4x100, he received the baton in fifth place and nearly brought the Panthers all the way back for the title, but just couldn’t quite make up the ground.

“Me and the guy in Lane 10 kind of hit each other a bit and it slowed me down,” he said. “I just went as hard as I could.”

Which could be said for all of his events.

WELCOME BACK: West Valley’s Lindsay Burns was back on a track for the first time in nearly two years.

The speedster tore her ACL playing basketball for the Rams during her junior season, causing her to miss all of last track season.

She returned to play soccer in the fall, but skipped basketball season to avoid a repeat injury. It took her until this point of the season to return to the track because of travel with her club soccer team.

“I’m really glad to be back,” she said. “It was hard missing all of last year. I’m excited to finish off my senior year (in track).”

Burns, who ran in the 4x400 relay, has signed to play soccer at Baylor University in Texas.

QUICK HEALER: Wenatchee’s Cody O’Connell tore his ACL in October. Just six months later, the 6-foot-9, 350-pound behemoth won the boys shot put title.

Using a step and throw motion, the Washington State football signee launched a toss of 58-4.75 to bring home the crown, setting a school record in the process.


Kamiakin girls claim third straight Pasco Invite crown

April 19, 2014

Even as Ellie Heiden showed she is human after all, the Kamiakin girls track and field team proved to be a machine built for winning.

The Braves won the team’s third consecutive Pasco Invite team title and broke their own record for points scored, while Heiden lost a race at the meet for the first time since she was a freshman. She rebounded, though, to win three gold medals and grab a third consecutive Outstanding Athlete of the Meet award.

Seniors Megan Beauchene and Elisa Grandemange also won titles, and Beauchene, Heiden, Emily Moon and Danielle Brandon won the 4x400-meter relay.

The Braves finished with 109.2 points, topping last year’s total of 101 for a meet record. Bothell was a distant second with 43 points.

“No matter the size of the meet or who is there, it is still fun,” Heiden said. “Even if individuals don’t win, if we win as a team, it makes it so much better.”

Heiden finished fourth in the 100 meters in 12.53 seconds, shocking the big crowd at Edgar Brown Stadium. While it was the first time she’d run in the event this season, it still was an unexpected loss for the 10-time state champion sprinter. It was the first time she’d lost a Pasco Invite race since 2011 and the first time she’d lost a race in the state of Washington since last April.

“I’m so blessed that I’ve gotten to this point that it is weird to lose,” she said. “I would’ve really liked to win, but I think I’m learning a lot more lessons this year than I did last year. I could’ve run the 4x1, but I wanted to challenge myself (in the 100) and I wasn’t up to the challenge today.”

Heiden and her teammates helped wipe away those early disappointments, though.

Beauchene had a dominating performance in the elite mile, winning in 5:00.82, though she did finish a surprising second in the 800.

“I’ve been working on finding my kick this year,” she said. “I had it last year, but it hasn’t been there this year. I had a hard cross country season, and I’m mentally and physically coming back from that. The time wasn’t what I wanted, but I’m good to go.”

Beauchene, who will run for Washington in the fall, wrapped up her Pasco Invite career with six titles.

Elisa Grandemange won her second Pasco title, throwing a season best 142 feet, 6 inches in the discus to top league rival Samantha Lester from Kennewick.

Grandemange wasn’t terribly happy with her mark, though.

“I didn’t work as much over the summer as last year,” she said. “I learned the hammer throw and lost myself in that and kind of forgot about the discus. Now I’m trying to catch up.”

Which spells problems for the rest of the state in the event. Grandemange, the defending state champion, is hoping to use this victory as a springboard going forward.

“I want to throw 150 this year,” she said. “I’m finally starting to get reps in.”

She also threw a personal best 130-0 in the javelin, taking fourth place.

Elsewhere, Lindsey Schauble was third in the 100 hurdles and sixth in the long jump, Andrea Stapleton was third in the high jump and fifth in the triple jump, Samantha Raines was fourth in the pole vault, Moon was fourth in the 800, Sira Toure was sixth in the shot put and discus, Brandon was eighth in the pole vault and the team took sixth in the 4x100.

The collective whole certainly showed Saturday that they should have very few problems adding regional and state titles to their résumés.

And leading the way will be Heiden, who despite the loss showed why she is still the best girl athlete in the state.

She rebounded quickly to win the 400, though it looked like she might let a big lead get away in the final 50 meters.

“I couldn’t feel anyone and I figured I’d just finish with good form,” she said. “I tired to listen to the crowd. When they yell other people’s names, then I know someone is coming. They were so loud, though, I couldn’t hear her footsteps. I saw her in the final 20 meters.”

But Heiden flipped the switch and held off Beamer’s Chante Spotser, winning in a time of 57.97.

She crushed the field in the 200, winning in 25.46 and avenging her loss to Bothell’s Sarah Stavig in the 100.

“I don’t think I was trying to prove anything to anyone else, just myself that I could pull this one out,” Heiden said.

She then anchored the mile relay to a win, as Beauchene turned a fourth-place start into first place, handing the baton off to Moon, who raced out to a big lead that Heiden made stand up.

Now, Heiden looks forward to what the rest of the season may hold, hoping that the two-month break she took in the offseason to heal up will help set her up for some record-breaking times next month.

“This year has been more mentally hard,” she said. “Everyone just expects a lot. We have pretty big goals for this year and a lot of people don’t think I can do it.”

She showed Saturday that she is still plenty capable.

Hanford boys make history with Pasco Invite title

The Hanford boys track and field team took the first of what it hopes will be four giant steps this season — winning the Pasco Invitational title Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium.

Led by Dallon Grinder’s victory in the discus, Ben Kelly’s second-place finish in the 200 meters and third in the 100 and long jump, and a second place in the 4x100 relay, the Falcons won their first team title in the 53rd year of the fabled meet.

“We knew that if everyone performed their best, we could win it,” Grinder said. “I’m pretty satisfied. That is a big accomplishment. It is awesome.”

The Falcons hope it leads to more success going forward.

“One of our goals is to go undefeated in league, regional and state champs,” Kelly said. “We definitely have the team to do it.”

Coach Darren Crow had told his kids that they could win the title Saturday, but saying it and watching them do it are two different things.

“It is special for these kids,” he said. “They are part of history that has never happened in the school before. These kids have really stepped up. They have seen the possibilities for the rest of the year.

“This is just a stepping stone to get where they can be. They truly believe in the end when we go to state, and take the team we should have, they can win state.”

The Falcons finished with 50 points, topping Mead’s 43.

Grinder started his day with a second place in the shot put, throwing a personal best by more than three feet. He threw 54 feet, 9 inches, losing to R.A. Long’s Mitch Moe at 55-5.75.

“I’ve been throwing bad lately and was just waiting for my form to click,” he said. “And it clicked four times in a row. I plan on throwing a lot farther than that.”

He did throw a lot farther in the discus, setting a personal best by four feet this time, though he was unhappy with his form. He said if he gets his technique together, he thinks he can throw in the 170s or 180s, which would put him in the hunt for a state title.

Kelly could be in a state title mix as well. He entered with the top 200 time in the state and performed well, finishing second in 22.01. It was his sixth race of the day, counting preliminaries, and he certainly was feeling it down the stretch.

“I’m a little disappointed, but at the same time it’s been a long day,” he said. “It was a fast heat and there are a lot of really fast guys here.”

Kelly decided not to play basketball this winter so he could focus on getting faster on the track. He did lots of conditioning and went to indoor meets at Idaho and Washington State, and it is paying off.

“I feel like that is the reason I’ve been so successful so far,” he said, “but I still have a long ways to go.”

And that includes a trip to Tacoma and a possible state title.

Hanford got a fifth-place finish from Jordan Reyes in the triple jump. The Falcons also set a school record in the 4x100, finishing second in 43.83 seconds. Joseph Gauthier, Tim Tefft, Kevon Skinner and Kelly combined to set the record.

“Everyone had pretty good performances today,” Kelly said. “I’m happy we came out here and did our best.”

Kelly and his teammates hope the best they showed Saturday continues the rest of the season.

“Right now, this is the best team we’ve ever had,” Crow said. “Cross your fingers and keep having them doing what they are doing.”

Pasco Invite notes: Young makes strides in 400

Pasco’s Christian Young has big plans for his junior track and field season.

The sprinter hopes to set the school record in the 400 and make state. He got his year off to a good start Saturday, finishing second in the event at the 53rd Pasco Invitational at Edgar Brown Stadium.

“It’s slower than I was hoping for,” he said. “But at least I made it and did finish second.”

The school record in the event is 47.6 seconds, and he has a personal best of 48.67. He ran a 50.09 on Saturday, finishing behind Olympic’s Jaleel Elmore who won in 49.66.

“I’ve just got to practice hard,” Young said.

He also placed sixth in the 100 and fifth in the 200.

Other Tri-City athletes placing in the top four Saturday were Kamiakin’s Cameron Glade, who was third in the 1,600 in 4:22.52; Kennewick’s Dylan Tennancour, fourth in the javelin with a throw of 173 feet, 2 inches; Kamiakin’s Garrett Kraal, fourth in the elite mile in 4:16.61; Kamiakin’s Jim Fowler, fourth in the 300 hurdles in 40.49; and Chiawana’s 4x400 was third.

On the girls side, Kennewick’s Samantha Lester was second in the discus at 139-1, Walla Walla’s Madelyn Sirmon was third in the javelin at 132-0, and Hanford’s 4x400 relay was fourth. Southridge had a solid day, as Marissa Berry was third in the pole vault at 11-0, Bree Lane was fourth in the 300 hurdles in 46.18, Makenna Behrens was third in the long jump at 17-6.25, and the 4x100 relay was fourth.

SOARING TO NEW HEIGHTS: Allison Wujek had never qualified for the Pasco Invite before, so the DeSales senior made up for lost time placing second in the high jump, clearing 5-4.

“It’s a very big stage,” she said. “To see all these big schools is exciting.”

She’s hoping her performance Saturday will pay off later this season at the state meet, where she has struggled in the past.

“I’m planning on changing that this year,” she said. “I’m going for the best I can be — for the title.”

OUTSTANDING: Lewiston hurdler Zion Stuffle is just a sophomore, but he won the 110s in 14.31 and the 300s in 38.25 and was then voted the male Outstanding Athlete of the Meet.

LONG TERM: Kennewick, Pasco and Walla Walla all competed for the 53rd time at the Invite, while Richland chose to go to the Oregon Relays, ending its streak of consecutive meets at 52.

MISSING: Wenatchee’s Isaiah Brandt-Sims was a no-show Saturday as he has been battling a foot injury and his coaches are hoping to prepare him for the state meet in late May.

STUPID WIND: The weather was spectacular until 2:37 p.m., when a big gust of wind ushered in a normal Tri-Cities spring day and caused everyone involved to bundle up for the rest of the meet.

NO JEWELRY: A Southridge boys relay team was disqualified because a runner taped over ear rings, which is against meet rules. The team won its heat.

The Pasco Invite is a tough beast to tackle. Perhaps that’s a part of its growing reputation as one of the nation’s top track meets.

While the state meet is spread out over three days, the Pasco Invite squishes 18 events into a 10-hour period — no small feat for even the best-conditioned athletes.


Kamiakin girls claim fourth consecutive Pasco Invite crown

April 18, 2015

Sure the Kamiakin girls track team lost some major point scorers from a squad that had won three consecutive Class 3A state championships.  Just don't tell the 2015 Braves they can't win another title without Ellie Heiden, Elisa Grandemange and Megan Beauchene, who combined for 16 individual titles in their prep careers. They'll be happy to prove you wrong.

The Kamiakin girls won their fourth consecutive Pasco Invite team title Saturday, piling up 70 1/2 points to beat second-place Rocky Mountain by 29 1/2 points, a convincing display that the Braves have plenty of firepower left to pull off another big finish in Tacoma next month. "We had a ton of great kids last year, but these kids were here (last season) too. Nobody noticed them because of the big dogs we had, " Kamiakin coach Cheryl Schauble said. "As cocky as it sounds, (this group) hasn't lost (a state meet) in three years. They don't like losing."

Senior Andrea Stapleton provided the Braves their only individual title for the day with a winning leap of 5 feet, 6 inches in the high jump. Her sister, sophomore Allison Stapleton, finished fourth with a mark of 5-2. It's an event that runs in the family's blood. Their father, Dave Stapleton, was a former high jumper at BYU who still holds the school record at 7-5 1/2. Andrea has already committed to jump for the Cougars next year. But for now, she's enjoying competing alongside her sibling and best friend. "Being behind Andrea is tough. She's got two school records, " Allison said. "Everybody always asks, 'Are you going to beat them?' " The Stapletons also made their mark in the triple jump - Allison was sixth with a mark of 36-7 3/4 while Andrea took seventh at 36-7 - and the long jump, where Allison finished sixth with a mark of 17-4.

But they certainly weren't the only Braves to make an impression. Heather Donais and Lindsey Schauble scored major points in both hurdle events - Donais took third in the 100-meter hurdles (14.95 seconds) and second in the 300 lows (44.17), while Schauble was fourth in the 100 (15.14) and the 300 (45.43). Schauble also finished eighth in the long jump.  Donais ran with a small cross drawn on the back of her left hand, a reminder of her late grandmother Jacqueline, whom she affectionately called "Nanna." "It hit me hard, because she's the first relative of mine who has died, " Donais said. "Before I start a race, I always whisper, 'For her.' "

Kamiakin senior Emily Moon added a second place finish in the 800 (2:19.34) and Samantha Raines took fifth in the pole vault (11-6). The Braves also took fourth in the 4x100 and 4x400 relays.

Walla Walla took eighth in the team race thanks to a pair of podium finishes from Madi Doepker, who took third in the shot put (36-9) and third in the discus (120-7). Maddie Sirmon chipped in a third-place finish in the javelin (141-0), and Courtney Cox took third in the 3,200 meters (11:16.53).

Two meet records were broken in the triple jump and the pole vault. Laura Marty, a junior at Bishop Blanchet, set a state mark in the pole vault when she cleared 13-6 to beat Marissa Berry of Southridge (12-6).  "This was a really happy day. I went in with the idea of working on my form. Getting the record is a bonus, " Marty said. "I was really happy with the competition. It's hard to find competition that can (attempt) 13 feet. Today we had three."

In the triple jump, two freshmen from Curtis High School - Saudia James-Heard and Alexis Ellis - put the jumping world on notice when they both cleared 39 feet. James-Heard, who won the AAU national triple jump title last summer, leaped 40-3 1/4 to set a meet record.  "I like running with older kids. It's a real eye-opener for state. Plus, the athletes here are really nice, " said James-Heard, who also took fourth in the 400.

Angela Cardon of Pasco took third with a personal best of 37-1 1/4.

When it came time to name an athlete of the meet, Bothell's Sarah Stavig stood above the rest with individual titles in the 100 and 200 along with a strong lead leg on the Cougars' 4x100 relay team, which took second. "I have pretty high expectations for myself, " Stavig said. "I struggled a little bit (in the 100 prelims) but still won the heat. I had a really good reaction time out of the blocks in the finals."

Chiawana’s Roman Ruiz, Dre Dorton among local boys standouts at Pasco Invite

But for Chiawana junior Roman Ruiz, a seasoned decathlete, it’s a walk in the park.  Ruiz, who won the age 15-16 men’s decathlon at the National Junior Olympics last summer, took on three events during Saturday’s festivities and posted a personal best in the pole vault at 15 feet even to finish second. He also clocked 15.06 seconds in the 110-meter high hurdles and ran a leg on the Riverhawks’ 4x400-meter relay team that finished eighth.  “It’s definitely a long day. I got here at 8 a.m. After starting the pole vault (at 9:30 a.m.), I went straight to the hurdles (10:50 a.m.) and then back to the pole vault,” Ruiz said.   Compared to the decathlon — a 10-event competition held over two days — Ruiz had a rather easy day Saturday.  “Doing the decathlon, you get 30 minutes between each event,” he said. “Today was super long, but I like the competition.”

Pasco senior Christian Young didn’t have it so easy. The talented sprinter, who finished second at last year’s Class 4A 400-meters, ran six races in all, including preliminary heats in the 100- and 200-meters. His best performance came in the 400, where he was edged by Bothell senior Ryan Croson by just under half a second.   “I’m happy with my effort. I’m not happy with the result. I’m hard on myself when I don’t win,” Young said.  He shouldn’t feel too bad about finishing second to Croson, though.  The Bothell standout won the 400 and ran legs on the Cougars’ 4x100 (first) and 4x400 (fourth) relay teams but was shocked to learn he was chosen as the meet’s top boys competitor.   “I had no idea this was coming. It’s surreal,” Croson said. “Christian Young ran four events, and (Chiawana’s Dre) Dorton in the 100 and 200, he moved.”

Dorton was a busy man, too, running five races, including prelims and finals in the 100 and 200 plus a 4x100 relay leg, but he validated himself as one of the state’s top sprinters. The Riverhawks senior took fourth in the 100 with a time of 10.85 and finished his day with a second-place finish in the 200 in 21.94, just one-hundredth of a second behind Jonah Mathews of Fife (21.93).

Posting a much easier win in the 100 was Eastmont senior Phillip Moore, who obliterated the field with a top time of 10.45, three-tenths ahead of Mathews. Moore’s time was .01 seconds off the Pasco Invite record of 10.44 shared by Ja’Warren Hooker of Ellensburg and Anthony Buchanan of University.  “Perfect weather. Fast track,” Moore said after his win in the 100. “This is all practice for state.”

Southridge senior Austin Beyer enjoyed a second-place finish in the javelin, twice posting a personal best in finishing the day with a top mark of 186-10, well behind Central Kitsap’s Hudson Keffer (207-5).   “Having Hudson here really pushed me to get close to 200 (feet),” Beyer said. “I don’t think blowing people out of the water (in local meets) helps that much.”

Ryan Best of Pasco recorded a personal best in the triple jump, going 44-0 3/4 inches to take third, and Kamiakin’s Darreon Moore finished fourth in the long jump with a mark of 20-10 1/4.   Daniel Pfaff of Hanford tied a personal best in the high jump at 6-2, taking fifth behind Jakobe Ford of Shadle Park, who cleared 6-10.   Mac Graff of Chiawana won three events, taking the wheelchair shot put (14-10 1/2), the wheelchair discus (49-9) and the wheelchair javelin (52-4).


Mead Boys and Tahoma girls claim Pasco Invite titles

April 16, 2016

John Crawford steps down from Invite

Meet director John Crawford is stepping down.  Before the records started falling at the 55th annual Pasco Invite, meet director John Crawford announced Saturday that this was indeed his final Invite.

“I haven’t told anyone, not even the family,” Crawford told the crowd at Edgar Brown Stadium. “But this is my last Pasco Invite. For health reasons, I cannot keep doing what I’m doing.”

Crawford, who has directed the Invite since 1974, also will be inducted into the WIAA Hall of Fame in May as a contributor.

But as everyone knows, what Crawford does is for the kids. So let’s get to it.

Mead won the boys team title for the 13th time in school history with 45 points, while Bishop Blanchet was second and Kamiakin fifth.

Zach Shugart of Bishop Blanchet was named the Outstanding Male Athlete of the Meet, setting a meet record of 16 feet, 3 inches in the pole vault. The previous record was 16-1, set in 2002 by McKane Lee of Arlington and Tyson Byers of University.

Kamiakin’s Fishburn takes 3,200 title, Chiawana’s Ruiz second in pole vault at 15-9, Umatilla’s Cardenas runs to third place in elite mile

Kamiakin’s Phillip Fishburn was the lone Mid-Columbia champion Saturday under the sunny skies. He turned in a time of 9 minutes, 29.71 minutes in the 3,200 meters, beating Bellingham’s Cade Brown by a couple of steps.

“I didn’t like my spot,” Fishburn said of the start, which included all 40 runners. “But I got out OK. It’s cool that the Pasco Invite is right in our backyard.”

Fishburn, who was fifth in the event last year, is headed in the fall to Gonzaga, where he will run cross country and track.

Chiawana’s Roman Ruiz finished second in the pole vault with a personal-best mark of 15 feet, 9 inches. He was sixth in the shot put with another personal best of 51-7.

“This is always a good meet for me,” said Ruiz, who will serve an LDS mission in Italy after he graduates in June. “I had a PR in the pole vault last year at 15 feet.

“I had been waiting to go that high (15-9). I knew I had it in me. The adrenaline is there with the competition.”

Ruiz also was entered in the hurdle events, but he strained a hamstring Monday. When he came out of the blocks Saturday in the 110 high hurdles, he knew it wasn’t meant to be.

“The hurdles is one of my main events,” he said. “I love to have the kind of competition that this meet brings.”

Umatilla’s Fabian Cardenas ran to a third-place finish in the elite mile with a time of 4:14.87, getting past North Central’s Justin Janke right before the finish line.

Cardenas, who won the past two Oregon 3A/2A/1A cross country titles, was sitting in sixth with one lap to go. He started picking guys off with 300 meters remaining to finish third in his first Invite.

“I looked at this meet last year, and it was pretty fast,” Cardenas said. “I talked with my coach, and we thought it would be a good race. On the last lap, I was confident I would move up. I’ve been working on my closing speed. Coming here brought out the best in me.”

Michael Slagowski of Rocky Mountain won the elite mile in a meet-record time of 4:05.71.

“I was here last year and ran a 4:12,” said Slagowski, who now has won the event twice. “Getting that record was a goal of mine. My plan was to get out to a good start. I knew Justin Janke would push me, but so did other guys.”

Slagowski, who has won Idaho 5A titles in cross country and the 800, 1,600 and 3,200, will run at Penn State in the fall.

Hanford’s Joseph Gauthier finished third in the 100 (10.81) and sixth in the 200 (22.39), and ran a leg on the 4x400 relay team that finished out of the top eight. His times in the 100 and 200 were personal bests.

“I was proud of that,” Gauthier said of his 100 time. “The guys here make you run faster. You are running against some of the best in the nation.”

Chiawana’s Joshua Wilson was seventh in the 100 (11.14) and ninth in the 200 (22.82).

Kamiakin’s Wyatt Musser met with some stiff competition in the shot put and discus.

Musser had a personal best of 50-10 in the shot put to finish seventh. Chelan’s Jose Padilla unleashed a monster throw of 61-4 1/4 to win by almost 7 feet.

In the discus, Musser had the third-best throw in the prelims at 164-8, but he scratched all three throws in the finals and finished fourth.

“I wasn’t expecting to place in the shot put, so that was a good day,” Musser said. “I love this (discus) ring, but I had a bad day. I had competition, and that may have gotten to me, and it usually doesn’t. I love the competition I get, and they are all good people.”

Walla Walla’s Alex Iben was second in the 800 with a time of 1:55.99, while Kamiakin’s Braxton Gutierrez was fifth in a time of 1:56.30.

Sunnyside’s Nathon Maltos finished fifth in the 400 (49.87), Walla Walla’s Logan Mullen was seventh in the javelin (166-8), and Kamiakin’s Garrett Paxton was eighth in the high jump with a personal best of 6-2.

In the long jump, Walla Walla’s Mitchell Jacobson was sixth (21-2 1/4), and Chiawana’s Dominic Lee was eighth (21-1).

The triple jump saw Royal’s Joe Lang finish third (44-10), Walla Walla’s Sam Hoe take fifth (43-1 1/4) and Prosser’s Michael Kernan eighth (41-10).

Kamiakin’s Donais has outstanding day at Pasco Invite

Joyce Donais has been bringing her daughter Heather to the Pasco Invite since she was 5 years old.

Over the years, Heather Donais must have soaked up some knowledge. The Kamiakin senior won the 100- and 300-meter hurdles Saturday in the 55th annual event and ran a leg on the Braves’ 4x100 relay team that finished fifth.

As the sun set on Edgar Brown Stadium, Donais was named the Outstanding Female Athlete of the Meet.

“This is a surprise to me,” Donais said as she clutched the plaque that doubles as a clock. “I don’t even know what to say. This has been my goal. I couldn’t even think that coaches would vote for me for just doing the hurdles.”

Donais did more than just run the hurdles. She turned in a personal best 14.47 seconds in winning the 100 hurdles, then ran a 45.04 to win the 300 hurdles by more than three-quarters of a second.

“The 300 was closer than I thought it would be,” Donais said. “The heat before us had gun problems, and we had to wait in the sun. When I came around the corner, I usually have a kick, but it wasn’t there. It’s nice to win both. It’s my senior year, and that’s how I wanted it.”

Sunnyside’s Jessica Linde was third in the 300 hurdles (46.54), with Hanford’s Lele Williams fourth (46.65) and Walla Walla’s Paige Gardner eighth (47.61).

Hanford’s Nyenuchi Okemgbo finished fifth in the 100 hurdles (15.37), while Southridge’s Mertece Hatchett was seventh (15.55).

The Kamiakin girls, who had won the past four team titles, were fourth behind Tahoma (55 points), Rocky Mountain (42 1/2) and Curtis (36). The Braves rolled up 33 points, helped out by Donais, Mirannda Shulman’s fifth-place finish in the 400 (58.11), Lindsey Lowe’s fifth place in the 1,600 (5:20.81), the 4x100 relay, and Allison Stapleton, who placed seventh in the long jump (17-3 1/4) and eighth in the triple jump (36-7 3/4).

Pasco senior Angela Cardon had an outstanding day, finishing second in the 100 and 200 meters, fourth in the long jump (17-8 3/4) and seventh in the triple jump (36-10).

Cardon, who had a slight lead over Tahoma’s Olivia Ribera for most of the 200, got edged at the finish line with a time of 24.79. She ran a personal best 24.74 in the prelims.

“I’m happy with the 200,” Cardon said. “I didn’t place in the running events at the Invite last year. I’m not happy with my jumps. I wasn’t real motivated. It’s hard when you have events you excel at, and then I have to jump. But I still had to compete.

“Invites are one of those meets where you have prelims and finals. I makes for a long day.”

Cardon’s time of 12.01 in the 100 was a half a step behind winner Wurrie Njadoe of Shorecrest (11.93).

Connell’s Ashton Riner won the javelin with a toss of 138-3, while Walla Walla’s Emma Wenzel was eighth (118-9).

Hanford’s Morgan Rasmussen was fourth in the high jump (5-4), and Amanda Andersen was sixth in the pole vault with a school record of 11 feet.

Tahoma rode the legs of the Wilson sisters — freshman twins Miya and Aliya, and junior Tierra — to victory. The trio teamed with Ribera to win the 4x100 relay, shattering the meet and stadium records with a time of 47.13.

“We are so happy,” Miya said. “Being sisters, it is really fun. There is a connection there — we know each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and we get to share this, which is awesome.”

Tahoma also got a pile of points from junior Ginny Mehl, who was third in the shot put (37-8), discus (124-9) and javelin (132-2).

Mountlake Terrace jumping sensation Chinne Okoronkwo competed in just one event Saturday, but walked away with the title as well as meet and stadium records in the triple jump with a leap of 41-9 1/4. The old record was 40-3 1/4.

“I had really good jumps and it felt good,” said Okoronkwo, who was competing in her first Pasco Invite. “This was fun. We has wonderful weather, the pit was good and getting the record was amazing.”


Hanford’s Gauthier has a banner day at Pasco Invite
APRIL 15, 2017

The 56th annual Pasco Invite had quite the local flair Saturday. The event opened with the Southridge boys winning the distance medley relay, and closed with the Hanford girls winning the mile relay as the sun set on Edgar Brown Stadium.

The meet featured 7-foot high jumpers, javelins flying nearly 200 feet, and Connell’s Ashton Riner winning the girls javelin for the second consecutive year.

The Tahoma girls took home the team title with 68 points, beating second-place Rocky Mountain by 29 points. The Hanford girls finished third — the best finish in school history.

Mt. Spokane won the boys team title with 45 points. Hanford and Chiawana tied for sixth with 26 points.

Tahoma’s Aliya Wilson was named the meet’s Outstanding Female Athlete, while thrower Grady Leonard of Coeur d’Alene and jumper Jakobe’ Ford of Shadle Park were the co-boys winner. Hanford won the combined sportsmanship award.

Hanford’s Joe Gauthier became the first Mid-Columbia runner to win the 100 meters since Marques Avery of Pasco in 2010.

Gauthier held off Rodrick Fisher of East Valley to win the 100 title in 10.61 seconds, breaking Ben Kelly’s school record of 10.69.

“I did not expect to win,” Gauthier said of the 100. “The kid (Fisher) came in with a 10.64. Come race time, I had a good mentality.”

Fisher returned the favor in the 200, beating Gauthier with a time of 21.67. Gauthier ran a 21.82 as the two ran neck and neck most of the race.

“He got a step on me with about 20 meters to go,” Gauthier said. “It’s hard to match a big stride like that. It’s not a bad day. It was a lot of fun. I won’t get this kind of competition again until state.”

Gauthier also ran the anchor leg on the 4x100 relay team that was pushed out to to Lane 10, but finished second in a time of 43.30, about a half-second behind Curtis. Joining Gauthier on the relay team were Mateo Valadez, Beau Franklin and Alex Izquierdo.

“That was a good finish,” Gauthier said. “Good hand-offs all the way around.”

The Southridge boys distance medley relay team didn’t get off to a good start Saturday. Ethan Dorow ran the 1,200 to start the race, then handed off to Wade Yocom, who ran the 400. Antonio Garcilazo handled the 800, and the Suns were up to third place when anchor man James Chan took off to run the final 1,600.

Chan stuck with the main pack for the first three laps or so, then made his move with less than a lap to go.

“The blue guy (Bonney Lake) took off and I decide to stay with him,” Chan said. “I passed him the last 200. It was exhilarating.”

The Suns crossed the finish line in 10:48.01 and gave credit for their success to distance coach Andrew Gonzalez, a former Southridge standout.

“When he first came in, we knew who he was,” Yocom said. “When you see his name on the record board, he has your respect.”

The Hanford girls won the mile relay at the Pasco Invite for the first time. The Falcons, with the speed of Nyenuchi Okemgbo, Amanda Fraga, Rachel Schmidt and Lele Williams, turned in a time of 4:05.62, nearly a second faster than runner-up Selah.

Riner gave a boost to all the small-school throwers when she unleashed a personal best throw of 152 feet, 7 inches on her first throw, that held up to win the javelin.

It’s the first time a Connell athlete has won an event back-to-back at the Pasco Invite.

“Going in, I was nervous,” said Riner, who earlier in the week signed to throw at BYU. “I had adrenaline on that first throw.”

Her previous PR was 145-11, and her dad, Wayne, promised her a steak dinner and a stop at Dutch Bros. if she hit 150 feet. Dad was was true to his word.

“It’s been a great day,” Riner said.

The boys high jump saw Walla Walla’s Mitchell Jacobson, Jakobe’ Ford of Shadle Park and Tyler Cronk of Kentridge clear 6-10.

With the bar at 7 feet, Ford was the only man to clear it. He attempted to break the meet record of 7-2 1/2 set in 1985, putting the bar at 7-2 3/4. Ford failed to clear the height on three attempts, but it did not tarnish his performance.

“People usually are done at 6-4 when I come in,” said Ford, who has signed to compete at Texas Tech. “Guys like them make it fun.”

Jacobson, who equaled his personal best, was fortunate to compete at all after missing four days of school with an illness and losing five pounds.

“It’s hard to get competition in some of the meets to help you peak and do your best,” Jacobson said. “I wish I could see them more often. I wish I could have gotten 7 feet.”

It was the third Pasco Invite high jump title for Ford, who also won as a freshman and sophomore. He was second last year. Ford also won the long jump (23-8) and the triple jump (46-4).

Chiawana’s Germain Barnes picked up a win in the 110 hurdles (14.81), then finished third in the 300 hurdles.

“I was really nervous in the prelims,” Barnes said of the 110 event. “After I saw the 14.4 had time, I was pretty excited. This is like practice for state. So many schools and the competition is great. Now, I’m excited for state.”

Kamiakin’s Mirannda Shulman finished third in the 400 (58.97), while teammate Wyatt Musser was third in the boys discus (167-2) and sixth in the shot put (50-8 1/4). The Braves mile relay team picked up a third-place finish.

Just one-hundredth of a second separated College Place’s Kenneth Rooks and Kennewick Johan Correa in the 800 meters. Rooks finished fourth and Correa fifth in a race that saw Jack Ammon of Northwest Christian turn in a time of 1:56.81.

Rooks also was second in the Elite Mile with a time of 4:19.21, 2 second behind Lewiston’s Austin Byrer, who also won the 3,200 (9:17.69).

In the boys javelin, Moses lake’s Draven Nevarez ripped off a throw of 194-7. The throw was a bit off of his personal best, but good enough on a day where three guys threw more than 186 feet.

Kennewick’s Monica Kaylor cleared a personal best 5-3 in the girls high jump to finish second.

“I wasn’t even doing track at this point last season,” Kaylor said. “I was nervous. I literally was having bad dreams about it. I work up at 6 this morning and had the worst anxiety. It took me until the third try to clear 4-10. After I got 5 feet, I was more relaxed. I knew what I was doing.”


Kennewick runner set a national mark at the Pasco Invite
APRIL 15, 2017

Kennewick's Johan Correa won the boys mile and 800-meter race Saturday at the 57th annual Pasco Invite. Kentridge's Tyler Cronk takes down decade's old high jump record.

When Johan Correa stepped on the track at Edgar Brown Stadium on Saturday morning, he had a reputation for being one of the top runners in Washington.

By the end of the day, he had proven he was one of the best in the nation.

The Kennewick junior won the elite mile at the 57th annual Pasco Invite, his time of 4 minutes, 11.04 seconds the fastest high school mark in the nation this spring. Running neck-and-neck with College Place's Kenneth Rooks over the final 200 meters of the race, Correa edged Rooks by a step.

Jericho Cleveland of New Mexico ran a 4:11.22 on March 24.

"I had Kenneth Rooks in the race and I knew I had to push the whole way," Correa said. "I was going all out. This is the first time I have had someone really push me. I am happy with my time."

Correa, who also won the 800 meters and was named the boys MVP of the meet, is the first Mid-Columbia runner to win the elite mile race since Kamiakin's Anthony Armstrong in 2011.

Rooks, who turned in a 4:11.40, said the race was fun.

"We hit the 300 mark and he just kept going," said Rooks, who on Friday signed to run at BYU. "He started out so fast and I was hoping to catch him, but that was not the case. This is a personal best for me."

The Kamiakin boys finished second in the team race with 45 points, well behind winner Rocky Mountain (55). Kennewick (20) finished ninth, and Walla Walla (18) was 10th.

For the girls, Tahoma won the team title with 66 points. Hanford led the Mid-Columbia schools with an eighth-place finish (30). Tahoma's Aliya Wilson was named the MVP of the meet, winning the 100 and 200, and running a leg on winning 4x100 relay.

While Correa led the mile from start to finish, he took his time in showing dominance in the 800.

Lewiston's Sakti Woodbury sprinted out to the lead and held it for the first lap. Correa turned on the jets during the final lap, catching Woodbury with about 300 meters to go, then took off, leaving the rest of the field behindCorrea crossed the finish line in 1:56.46, with Brian Martinez of Tahoma second (1:57.92) and Rooks third (1:58.22). Woodbury finished fifth (1:59.05).

"After the mile, I was ready," Correa said. "I was trying to PR. I was surprised I had enough left to win this race."

Rooks congratulated Correa once again, then admitted he still has work to do.

"I was last at the end of the first lap, Rooks said. "I have to do better on my positioning."

Correa and Rooks also ran legs on their teams' 4x400 relays. Neither placed in the top eight.

In the boys high jump, Tyler Cronk of Kentridge set a meet and stadium record of 7 feet, 3 inches. The previous records of 7-2 1/2 was set in 1985 by Rick Noji of Franklin"It actually felt really good," Cronk said. "I was going for the stadium record and the state record (7-4 1/2).

Cronk, who signed to jump at Saint Martin's University in Lacey earlier this week, opened at 6-4, passed until 6-8, then cleared 6-10, 7 feet and he got 7-3 on his second attempt. He then tried for 7-5, but missed on all three attempts.

"I haven't jumped 7-2 since least year at district," he said. "When everyone started clapping (as he went for 7-5), I didn't really notice, but when all eyes are on you, you have to put on a show. It was fun."

The Mid-Columbia runners continued to perform well the distance races as Kamiakin's Stanford Smith was second in the 1,600 in a time of 4:25.41.

"It's amazing," Smith said. "Everyone here is an amazing competitor. To place second among these guys was awesome. When it got to be about 800 meters left, I started to think there's only half a race left and I put in the final kick."

Kamiakin's Ryan Child was fourth in the 3,200 (9:27.38), while teammate Porter Grigg was eighth (9:31.18).

The boys 110 hurdle race did not disappoint. Hanford's Beau Franklin was third (15.33), Kamiakin's Parker Morgan fourth (15.37) and Walla Walla's Jared McAlvey fifth (15.38). Nate Burch of Coeur d'Alene won the race in 14.66.

"I had a terrible start in the prelims and didn't even know if I made the finals until they called my name," Morgan said. "The lane assignment was not ideal (Lane 10). My goal was to run a good race and beat the guy next to me (he did)."

Franklin said it was a fun race in front of a large crowd.

"I felt pretty good," he said. "I nicked a few, but I finished good. I'm going to guess it's one of my better races."

Burch, who was seventh in the event at the Invite last year, said he had been training for this race all week.

"Every guy out there was talented," he said. "I was happy to beat Zach (Meyer of Rocky Mountain). We compete against each other all the time. He beat me at state last year, but I beat him for the first time in Boise last week, and now today."

Morgan also ran a leg on the Braves' 4x100 relay team that finished third in a time of 43.08. Also on the team was Benson Smith, Colten Chelin and Syl Hunt. Chelin also placed fourth in the 100 meters (11.38).

Cehlin, Smith, Jonah Franco and Cameron Guetierrez combined to finish second in the 4x400 relay in a time of 3:24.85.

Chiawana won the mile relay in a time of 3:24.14, with the team of Cameron Breier, Sisay West, Benny Alferness and Teddy Hunter.

Hanford's Amanda Fraga turned in a third-place finish in the girls 400 meters, clocking a personal best 58.73.

"I'm very happy with my race," she said. "I think I PR'd, so that makes it so much better. With four heats, you have to wait to see how you place, but with my time, I knew I would."

In the girls 800, Kamiakin freshman Hannah Paulsen finished third (2:18.64), while Kennewick's Geraldin Correa-Cambino was fourth (2:19.07). In the 1,600, Walla Walla's Ella Neslon was fifth (5:14.33).

In the girls 100 hurdles, Hanford's Nyenuchi Okemgbo turned in a season-best time of 14.67 to place second. She also was second in the 300 hurdles (44.90), and ran a leg on the 4x400 relay team that placed third (4:01.57).

Kamiakin's Katherine Petsch finished sixth in the 200 (26.11) and the 100 (12:65).

In the field events, Connell's Seer Deines finished second in the shot put with a throw of 52 feet, 3 inches, while Kamiakin's Brock McCue was fifth with a personal best of 51-0 3/4.

Chiawana's Dion Lee was fifth in the triple jump (45-3), while Kamiakin's Brayden Freitag was fifth in the pole vault (14-0), and Pasco's Kyle Bradley was sixth (13-6).

Kennewick's Monica Kaylor placed third in the high jump at 5-4, while Walla Walla's Emma Wenzel was third in the girls javelin (130-1), Skylar Druffel was third in the discus (123-5) and Hally Ruff was eighth in the pole vault (11-0).

Connell's Halli Whitby was fifth in the discus (120-1), while teammate Heather Hawkins was sixth in the shot put (37-5 3/4).


Track athletes turned it up at Pasco Invite
as they close in on state championships

April 14, 2019


The Pasco Invite always seems to mark the time when track and field athletes start to turn things up a notch in preparation for the state championships.

For the Walla Walla boys, however, they’ve been obsessive about it since Day 1 of spring sports.  “Every single day — Jared (McAlvey), Jahmal (Mangarero), myself — all of the guys, we think about it every day,” said Blue Devils senior Patrick Utschinski.

That’s what happens when you lose a state team title by a half-point, like Wa-Hi did last year in Tacoma.“Every inch in the field events, every millisecond in every race, counts,” said Utschinski.

Boy, were the Blue Devils serious Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium at the 58th running of the Pasco Invite.  Wa-Hi won the team title, while Utschinski won the boys shot put (59 feet, 4 inches) and finished second in the discus (155-1).

McAlvey was even better, winning the 300 intermediate hurdles (38.89 seconds) and a leg on the winning distance relay event (10:29.55), and placing second in the 110 high hurdles (14.73).  That earned him the Outstanding Male Athlete of the Meet award.  “Jared is in great shape,” said Wa-Hi coach Eric Hisaw. “He wants to win two state titles on his own, and for us to get a team title this year. This whole group of boys are all in this year.”

Still, neither McAlvey nor Utschinski were satisfied Saturday.   “This was not really my greatest meet,” McAlvey said. “I had a week of tough practices.”   Utschinski, headed to Washington State University in the fall on a football scholarship, agreed.
“I had kind of a rough day in the discus,” he said. “I only threw in the 150s, and that’s very subpar for me. I’m disappointed, but I can learn from it.”  That’s what everyone did on Saturday — learn.


Kamiakin, bolstered by a first-place finish in the boys 4x100 relay team of Neal Berkey, Derek Fischer, Parker Morgan and Syl Hunt, finished second as a team in 43.43 seconds.  The Braves also got a 2-3 finish in the boys pole vault by Brayden Freitag (15-6) and Berkey (14-6), while senior Ryan Child finished second in the boys 3200 at 9:19.79 — losing only to Lewis & Clark’s Wil Smith and his 9:18.47.

“The goal today was not to be fancy,” said Child. “Just hang out for awhile, then take it at (lap) 5.”  Child said even with the early spring snow that forced the Braves’ distance runners inside for heavy treadmill workouts, he feels he’s back on track to peak in Tacoma for state in late May.  “I doubled down in Arcadia in the 1600 and 3200 last week,” said Child, who plans on attending the Air Force Prep Academy in the fall. “Right now, we’re right on pace. I’m so happy with today’s run.”

Just know, there’s a lot of work that still need to be done. “We’re excited where we’re at right now,” said Wa-Hi’s Hisaw. “But we’ve still got six weeks to get where we want to be.”


Tahoma rolls to girls title For the fourth straight year, Tahoma won the girls team title.  On Saturday, the Bears had three athletes win multiple titles, and none of them were named Aliya Wilson.  The Tahoma senior, who was named the Invite’s Outstanding Female Athlete of the Meet in both 2017 and 2018, did not compete because of a quad injury.  But her twin sister, Alisha Wilson, won the long jump (19 feet, 0.5 inches) and triple jump (38-1.75) titles. And teammate Alaina Brady won both hurdles (14.39 seconds in the 100 High’s, and 44-62 in the 300 lows), as well as placing second in the long jump.

But it was sophomore sensation Adaji Osaro-Igwe who was named this year’s Outstanding Female Athlete of the Meet for winning the 100 (12.23), 200 (25.08) and 400 (58.28) meters.  And it wasn’t as if she surprised anyone.  “I went to state in four events last year as a freshman,” Osaro-Igwe said. “This year, I was hoping to win an event (at Pasco) and get a plaque (she did). I feel pretty good. I’ve been consistent with my times.”  Just another weapon for Tahoma, even without Aliyah Wilson right now. “Aliya is so very inspirational to me,” said Osaro-Igwe. “We work so well together in practice.”

The meet’s other multi-winner was Lake Stevens senior Taylor Roe, who doubled to victory in the 1600 (4:58.15) and 800 (2:15.30).   “Any time you double like that it’s hard to get back up (after winning the 1600) and get going (for the 800),” said Roe, who will run cross country and track for Oklahoma State next year. “I knew I needed to get out fast in the 800.”  She lost her 800 lead to Kennewick’s Geraldin Correa-Cambindo and Jesuit’s Molly Grant on the backstretch of the second and final lap. But Roe didn’t panic.  “I just had to be patient,” said Roe. “I told myself ‘I’m in it. You’re fine.’”   She retook the lead on the final stretch to win. Grant was second, while Correa-Cambindo was third.

The area’s best girls performance belonged to Kamiakin senior Katherine Petsch, who placed second in the 100 and 200, and ran a leg on the second-place 4x100 relay team.  “I’m just very thankful to be here,” said Petsch, who will run track next year at Eastern Washington University. “I feel like I’m just doing OK right now. I’m hoping to do better come state.”


Chiawana’s Dion Lee finished second in the boys triple jump.

Kennewick junior Jagger Child’s may have had the most impressive performance of the day. Childs entered the boys javelin with the lowest mark among the 40 competitors at 144-1. But Child’s unleashed a throw of 176-8 to place second.

Connell’s Alma Manzo placed second in the girls triple jump (37-2.75).

Tahoma also took home the combined boys-girls team title and trophy, the Bears’ fourth consecutive year of doing so.

Selah’s boys was named the event’s sportsmanship award winner.

The Invite honored Dale Gier, the former instructor, coach and administrator at CBC who passed away last year. Gier was a long-time volunteer at the Pasco Invite too.

The Invite dedications went to long-time volunteers Dale Lindsay and Willie Taylor.

The Invite also started a Pasco Invitational Hall of Fame this year.

First members are former Pasco High athletes Quenna Beasley and Ron Howard. Beasley was a two-time Invite champion in the girls discus and shot put.  She went on to be an NCAA Track and Field All-American at the University of Oregon. Howard won the triple jump and both hurdles at the Invite.  He went on to play in the NFL for both the Seattle Seahawks and Dallas Cowboys.