Ethan Tonder is the latest Vancouver resident to become a national champion at throwing the javelin.
On Friday in Baltimore, Md., the 14-year-old won the youth boys division javelin competition at the U.S. Track and Field National Junior Olympics Championships.
Tonder’s winning throw was 154 feet and 9 inches, which beat the runner-up by more than two feet. He had the lead entering the finals and improved the mark with his last attempt of the competition.
The victory in the javelin follows a runner-up effort for Tonder on Wednesday in the shot put. His mark in that event was 52 feet, 5 1/2 inches, a personal best and a record for an athlete from the Pacific Northwest Region.
Tonder is the fifth athlete from the Evergreen Storm Track Club to win a national title. This is the fourth year of existence for the club, and the third summer that the Evergreen Storm has sent athletes to the national Junior Olympics meet.
Tonder is entering the eighth grade at Wy’East Middle School. This is his second season throwing with the Storm and working with Scott Halley, a javelin coach at Concordia University in Portland who is a volunteer coach for the Evergreen Storm.
“I’m really excited to be national champion because I’ve been waiting all year for this opportunity and working hard with Scott Halley,” Tonder said after Friday’s victory.
Six boys representing the Storm traveled to the nationals at Morgan State University, four of them in the youth boys division for ages 13-14.
On Thursday, Bailey King took third in the youth boys discus with a mark of 161-9. Also Thursday, Evergreen’s Keaton Spiller finished fourth in the 2,000-meter steeplechase for boys ages 15-16 with a time of 6:43.18.
Also representing the Storm at nationals are Miguel De La Mena and Kyle Gonzales in the 13-14 age division, and Kayden Gonzales in the boys 7-8 age division.