Evergreen Storm track shines at Pacific Northwest Junior Olympics

More than 60 local athletes qualify for regional meet

By Paul Danzer, Columbian community sports reporter

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Highlighted by a record for western Washington, the Evergreen Storm Track Team won 53 medals during the Pacific Northwest Association Junior Olympics Track and Field Championships.

Trey Knight's winning discus throw of 139 feet, 3 inches was a Pacific Northwest Association record for boys in the 11-12 age division. His throw was 6 feet farther than the previous association record.

The meet, held Friday through Sunday at Kent Meridian High School, included athletes from around western Washington competing for spots in the regional meet. The Evergreen Storm Track Team includes athletes from around Clark County.

More than 60 Storm athletes qualified for regionals by placing among the top eight in their events. The regional competition will be held July 3-6 at Central Valley High School in Spokane. Those who place among the top five at the regional meet qualify for the USA Track and Field Junior Olympics National Championships, which will be held July 21-27 in Houston.

More than 80 athletes from the Vancouver area represented the Evergreen Storm at the association meet.

In addition to his record mark in the discus, Knight won the shot put for boys 11-12 with a mark of 48-¾.

Storm throwers Ethan Tonder and Bailey King dominated in the boys 15-16 age group. Tonder won the shot put (53-1¾) and the javelin (161-3). King won the discus (164-0) and hammer throw (128-3).

Another standout performance for the Storm was Savannah Craig's winning time of 7 minutes, 15.29 seconds in the girls 15-16 2,000-meter steeplechase.

Keaton Spiller won two races for boys 17-18, taking the 1,500 (4:13.87) and the 800 (1:55.9).

In the boys 13-14 competition, Chibuike Eke won the high jump (5-3) and Victor Naumov won the discus (105-3). Also, the Storm team of Kyle Cooper, Justin Cibart, Mason Gross and Gabe Dinnel won the 3,200 relay (9:57.65).

In the girls 13-14 age group, Emily Wilson won the 3,000 (10:52.6), Madison Peffers won the high jump (4-9) and Jaelyn Tonder won the javelin (74-4). Also, the 3,200 relay Storm team of Wilson, Presley Timmons, Rachel Blair and Brooklyn Jackson won (10:20.10).

In the girls 17-18 division, Regyn Gaffney won the 100-meter dash (12.43) and anchored the winning 400-meter relay team with Chisom Eke, Natalie Davies and Tamaki Murata (49.67).

The Storm also won the 3,200 relay for girls ages 11-12. Olivia Dinnel, Drew Lobis, Hailee Parman and Sydnee Dyer finished in 12:09.3.

Flanagan Clan Girls Track Club — Jenna Melanson won the 400-meter hurdles in the 15-16 age division to highlight Flanagan Clan Girls Track Club results at the Pacific Northwest Association championships. Her time was 1:10.21. She also placed second in the 100 hurdles (17.67) and in the 2,000-meter steeplechase with a Clan age-group record time of 8:05.24.

Complete results for the Woodland-based club from the meet in Kent are in the Community Sports Scoreboard.

Hershey state meet Saturday — The Hershey's Track and Field Program Washington State Meet will take place on Saturday at McKenzie Stadium. Competition begins at 10:30 a.m. and is scheduled to end at 5 p.m.

Participants, who qualified at local Hershey's meets around Washington, will be competing for a possible trip to Pennsylvania for the Hershey's Track and Field Championships. Several Washington champions will be selected for the championships based upon their results at this state meet.