Cheers and tears filled Shoreline Stadium Friday night as the District 1 3A Track and Field Championships concluded after two days of fierce competition; the Mountlake Terrace girls squad finished tied for second in the district team standings and qualified nine individuals for the state championships to be held in Tacoma next week.
The Arlington Eagles, who placed fifth at the state 4A meet last year, won the girls team title; Arlington dropped down to the 3A classification this school year and is expected to challenge for the 3A girls state championship next week.
Leading the Mountlake Terrace girls was junior Chinne Okoronkwo who captured three individual district titles; after picking up the girls long jump title on Wednesday, Okoronkwo won the girls triple jump and pole vault events on Friday.
Okoronkwo had also won all three events as a sophomore at last year’s District 1 meet.
Okoronkwo’s defense of her three district titles may not have surprised many, but was accomplished despite some misalignment in her hips that has restricted her training some this spring. “We don’t know how it got that way, but we think it’s been that way for a little way,” she said.
The junior has had to change her approach to the jumping events, even switching her take-off foot in the triple jump. The modification didn’t hurt her results though; Okoronkwo only needed one effort in the triple jump to best the field by almost three-and-a-half feet on Friday.
In the pole vault, after second place Annika Dayton couldn’t clear 11-09.00, Okoronkwo passed at that height and went straight to 12-00.00, where she cleared it easily in one try. Okoronkwo then tried to set a new District 1 girls pole vault meet record at 12-07.00, but missed on three attempts.
Okoronkwo, the defending 3A state girls long jump and triple jump champion, is looking to adding a pole vault championship at the state meet next week. “I think it would be really nice to get one because I’ve been second for the past two years,” she said. “I really want to have a triple title: get the long (jump), pole (vault) and triple jump. That would be really special.”
Okoronkwo wasn’t the only Hawk to win a district championship on Friday: Terrace’s Hailee Malins grabbed a title in the girls shot put. Malins toss of 38-02.50 slipped past second place Justean Landis of Arlington by just one-and-a-quarter inches.
Malins will be heading to the State Track and Field Championships in the shot put and the discus, an event she finished second in at the district meet on Wednesday.
Malins’ coach Dave Brophy credited the junior’s hard work ethic for her win in the shot put, to the point of heading back to the school after Wednesday’s first day of competition at the district meet to do some throwing practice in preparation for Friday’s shot put event.
“That’s why she’s the district champ and not just the district disappointment,” Brophy said.
Other Hawks who will be heading to the state track and field championships next week include senior Alisha Clingan in the javelin, senior McKenna Hunt in the 100 meter hurdles, sophomore Jessica Ong in the 800 meters, and the 4 by 200 relay team of Tayler McCulloch, Sophia Parsons, Julia Hart and Isabel Kembel, a team made up of three freshmen and a sophomore.
On the boys’ side, only junior Michael Liddell qualified for the state meet from Mountlake Terrace; Liddell finished second in the long jump at the district meet to earn his ticket to state.
To view all the results from the 3A District 1 Track and Field Championships, click https://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/MeetResults.aspx?Meet=231140#483.
– By Doug Petrowski
Prep Track: Mountlake Terrace at 3A District 1 Track and Field Championships, May 20-22
Girls Team Scores:
1. Arlington 141
2. Mountlake Terrace 103
3. Glacier Peak 103
4. Lynnwood 84
5. Stanwood 52
6. Oak Harbor 47
7. Edmonds-Woodway 38
8. Marysville-Pilchuck 36
9. Shorewood 30
10. Marysville-Getchell 21
11. Ferndale 19
12. Meadowdale 14
13. Everett 12
Boys Team Scores:
1. Arlington 106
2. Glacier Peak 82
3. Shorewood 70
4. Marysville-Getchell 60
5. Edmonds-Woodway 57
6. Oak Harbor 52
7. Ferndale 44
8. Meadowdale 42.5
9. Everett 40
10. Lynnwood 36
11. Marysville-Pilchuck 29
12. Stanwood 22.5
13. Mountlake Terrace 19
Mountlake Terrace next meet: at State Track and Field Championships, May 28-30, Mount Tahoma High School in Tacoma