Five Falcon athletes place at state championships

Falcon Laura Barrow medaled in eighth-place in the 300-meter hurdles during state finals at Mount Tahoma High School on Saturday. - Jon Poolman
Falcon Laura Barrow medaled in eighth-place in the 300-meter hurdles during state finals at Mount Tahoma High School on Saturday.
— image credit: Jon Poolman

South Whidbey High School jumper Cayla Calderwood and hurdler Laura Barrow medaled in state championship track-and-field events at Mount Tahoma High School.

In Tacoma on Friday, Calderwood placed third in the 2A girls triple jump with 35.2 feet. Brandi Thomas of Elma was first with 37-2 and Sarah Schireman of Archbishop Murphy second with 36-5.

“It was hot down in Tacoma,” Calderwood said. “The high jumps were first, so there was a lot of standing around before the triple began. I’m capable of going at least a foot farther. There’s always next year, and I will be back.”

Placing eighth in the 300-meter high hurdles in a time of 58.73 was a personal triumph for Barrow; she is in her 12th year of remission after a bout with leukemia when she was 2.

“I was glad to move forward after the first day, since they pick the top eight runners,” Barrow said. “I really can’t explain why

I like them; hurdles seemed like fun back in middle school so I stuck with it.”

Barrow, too, plans to return to state finals next year.

Three other South Whidbey athletes competed at the state championships.

Falcon Andy Bennett placed 12th in the long jump with 20-6.5. Nikki Enters was 10th in discus with a throw of 102.3 feet and put her shot 30-9, good for 14th. Kelsey Engstrom was 16th in shotput with 28-11.5.

While acknowledging that injuries during the season hurt both the boys and girls teams, Falcon coach Doug Fulton said true champions will work through the pain.

“Andy’s been battling a knee sprain for five weeks, and Cayla spent much of the winter in a neck brace,” Fulton said. “These are really great kids.”

“It was a terrific weekend of competition and the kids all performed well,” he added. “Assistant coaches Mark Eager and Jeff Greene were on hand to provide guidance and support, as well as volunteers Dean Hatt and Craig Stelling.”

Jeff VanDerford can be reached at 221-5300 or

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