Track jamboree brings surprises

Though the day threatened early with wind, rain and power outages, Thursday afternoon could not have been any better for a track meet. This track meet.

Though still in their preseason training period, the boys and girls track teams at South Whidbey High School came out ready to run at an informal jamboree meet with Jackson, Oak Harbor and Lakewood. In fact, they were more than ready to run — and jump and throw — as a number of competitors hit marks in the season’s first meet nearly as good as those they’d hit in their previous track seasons.

Making the day truly glorious were the milers on boys and girls teams, with come-from-behind finishes that are typically out of place in the first meet of the season. In the boys 1,600-meter run, senior James Sundquist moved from sixth place on the final lap of his race into third with a kick that gave him one of his best mile times ever, 4 minutes, 36.5 seconds.

In the girls race, freshman Kelsey Kimmel made a memorable debut. Running as far back as fourth at times, Kimmel turned the fourth and final lap of her race into a quarter-mile dash, sprinting past everyone in front of her to just lose at the line to a Jackson runner who had started the lap more than 15 yards in the lead.

Elsewhere, shorter distance and field athletes were putting up good numbers. In the high jump, senior Kyle McGillen tied his all-time best best mark of 6 feet, 4 inches — the same height he hit to place in the state 2A track meet last May.

In the 100- and 200-meter dashes, a formidable brother pairing showed up as senior Nick Plastino and freshman Marco Plastino placed first and fourth in the shorter event and first and third in the longer. On the girls side in the 100, Brittany Peterson was the top Falcon finisher in third with a 14.3-second dash, while her 4x100 relay teammate Nicole Mock was a 28.9-second runner up in the 200.

Sophomore Katherine East, the team’s top 400 runner for the past year, did not fail to impress the competition, taking a 63.6-second victory in her favored event.

On the field for the Falcons, senior Katy McGillen grabbed two event wins as she took the javelin and the high jump, an event in which she earned a state championship last season.

Also giving a strong performance on the field was junior Kimery Hern. In the discus, her 117-6 toss was not only enough to win, but it put her 33 feet out ahead of her closest competition. Hern also placed second in the shot put, behind senior teammate Jordan Tobler.

Other top performers on the day included JD Peters, Nancy Godsey, and Katy Gordon in the 1,600. Peters was also a third-place finisher in the 800 meters. Paul Eining was a runner up in the boys javelin filling in for 2003 state runner-up Travis Tornga.

The Falcons compete at Waterman Field on Thursday. Events start at 3:45 p.m. The meet will be the second of four at home.

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