TACOMA— The Walla Walla High School Track and Field team sent eight boys and six girls to compete at the State Championships this past weekend at Mt. Tahoma High School.
On the boys side, Wa-Hi was crowned state champions as a team for the first time since 1959 with a team score of 50 points beating out Tahoma, Camas and Federal way.
The girls finished sixth with a team score of 30.5 finishing behind Hanford by a half a point.
Tahoma took the state title with a team score of 98.5, second place was Lake Stevens with a team score of 45.
This was the first time since 1984 that the Wa-Hi girls team had placed at state.
Jared McAlvey won the 300 hurdles and broke the school record in doing so with a time of 37.43 seconds, he had already broke the record in prelims with 37.53 seconds.
McAlvey also placed fifth in the 110 meter hurdles with a time of 14.84, and then was part of the 4x100 relay team along with Haden Wegner, Ryan Moore and Brady Kinney placed fifth with a time of 42.99.
Patrick Utschinski became a state champion in discus after throwing 180 feet one inch.
The Wa-Hi senior also placed second in shot put with a throw of 59 feet 10 inches.
On the girls side, Noelani Helm placed fifth in the javelin with a throw of 132 feet one inch and placed third in High Jump
The 4x400 relay of Sariah Hepworth, Ella Nelson, Jennifer Huntsman and Madi Knight placed seventh with a time of 4:05.48. Knight also placed seventh in the 300 hurdles with a time of 47.11 seconds.
“This is the first time in school history where we had both boys and girls place in the top eight at the state meet,” said Wa-Hi coach Eric Hisaw.
“As proud as I am of the boys I am equally proud of the girls because of how they fought through the weather, how mentally tough they were and how they supported each other throughout the meet.”
“On the guys side we talked about how to handle themselves on the bus ride and in the hotel, we talked about being mentally focused and we had no problems. I was so happy with how they came out ready to go,” added Hisaw.
“In Javelin, Dash Sirmon who was our Freshman place sixth with a throw of 177-03 and then Jahmal (Mangarero) who was sitting at tenth going in to his last throw and then has the throw of his life and PRs with a throw of 187-11 and finishes fourth.”
“All weekend we had people step up and out do the guy before them and that is how you win a state title, by pushing your limits further and further and just being mentally strong and that’s what we had all meet on both sides.”
“For the girls, Madi Knight is one of the best leaders I have had since I’ve been here and I couldn’t be more proud of her. I was very impressed with Ella Nelson, for her to place second in the 1600 meters and then comeback and run the 3200 and the 4x4 just shows how mentally strong she is and it will be nice having her back next year since she’s only a Sophomore.”
“The Big Blue Train was rolling today and you either get on or get rolled over and today was just a great day to be a Blue Devil. I’m just so proud of the love and support that everyone has for one another on this team and proud of the hard work the coaches and kids put in all year and it all paid off in the end,” concluded Hisaw.