Blaine track return to defend state track title

Published on Wed, May 26, 2010 by Stories and Photo By Jerry Huls

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Surprise, disappointment and high drama were the words of the day at the Northwest District 2A track and field tournament held in Sultan May 22.

Cherish Morrison and Robin Taylor lead a small but seasoned contingent to Mt. Tahoma high school next week, to defend their 2A state championship. Blaine finished third overall in the girls meet.

Morrison won the 100, 200 and 400m sprints as well as leading the Borderites 4x200 team to a dramatic come from behind win. After setting meet records with 12:33 in the 100 and 56:88 in the 400, Morrison needed an electric finish to  help win the 4x200 relay. With less than 50 meters in the race, Morrison made her move on Sehome anchor Jori Hall, who as she strived to lean out towards the finish, lost her balance and crashed violently to the track as Morrison crossed the finish in a time of 1:45.62. Hall, who suffered abrasions on both knees and on her left shoulder, picked herself up and weakly crossed the line, but was disqualified because she forgot to pick up her fallen baton.

“I saw Cherish coming up on me,” explained Hall, “and I tried to go hard, tried to lean forward and went too far.”
Kiersten Sigfusson rebounded from a below par sub-district tournament to take third in the 200 and second in the 400 to qualify for a total of three events at state next week.

Senior Robin Taylor returns to state as the prohibitive favorite to win her third consecutive state title in the pole vault. She won the district title over Squalicum rival Cheyenna Pinley with a jump of 11-0.

Penina Laolagi stunned the area shot putters by winning the event on her second throw of 34.04, a personal record for her.

“It feels amazing,” gushed Laolagi, “especially after not qualifying for discus Wednesday. Today my speed was good, my head was up and I had good explosion.” Her winning throw was nearly 10 inches over her previous personal record.

On the boy’s side, Laolagi’s older brother, Tusapa, punched a ticket to the state tournament with his own personal best in the high jump of 6-0 to finish in a tie for second.

“This is way different than football,” the elder Laolagi said when comparing the trips to state, “This is individual and you can see what you personally accomplished.”

Also qualifying for state was Caleb Statham who finished fourth in the 100, Tucker Morgan, who finished fourth in the long jump and Tom Bradley who qualified by time in the 3200 meter run.