A special Friday night in Washougal sets the stage for an even better today for the Panther track and field teams. They could both be coming home from Longview as the league champions.
“That would be a very good ending to our regular season,” said head coach Dave Hajek. “Winning league is a goal, but it is not the only goal these kids have. It would definitely be something nice for both teams to achieve, but if it doesn’t happen it’s not the end of the world. Just to have the opportunity for both teams to be in that spot is pretty good.”
The Washougal teams increased their potential by performing well for their hometown in the Panther Invitational Friday, at Fishback Stadium. The Washougal girls leaped over Mark Morris by 25 points, as well as six other schools, for the first-place trophy. The Panther boys rose up to second place, and finished just 10 points shy of Mark Morris.
“I am extremly proud,” said senior Katie Wright. “We really feel like a family. There’s been so many good times these past four years.”
If the Washougal girls can beat Mark Morris today, it would be for their fourth straight league title.
“Not too many Washougal athletes have been able to say they were league champions all four years in high school,” Hajek said. “It would be quite an accomplishment for this group of girls.”
Both Wright and Joe Harris had a field day for the Panthers Friday. Wright won the high jump with an elevation of 5 feet, 2 inches. She also took second in the long jump (16-2.5) and as a member of the 400-meter relay team (53.25 seconds). Harris grabbed second in the 110 hurdles (16.29), high jump (5-8.25) and the discus (136-9). He also placed sixth in the triple jump (37-4).
Michelle Greear gained first place for the girls in the discus (96-7) and shot put (34 feet).
“I used to watch my sister throw the discus and the shot put all the time,” Greear said. “It’s pretty awesome to be able to win both events at home.”
Kari Johnson clinched first in the 100 hurdles (17.36), second as a member of the 400 (53.25) and 800 (1:52.5) relay teams, and fourth in the 300 hurdles (53.35). Twin sister Kaitlyn joined Kari on the relay teams. She also took second in the triple jump (32-8.75) and third in the 100 dash (12.99). Mackenzie Pfeifer placed second in the javelin (99-9), Kayla Lockard leaped to third on the pole vault (9 feet) and Karina Miller finished fourth in the 1,600 (5:44.7).
Isaac Sthinchfield snagged first for the boys in the 1,600 (4:37.9) and Sean Eustis earned first in the 800 (2:00.5). Nathan Milojevic notched second on the pole vault (13 feet) and third in the javelin (141 feet). Isaac Bischoff grabbed second in the shot put (47-1) and fourth in the discus (129-11).