Track athletes set personal records

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Gage Lott clears the bar while pole vaulting earlier this season. Lott finished 13th overall in the state track meet last week. Photo by Ian Ferguson

The Borderite track and field team pulled out all the stops for their trip to state, turning in some of their best performances of the season.

The Blaine 2A Northwest Division track team closed out a stellar season at the state meet in Tacoma on May 28–30. Seven Blaine athletes made the trip to state. Seniors Gage Lott, Jon Fakkema, Hillary Kiele, Taylor V’Dovec, Elle Moore, Olivia Adams and Alex Gehringer qualified to compete on the strength of their performances at a two-day meet at Civic Stadium in Bellingham May 20–22.

“I’m very pleased with the performance of our track athletes,” said head coach Carey Bacon. “We took seven athletes with a chance of eight medaling, and we took home six medals.”

The Blaine girls made an especially strong showing at the  meet. The girls team placed ninth overall, the third-best showing in Whatcom County, following Sehome High School in second place and Bellingham High School in fifth.

Kiele placed second in the 800-meter with a time of 2:19.04. She finished within one second of the winner, Heather Hanson of Anacortes, and nearly broke her own school record. V’Dovec placed third in girls high jump, hitting 5 ,feet 4 inches. Bacon said the jump was her best of the season.

In pole vaulting, Adams fell just short of her personal best, hitting 11 feet 9 inches and taking fourth place.

Moore hit a PR in the discus competition. Her throw of 112 feet, 9 inches was a full 2.5 feet more than her previous best. Moore placed fourth overall. Moore also placed seventh in the shot put competition with a throw of 35 feet.

Fakkema finished eighth in the shot put competition with a season-best throw of 50 feet, 10.75 inches. He had previously set a PR at the May 21 meet in Bellingham, making a throw of 10 feet, 1 inch.

Hillary Kiele charges the finish line during practice earlier this season. Kiele finished second overall in the 800-meter at the state meet in Tacoma.  Photo by Ian Ferguson

Hillary Kiele charges the finish line during practice earlier this season. Kiele finished second overall in the 800-meter at the state meet in Tacoma.
Photo by Ian Ferguson

Gehringer and Lott each hit 13-foot jumps in the pole vault competition. Gehringer took 10th and Lott took 13th. Gehringer pulled ahead because he made earlier heights with fewer misses than Lott.

“They thought they should have done better, but I was impressed with their efforts,” Bacon said.

For all seven athletes, this meet closes out their high school track careers. Bacon called this class the best he’s ever had.

“We had a phenomenal senior class this year, the best in my 16 years as coach,” he said. “They were leaders, inspirers, organizers and finishers. It was no accident that this group made it to state and did well. We will most definitely miss them next year.”

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