Freshman Parker highlights busy weekend at state track finals


Blaine track and field sent 10 athletes to the 1B/2B/1A State Championships at Zaepfel Stadium in Yakima over Memorial Day weekend, and despite no Borderites leaving with any hardware, a few sprinters and throwers capped off their seasons with solid performances.

Assistant coach Roberto Aguilera said while the final results may not have been what the team wanted, doubling the state representation for Blaine from last year’s team means a lot for this young program.

“I was ecstatic for them. I was so joyful to see them make it to state,” Aguilera said. “I know they had worked hard enough to get to where they were, and that’s all that matters from a coach’s end.”

Freshman Cheyenne Parker came the closest to a state championship, finishing second in the girls 200-meter preliminary round with a time of 26.03, and finishing first in her heat.

In the 200-meter final on May 25, Parker finished fourth with a time of 26.29, just a few fractions of a second shy of second place.

Parker was one of just two freshmen in the 1A 200-meter final, a fact Aguilera said is a testament to Parker’s raw potential as a sprinter.

“[Parker] has been performing incredibly, especially up with Washington’s best sprinters,” Aguilera said. “We have had a lot of educational prep talks about the sport to educate her, as well as the other freshman, to understand what it takes to be a part of Washington’s 1A best. That includes working on their biomechanics and confidence to hopefully one day be Washington’s 1A top sprinter representing Blaine.”

Her competition in the heat, Bear Creek senior Braelyn Baker, holds multiple state 1A meet records for the 100- and 200-meter dashes and the 300 hurdles. Baker, who committed to sprint at Duke University, ran another stellar 200-meter, beating the field by nearly 2.5 seconds.

On May 24, the boys 4x100-meter relay team raced in its preliminary heat, but weren’t able to qualify for a top-eight time and make it to the final round. Jaiden Paez, Dylan Johnson, Justin Minjarez and Beckum Bleazard ran a time of 49.98.

The boys 4x100-meter relay was a tough field, with Northwest Conference rivals Meridian and Lynden Christian advancing to the finals, and Meridian winning the 1A final with a time of 43.44.

Minjarez was the only Blaine senior to qualify for the state championship, but Aguilera said that the entire cohort of seniors on the track team set a great example all season, even if only one of them was able to make it to Yakima for state.

“They’re all amazing athletes,” Aguilera said of the outgoing senior class. “And they’re also incredible role models. I wish them the best for whatever they plan on doing in the future.”

Later that day, the girls 4x100-meter relay team competed in its preliminary heat, with Parker, Brietta Sandell, Kaitlyn Ritter Von Trautmann and Juliana Zuzarte combining for a solid time of 51.75.

The relay team’s time was a full .75 seconds slower than their 1A District Championship time, and the team missed the eighth and final qualification spot by less than .25 seconds.

As well, the eight-team heat the Borderites competed in was unforgiving, with five teams qualifying for the final heat. Blaine, unfortunately, was that sixth team to finish, just missing out on a spot in the final.

The sophomore Sandell was the Borderites’ lone hurdler to compete at state, racing in the 100-meter hurdles along with the second position on the relay team. Sandell ran a time of 17.41 in the preliminary round, missing out on qualification for the final heat.

Freshman Teia Dube competed in the girls 1A high jump with a 4’6”, tying for 16th.

Junior Jayden Winslow, the only Borderite to qualify for the state championship in a throwing event in shot put, finished his year with a 41’4.75” shot put, earning him 15th.

Blaine track and field has a promising group of talented underclassmen that can make it back to state with a year of experience now under their belts.

Head coach Mark Schultz announced his resignation after the state tournament, leaving a vacancy for who will lead Blaine track and field next season.


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