Sunny afternoon perfect for a Mercer Island track meet

It was the perfect afternoon for a track meet on Thursday when Mercer Island hosted Bothell at Islander Stadium. The sun was shining, it was warm, and the teams were out in force.

Mercer Island had a strong showing against Bothell, winning 11 events overall during the meet.

“It was a fantastic day for a track meet,” said head coach Lezley Smith. “A huge change from our first home meet [when it poured rain]. We had tons of personal records, and the kids are starting to understand what competing and racing is all about. The coaches were really excited about how the team performed.”

In the girls competition, Abena Opoku won the 100-meter race in 13.5 seconds, seconds ahead of teammates Cora Miller (second place) and Nicole Walden (third place).

Alisha Waggoner won the 200-meter race in 27.5 seconds, while Mercer Island swept the top three spots in the 3,200 race with Lindsay Benster winning, Molly O’Callahan in second and Gabi Goyette in third. Alfa Hodges won the girls shot-put competition with a throw of 29 feet and 7 inches. Carly Andersen won the javelin throw with a 108-foot, 7-inch toss. She also finished second in the discus. Madeline Oaks was second in the high jump, while Jordan Peralta finished third overall.

The girls 4x100 was just edged out of a win by Bothell in the final seconds of the race. Sophomore Maddison Crothamel, who anchored the Mercer Island team, said she was in the lead until right at the end.

“I was a little ahead, but she got me at the end,” said Crothamel. The team was a relatively new grouping, and Crothamel said she expected they would continue to mix it up as the season went on.

In the boys competition, Nick Sinclair won the 100-meter race in 11 seconds, and Kurtis Rosengreen finished third overall. Sinclair also finished first in the 400-meter race. Aaron Elefson was second in the boys 1,600-meter race, just ahead of Islander Nick Ford. John Hammerstrom was first in the 300-meter hurdles race, while William Clausen finished first in the boys 800-meter race with a time of 2:06.9. Brett Mills finished second for the Islanders, and Colin Strong was third.

Jeff Lindquist was second in the boys 200-meter race, while Elefson nabbed the top spot in the 3,200 race, just ahead of Ford.

In the boys field events Sinclair won the long jump with a leap of 21’7. Jonathan Witz was second in the shot put, while David Kuhn finished third. Reid Jackson was second in the javelin competition and Kennan Adams was third. Jackson also finished third in the boys long jump. David Kolveck finished second in the boys discus competition.

Smith said standouts on Thursday included: Sinclair, Elefson, Waggoner, Miller, Benster and Andersen, while Clausen, Mills and Strong “really push each other and are making great improvements”. Smith also said new members of the team have provided a lot of bright spots so far this season, including: John Hammerstrom, Laura Harrison, Julia Davis, Lauren Ellis and John Witz.

Next Thursday, April 22, the Islanders will travel to Inglemoor High School to take on Roosevelt and Inglemoor in a dual meet. The team will then host Bellevue on April 29.

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