It's always a guessing game when a freshman joins the team. Lynden Christian's track and field coach Kent De Hoog didn't know what to expect from Hannah Rusnak, but her state title in the 100 hurdles is all De Hoog could have asked for of the freshman.
"She did a wonderful job," De Hoog said in a phone interview. "Coming into state, we didn't know what to expect. We knew she had the talent, but to perform at this level on this stage is quite an accomplishment."
What separates Rusnak from other athletes is her unique ability to focus. She is seemingly unphased by her surroundings, De Hoog said.
"For a freshman, that's quite incredible," De Hoog said.
Rusnak took command right from the start, hit the first hurdle in stride and pulled away to run a 15.28, one of her fastest times of the season.
With the guns sounding all day and hundreds of athletes moving everywhere, Rusnak was able to tune that out at the starting line.
"I was really nervous," Rusnak said. "I knew the people standing next to me were really good. I had to pick up my game and do my best."
Being the first to cross the finish line still hasn't sunk in yet for Rusnak.
"I'm kind of in shock," Rusnak said.
The good thing for LC is that Rusnak hasn't hit her peak yet, De Hoog said. The team will experiment with her in different events next season.
For now, though, it appears she'll do just fine in the 100 hurdles.