Sehome’s Johnson wins ‘unexpected’ state title

Sehome’s Abby Johnson wasn’t expecting to win a state title in the mile but when the race started at her favorite pace, everything lined up just right.

“It ended up being my ideal race situation,” Johnson said. “It started slow and I tend to rely on my kick.”

The senior ran the 1600-meter final in 5 minutes, 7.5 seconds to take home a state title during the Class 2A State Championships on Thursday, May 26, at Mount Tahoma. She was a full two seconds ahead of the second place finisher, Brittany Aquino (5:09.14) of East Valley-Spokane.

Johnson was hanging around third place heading into the final lap and the turned on the afterburners to propel herself to the finish line. Coach Kevin Ryan said he was surprised at how fast she was running at the end of the race.

“We basically told her its a three-lap race and to just be there through three laps,” Ryan said. “She ran a smart race due to all the race situations she’s been in this year.”

Johnson said as she was heading toward the finish line she was thinking, “This is my chance to show what I’ve worked for.”