No girls’ pole vaulter in the history of Washington state high school track and field accomplished what Squalicum’s Kirsten Webber did Friday, May 15, during the Class 2A Sub-District Meet at Civic Stadium.
Just as the girls’ 100-meter dash completed, about an hour into the meet, an awestruck audience let out a collective roar directed to Civic Stadium’s pole vaulting area in the complex’s northeast corner.
Webber, a senior, already has collected two state championships during her decorated prep career. Now she can add the state’s best to ever pole vault to her resume, at least for now.
After transitioning to a longer pole to help gain more height on her vaults, the move finally paid off with Webber clearing 13 feet, 6.5 inches.
“It’s incredible,” Webber said. “I have been waiting for that. I was hoping it would come a little sooner, but everything I have been working on sort of happened today, so that was a really good feeling because it’s been a long time coming.”
Webber, who will be competing at British Columbia’s Trinity Western next season, had her family and future college coach in attendance. She attempted 13-8 three times after eclipsing 13-6.5 and at least once came close to clearing the bar.
“The longer pole made it seem a lot easier, so it makes me a lot more confident to get higher the next two meets,” Webber said.
Webber’s previous PR was a 13-4 that she set during a Junior Olympics meet this past summer, but her high school season PR was a 13-1. Her and Storm pole vault coach Rod Kammenga posed together for a picture with the hand-operated scoreboard showing 13-06 in the background. Kammenga held a piece of paper with 1/2 written on it next to the scoreboard.
“He was pretty excited,” said Webber of Kammenga. “He took a picture to put on Facebook to show all the other coaches.”
Webber’s performance, for the most part, was the outlier during a meet in which nearly all the track competitors had already punched their ticket to next week’s Class 2A District Meet.
Sehome took a nice first step in what could be another strong postseason for the Mariners, winning both the boys’ and girls’ titles.
The Sehome boys recorded 149 points, Lynden was second with 112.5, Bellingham took third with 110, Sedro-Woolley was fourth with 93 and Burlington-Edison rounded out the top five with 67.5 points.
On the girls’ side, Sehome logged 167.5 points, Squalicum finished second with 116.5, Burlington-Edison took third with 113, Bellingham was fourth with 92 and Blaine came in fifth with 69 points.
The Mariners’ throwers played a large part in the team win. Drew Norvell’s 55-11 put in the shot was a new personal record, and it moved him to No. 6 among the state’s top shot put performances in any classification this spring.
Bellingham’s Jakob Chamberlin won the discus with a throw of 163-03, but Sehome’s throwers took every place from second to seventh.
Bridget Henry (high jump), Chanelle Eddy (discus) and Emily Pittis (1,600, 3,200) each won girls’ events for Sehome.
While Sehome showed its impressive depth, Bellingham flaunted its track speed, especially with Isaiah White’s victories in both the 100 and 200.
The Red Raiders’ senior took first in the 100, with an 11.18, and in the 200, with an 11.30.
“Having a full season is nice,” he said. “This is only my second time having a full season, so that contributes a lot. ... My first two years it was hard to stay on the track, but as soon as I was able to stay on the track, my times started dropping.”
White is hoping to qualify for state in the 100, 200 and 4x100, he said, after only competing in the state meet’s 4x100 last spring.
Hurdler Benjamin Doucette was another Red Raider flashing his speed Friday. He took the first step toward state, after placing third in Class 2A last season, by winning the 110s with a 15.14.
“Last year I only trained during the season,” Doucette said. “This year I trained all year round, so I’m trying to up my expectations a bit and also up my confidence a lot. I know a lot more what I’m capable of.”
For the girls, Mia Hodges won the 400 with a 59.40 and also ran a leg on the Red Raiders’ winning 4x100 and 4x200 relay teams.
Other standouts Friday were Squalicum sprinter Kim Hazlett, who won the 100 and 200, Bellingham’s Annie Waddell, who took first in the 110 hurdles, second in the 300s and ran legs on the team’s winning 4x100 and 4x200 teams and Lynden’s Nick Faber, who won the high jump to go with placing second in the long jump on Wednesday.
Class 2A Sub-District Meet
At Civic Stadium
Team Scores: Sehome 149, Lynden 112.5, Bellingham 110, Sedro-Woolley 93, Burlington-Edison 67.5, Squalicum 52, Anacortes 46, Blaine 30
100: Isaiah White (Bellingham) 11.18; 200: Isaiah White (Bellingham) 11.30; 400: Trent Postma (Lynden) 50.27; 800: Thor Wagoner (Sedro-Woolley) 1:57.11; 1,600: Dylan Holland (Anacortes) 4:25.12; 3,200: Dylan Holland (Anacortes) 9:30.82; 110 hurdles: Benjamin Doucette (Bellingham) 15.14; 300 hurdles: Billy Hornbeck (Sedro-Woolley) 41.28; 4x100: Bellingham (Payton Porter, Cole Allain, Tanner Aliff, Benjamin Doucette) 44:09; 4x400: Lynden (Jordan Thompson, Bryce Sterk, Ean Price, Trent Postma) 3:25:71; Shot put: Drew Norvell (Sehome) 55-11.00; Discus: Jakob Chamberlin (Bellingham) 163-03; Javelin: Drew Wesen (Burlington-Edison) 152-05; High jump: Nick Faber (Lynden) 5-10; Pole vault: Gage Lott (Blaine) 13-00; Long jump: David Roy (Sehome) 20-04.75; Triple jump: Joshua Vail (Squalicum) 42-10.50.
Class 2A Sub-District Meet
At Civic Stadium
Team Scores: Sehome 167.5, Squalicum 116.5, Burlington-Edison 113, Bellingham 92, Blaine 69, Anacortes 60, Lynden 52, Sedro-Woolley 30
100: Kim Hazlett (Squalicum) 12.81; 200: Kim Hazlett (Squalicum) 25.89; 400: Mia Hodges (Bellingham) 59.40; 800: Kate Rose (Sehome) 2:22.37; 1,600: Emily Pittis (Sehome) 5:02.71; 3,200: Emily Pittis (Sehome) 11:10.59; 100 hurdles: Annie Waddell (Bellingham) 16.35; 300 hurdles: Abby Dimock (Burlington-Edison) 46.07; 4x100: Bellingham (Emma Brice, Annie Waddell, Mia Hodges, Hattie North) 49:28; 4x200: Bellingham (Emma Brice, Ilona Iff, Annie Waddell, Mia Hodges) 1:45:14; 4x400: Lynden (Lauren Zwires, Jasmyne Neria, Cassidee Barclay, Lily Bogart) 4:00:17; Shot put: Chanelle Eddy (Sehome) 40-00.75; Discus: Chanelle Eddy (Sehome) 117-07; Javelin: Carly Watson (Burlington-Edison) 108-01; High jump: Bridget Henry (Sehome) 5-04.00; Pole vault: Kirsten Webber (Squalicum) 13-06.50; Long jump: Sara Absten (Burlington-Edison) 17-03.00; Triple jump: Alana Handy (Burlington-Edison) 34-10.50.