Lynden sprinter Christian Payne a year ago finished the NWC Championships meet nowhere near earning a podium spot.
He placed ninth in the 100 meter and didn’t run the 200. The 2016 championships proved far more fruitful for the senior.
Payne, acting as an integral part of an impressive Lions sprint and relay group, swept the 100 and 200 while helping Lynden’s 4x100 relay team earn a title during a cold, rainy NWC Championships meet Friday, April 22, at Civic Stadium.
“This meet, it’s all just been building up building up,” Payne said. “Everyone is kind of improving and building off each other. At practice we push each other hard.”
Payne won with a time of 11.33 seconds in the 100 and posted a winning time of 23.72 in the 200.
The Lions’ 4x400 team also won a title, and with high jumper Aaron Weidenaar’s top placing in the high jump, Lynden’s boys’ team came away with a second place team finish with 89.5 points.
“That was my coach’s main thing, is he believed we have a lot of potential this year, even possibly getting top five in state,” Payne said.
Sehome, although oddly enough didn’t win a single boys or girls event, showcased its depth by winning a team title on the boys’ side with 127 points and placing second on the girls’ side with 73 points. Burlington-Edison won the girls’ team title with 104 points.
Joining Payne as a multiple winner was Lynden Christian star sprinter/hurdler Hannah Rusnak and Mount Baker’s middle distance runner Natalie Smith.
Rusnak won the 100 with a time of 12.52 seconds, the 100 hurdles with a new meet-record time of 14.65 and ran a leg on LC’s winning 4x1 relay team.
Smith won the 800 with a time of 2:22.23 and added a title in the 1,600 (5:14.78) by holding off Nooksack Valley standout Amy Jo Murphy.
Bellingham hurdler Benjamin Doucette offered an impressive performance in the 300 hurdles by nearly setting a meet record. He ran new personal best of 40.24 to claim the event’s first-place medal.
Nooksack Valley thrower Colton Kautz and Bellingham thrower Jakob Chamberlin enjoyed strong meets. Kautz earned a pair of PRs in the shot put and discus. His 51-foot, 10-inch put earned him an event title, and although the junior settled for second in the discus, his 166-03 throw set a new school record.
“It was a good day,” Kautz said. “I came out here and thought it was going to rain and have a bad day, and I ended up having on solid throw in the shotput, took first, and had one solid throw in discus and got the school record.”
Chamberlin claimed the discus title with new personal record throw of 187-10, which easily eclipsed the old meet record of 169-9.
At Civic Stadium
Team scores: Sehome 127, Lynden 89.5, Bellingham 72, Burlington-Edison 65.5, Meridian 53.5, Nooksack Valley 52, Blaine 51, Sedro-Woolley 45, Ferndale 32.5, Anacortes 31, Lynden Christian 22, Squalicum 15, Mount Baker 7
100: Christian Payne (Lynden) 11.33; 200: Christian Payne (Lynden) 23.72; 400: Stephen Cummins (Lynden Christian) 52.29; 800: Thor Wagoner (Sedro-Woolley) 1:57.46; 1,600: Dyland Holland (Anacortes) 4:19.30; 3,200: Roberto Aguilera (Ferndale) 9:56.11; 110 hurdles: Marcus McGuinn (Meridian) 15.43; 300 hurdles: Benjamin Doucette (Bellingham) 40.24; 4x100: Lynden (Travis Marquez, Grant Scarlett, Brandon Swarthout, Christian Payne) 43:27; 4x400: Lynden (Jacob Heeringa, Grant Scarlett, Tate Hutchins, Brandon Swarthout) 3:31:64; Shot put: Colton Kautz (Nooksack Valley) 51-10; Discus: Jakob Chamberlin (Bellingham) 187-10; Javelin: Ben Broselle (Ferndale) 173-0; High jump: Aaron Weidenaar (Lynden) 6-2; Pole vault: Austin Cartwright (Sedro-Woolley) 13-0; Long jump: Taran Lambert (Burlington-Edison) 20-5.75; Triple jump: Connor Beard (Nooksack Valley) 42-0.
At Civic Stadium
Team scores: Burlington-Edison 104, Sehome 73, Meridian 72.5, Nooksack Valley 71, Lynden Christian 67, Squalicum 58, Ferndale 51.5, Lynden 49, Bellingham 49, Anacortes 47, Mount Baker 35, Sedro-Woolley 18, Blaine 7
100: Hannah Rusnak (Lynden Christian) 12.52; 200: Payton Lunde (Meridian) 27.35; 400: Jasmyne Neria (Lynden) 59.92; 800: Natalie Smith (Mount Baker) 2:22.23; 1,600: Natalie Smith (Mount Baker) 5:14.78; 3,200: Sarah Ball (Lynden Christian) 11:20.42; 100 hurdles: Hannah Rusnak (Lynden Christian) 14.65; 300 hurdles: Abby Dimock (Burlington-Edison) 46.96; 4x100: Lynden Christian (Brandy Bruneau, Brianna Bruneau, Libby Hielkema, Hannah Rusnak) 50:89; 4x200: Lynden (Lauren Zwires, Sierra Smith, Cassidee Barclay, Jasmyne Neria) 1:47:03; 4x400: Lynden (Sierra Smith, Jasymne Neria, Cassidee Barclay, Lauren Zwires) 4:10:98; Shot put: Grace Himango (Nooksack Valley) 35-1; Discus: Gabrielle Edison (Ferndale) 120-11; Javelin: Sydney Gospodinovich (Meridian) 110-11; High jump: Sara Absten (Burlington-Edison) 5-6; Pole vault: Katherine Dunford (Mount Baker) 10-6; Long jump: Megan Wilburg (Burlington-Edison) 16-7.50; Triple jump: Alana Handy (Burlington-Edison) 34-2.5.