Emily Sharp sets new Juneau-Douglas record

Thunder Mountain sets 16 personal bests in third meet ever

Posted: Monday, April 26, 2010

It was a record-breaking day at the Skyview Invite for Juneau-Douglas junior trackster Emily Sharp, who set a school record in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.45. The previous mark was 15.50 set in 1983.

Sharp wasn't the only successful Bear during the meet in Soldotna.

Senior Annette Highley posted yet another personal record at Skyview, the place where she had previously set a personal record last year. This year, Highley set a distance of 33-03.25 in the shot put.

In the 200, three out of four girls competing for the Crimson Bears set personal records.

Sophomore Karissa Jackson, senior Iris Neary and sophomore Jean Cumlat set times of 29.94, 30.53 and 30.81, respectively.

"Nani Ostrom decided to come out this year, and she's looking very strong in the 400," said coach Janette Gagnon. "She'll also help us to have a strong (4x400-meter relay)."

On the boys' side, Gagnon said Zachary Bursell had a strong weekend.

"He won the 2-mile on Friday and got third in the mile," Gagnon said. "Shadd Rudick has been inching up most of his times each week.

"He didn't get a (personal record) this week, but he's right there," she continued. "Being so young, he's showing some potential for years to come."

Gagnon said although the team was short-handed, she was happy with her team's performance.

"It's always a long weekend because we fly into Anchorage and drive three hours down to the meet in the morning," she said. "Luckily, the weather was nice because last year it was snowing on us."

The Bears hope to find nice weather next weekend as they travel down the road to participate in the Thunder Mountain Invitational at Thunder Mountain High School.

Thunder Mountain continues to make progress

The Thunder Mountain track team returned from Anchorage after posting several personal records over the weekend at the Skyview Invite in Soldotna.

The team was short-handed due to events in town that many of the athletes were involved in, but the Falcons represented their school well.

Only 16 kids, one of which was a senior, were able to make it on the trip for the Falcons. In the team's third meet of its first-ever season, the group was able to set 16 personal records on Friday and Saturday.

"We're a young group, and we had a lot of our kids involved with the (Region V Southeast Music Festival) that couldn't make it," said Falcons coach Scott May. "The great thing was the fact that we set all those (personal records), which is great for our squad."

Of note, freshman James Steeves set two personal best marks in the 3,200- and 1,600-meter runs with times of 11:18.69 and 5:22.42, respectively.

Freshman Gerald Gardner, one of the Falcons' thowers, set a personal best in both the shot put and discus with distances of 23-04.25 and 60-10, respectively.

On the boys' side, May said the athlete of the week was sophomore Devin Womac in the 200-meter dash and 300-meter hurdles. He set a time of 28.17 in the 200 and a time of 52.38 in the hurdles.

"Our focus this year is improving every time we go out," May said. "These guys have been doing a great job of that."

Out of the five girls that went to the meet for Thunder Mountain, there were six personal records set.

May said the athlete of the meet on the girls' side was junior captain Rhyan Holmes. She set a season best in the 1,600 with a time of 7:12.24.

"She has improved her season best each time she's run this year, so she keeps dropping it down," May said. "She was just a great leader on this trip."

Also on the girls' side, junior Sydney Thorne was the only Falcons runner to make it to the finals of any event. May said that by itself was difficult, given the size of the meet, which had 22 teams in competition. Thorne ran a time of 14.29 in the finals of the 100-meter dash. She also set a personal record in the long jump with a distance of 12-11.50.

Amanda Gardner and Amanda Gile also set PRs for the Falons in the long jump and triple jump, respectively.

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