Speed wins. And sets records.
At the end of this year’s state track and field meet, seven state sprint records (individual events or relays) were set at Mt. Tahoma Stadium.
And Tahoma sophomore Aliya Wilson, who had a hand in two of those records, was already thinking about next year.
“I want to break my own record next year,” said Wilson. “That's what I’ll be working towards.”
But not so fast. Let’s talk about 2017’s accomplishments first.
It wasn’t just the winners who were setting records. And the speed overall was impressive. Just consider the 4A girls 4x200 relay finals where all three schools broke the state standard, which had stood for 34 years.
Union won in one minute, 37.89 seconds. Tahoma was second (1:38.51) and Issaquah was third (138.93), all of which would have been the best in the state if not for Union’s race on Saturday.
Also, consider: There would have been five more sprint records set if they had not been classified as wind-aided.
“I think we are seeing the cream of the crop,” said Central Kitsap coach Mark Ward, who’s been coaching Cougars for 26 years. “Kids in this generation, in many cases, have a reputation of being not real hard workers. But the ones that are here are not a part of that group that we talk about.
“These are a great bunch of kids.”
Wilson, who broke the record in 100 meters and was part of the record-breaking 4x100 relay team (Tierra Wilson, Olivia Ribera, Alisha Wilson) was hampered by Achilles’ and quad injuries.
Still, on Saturday, she ran the 100 in 11.55 second. The previous record was 11.61, a record that had stood for 25 years.
The Tahoma relay team ran a 46.62, beating the second place team by almost two seconds. The previous WIAA record was held by Federal Way with a time of 46.90.
This is the second year in a row that Tahoma has won the 4x100.
“Last year we didn't beat the state record so it made us want it more,” said senior Tierra Wilson. “During the offseason we trained hard, preseason we trained hard and high school season we ran hard.
“We came in with a whole new mindset and more motivation.”
DON’T FORGET THE BOYS
In the 2A boys 100, East Valley’s senior Rodrick Fisher had ran a 10.48 in the 100 meter dash on Friday setting the 2A meet record. On Saturday he almost matched that (10.49) to take first.
Fisher wasn't the only one to finish in the mid 10s. Senior Noland Wick from North Central won the 3A 100, running a 10.6. Dorien Simon of Lakes finished third with a time of 10.74.
Curtis’ junior Izaiah Fields second in the 4A 100 at 10.55 and Bellarmine’s Kelee Ringo finished third (10.58). Hanford senior Joseph Gauthier, who ran the fastest 100 time out of anyone with a 10.46.
“It is pretty crazy,” said Gauthier. “A lot of guys were coming out with fast times late in the season. You can’t let it get to you.”
The Lakes boys won the 3A 4x100 relay behind the Simon, who outlasted Gig Harbor’s Harrison Horwath in the last leg. The Tides finished second.
It seemed as though Simon had extra motivation going into the race following his defeat in the 100 meter dash.
“It was a good pick me up,” said Simon. “When Gig Harbor beat our times in the prelims that just made us even hungrier.”
Curtis’ 4x100 team was victorious in the 4A competition, edging Sumner.