Losing three events at the Class 2A West Central District track and field championships this weekend wasn’t a disappointment to River Ridge High School’s Josh Braverman.
He actually preferred it.
“Feels good to lose,” he said. “It makes it a lot better than just winning all the time.”
Braverman, a junior, is the top-ranked Class 2A hurdler in the state, in both the 110 and 300 meters. He also has top-10 marks in the 200-meter dash and long jump.
He qualified for next week’s Class 2A state championships in all four of those events on Friday and Saturday at Bremerton High School.
“It was a good meet,” Braverman said. “I didn’t get the times I wanted, but it was good experiencing competition and gives me more motivation at practice to do better.”
He’s typically alone in first place, but was tested in all four events. On Friday, he placed third in the long jump (20 feet, 5 ½ inches). On Saturday, he took third in the 200 (22.77) and second in the 300 hurdles (38.56) behind Sequim’s Oscar Herrera — who is the No. 2 hurdler in Class 2A.
“He got me,” Braverman said. “I didn’t give it my all on the corner, and that’s what mattered. … I beat him last year, and he had a lot more motivation than me. Next week, I’ll have more motivation than him.”
Braverman’s season-best mark of 38.17 is the fastest in the state of Washington in any classification. He did win one district title, posting a 14.21 in the 110 hurdles.
He collected 30 points for River Ridge, which took third in the boys team competition (66 points). Franklin Pierce (71 points) took first place. River Ridge’s boys team is the defending 2A state champion.
“We have a lot of good athletes and we’re all doing the right things,” Braverman said. “We’ve just got to follow the process.”
The Hawks boys and girls teams advanced five individuals (some competing in multiple events) and one relay team to the 2A state meet at Mount Tahoma this upcoming Thursday through Saturday.
“It’s a good feeling,” said Hawks junior Trey Dorfner, who anchored the 4x100 relay team. “Everybody saying you’re doing a good job, and qualifying for state. It’s a good opportunity.”
Dorfner, who also plays football and basketball, turned out for track midway through the season. His first race was Friday in the 4x100 relay preliminaries. After a handoff snafu on the final leg, the Hawks were seeded second.
Saturday’s final was cleaner. Dorfner outstepped Clover Park’s anchor at the finish line to win the district title. The squad of Ryan Blash, Alex Coleman, DJ Smith and Dorfner recorded a 44.05. Clover Park finished second in 44.19.
“We made the adjustment,” Dorfner said. “We started off well and we had the handoffs. We focused on what we needed to do.”
Coleman also qualified in the triple jump (fourth, 40-8) after missing the cut in the long jump Friday. Smith qualified in Saturday’s 400 (sixth, 51.93) and long jump (fourth, 20-4 1/2), while Jordan Skipper-Brown qualified in Friday’s high jump (second, 6-4) and long jump (fifth, 20-1 3/4).
Taryn Lucas, a River Ridge freshman, qualified in the high jump (tied for second, 4-11) for the girls team. Olympic won the girls team title with 104 points, followed by Liberty (87) in second and North Kitsap (75) in third place.
4A WEST CENTRAL/SW BI-DISTRICT MEET
Olympia and Timberline advanced three athletes apiece on the second and final day of the bi-district championships at French Field in Kent.
Olympia’s Maia Halverson qualified for next weekend’s 4A state meet at Mount Tahoma in the javelin (third, 116-1), and Kiersten Kimminau qualified in the 3,200 (sixth, 11:28.06).
Ryan Underland (third, 152-9) and Timberline’s Trenton Fisher (seventh, 143-9) both advanced in the discus. Timberline’s Jaylen Taylor also qualified in the triple jump (third, 44-9 1/2), and Selina So’oto qualified in the shot put (sixth, 38-6 1/4).
3A WEST CENTRAL/SW BI-DISTRICT MEET
Shelton’s Mike Husky won the bi-district title in the shot put (52-9) on the second and final day of the meet at Sunset Chev Stadium in Sumner. Colton Paller took second (52-9) to qualify for next weekend’s 3A state meet at Mount Tahoma.
Lindsey Goldsby also qualified in the 800 (fifth, 2:20.64) for Shelton.
North Thurston’s Peter Allegre qualified in the 3,200 (second, 9:40.51).
Four athletes advanced for Capital — Regie Grady in the girls 200 (fourth, 25.92), Bella Torres in the 3,200 (sixth, 11:39.03), Chloe Lamenzo in the long jump (sixth, 16-2 1/4) and Jason Turner in the boys 200 (sixth, 22.89).
The Lincoln boys ran away with the team title with 133.33 points, which had three winners in Xzavier Weston (100, 10.99), Walker Flynn (400, 49.00) and James Mwaura (1,600, 4:23.26; 3,200, 9:26.12).
Bonney Lake, which grabbed wins in the 4x400 relay and Cody Miller’s winning times of 14.56 in the 110 hurdles.
Central Kitsap finished in third place with 63 points.
Hazen ended up winning the tournament with 145 points, but three area schools finished in the top five. Enumclaw came in second with 133.5 points, Sumner finished third (105) and Mount Tahoma scored 72.
Sumner’s Jordan Thompson dominated the short distance events, winning the 200 (25.50) and 400 (56.81).
Auburn’s Rebecca Thareek won both hurdling events with times of 14.90 in the 100 and 45.61 in the 300 meters.
Staff writer Jeffrey Giuliani also added to this report.