High School track and field athletes found themselves battling more than just opposing schools at the White Pine Invitational on Friday. Strong winds and rain made for a less than ideal setting for the competition, which had to end prematurely due to lightning.
Despite the lack of cooperation from mother nature, White Pine still found themselves on top of the podium on both the boys and girls sides of the event. Senior Nate Lee had to put in some extra work at the meet to help the boys to their first place finish by winning the 110 meter hurdles race twice after an issue with the timing system nullified the first race’s results.
“I was pumping myself up for 15 minutes standing in the rain before the first race, so when they told me it didn’t count after I won I was pretty disappointed but thankfully I was able to go back and do it again,” Lee said.
Outside of the redo the bad weather did little to slow Lee down as he also finished first in the triple jump and the 400 meter race, setting a new personal record in the process.
“You don’t know if you are going to run your best time or not when you have all that wind blowing in your face but since it was at our home meet I really wanted to give it all that I had,” the senior said.
Saxton Brewster also had a good day, finishing second in the long jump and high jump. Both the boys and girl’s teams swept the pole vault event, claiming all four top spots on each side. Cole Burdick’s 10 foot vault earned him first place in the event and the girls had a three-way tie at six feet six inches between Madeline Pickens, Jenna Gubler and Mikalyn Almberg. The Ladycats, who won their side of the meet by over 100 points, placed first in all three relay events and also swept all four top spots in the triple jump.
Head Coach Justin Locke said that he was disappointed the meet had to be cut short by three events on the boys side and four events for the girls but was thankful that members of the community still volunteered their time in the rain.
“You always want to put on the best meet you can. With the weather the way that it was I thought our kids did well but I really wanted to thank the people that gave up their Friday to get soaked helping us out,” Locke said.