The Ritzville Adams County Journal - Eastern Adams County's Only Independent Voice Since 1887

By Steve Salins

Kinch leads the way for Broncos at District Meet


Journal photo by Steve Salins

Freshman Sydney Kinch competes in the pole vault at the Northeast 2B District Meet in Spokane Valley on May 18 as LRS assistant coach John Kragt (hat) looks on. Kinch qualified for the 2B State Championships at Roos Field on the EWU campus this weekend in both the pole vault and long jump.

Last Friday afternoon marked the start of the final path at the District Meet for track and field athletes seeking a place at the 2B State Championships.

The pathway to State is shaped like an hourglass, and the District Meet is the pinched narrow point of the path. The Sub-District meet held in Ritzville ten days prior moved at least eight competitors in each event further along. The District Meet passed only four competitors in each event to the championships at Eastern Washington University, and the competition was more fierce.

Unfortunately, dark afternoon clouds gave no respite and multiple umbrellas were the norm as the track and field was pelted with rain throughout the afternoon activities. Some events, including the woman's pole vault, were postponed to Saturday. The 1,600 meter run, women's 100-meter hurdles, 4x200 relay and some preliminary field events were contested in wet weather.

Lind-Ritzville/Sprague sent eight competitors in 14 events to the District competition. Brooke Coons was scheduled to run the 100-meter hurdles on Friday, and did so in a pelting rain as competitors, officials and spectators ran for cover during this last competition of the afternoon. Coons ran her personal best (20.56) in the event, but finished fifth-one place behind the last qualifier for State.

Saturday morning dawned cloudy, but dry, and the rest of the day's scheduled activities ran on-schedule. Sydney Kinch and her vaulting pole participated among the earliest events. Kinch finished third in the pole vault, but at 8'6" her mark was a foot lower than her personal best of 9'6", which also was the winning pole vault. She made it through the narrow part of the State path though, and will compete at EWU next weekend. From the vaulting mat she moved to the long jump runway, joining the competition with a 15'-8.75" jump, good for fourth place and a ticket to the event at State.

Meanwhile Brynne Nelson and Julia Klein took their throws out of the shot put ring. Nelson, who has been the leading Bronco woman in the shot put with a best throw of 33 feet, scratched on her three attempts and was out of the competition. The shot put winner threw 33-10, so the disappointment was severe and a reminder that one-time outcomes don't always follow the best work of a season.

Klein followed Nelson in the shot put ring. Having thrown a best of 28'9" during the season, Klein punched out a personal best throw of 30'1.5"-the distance tying her with another competitor for fourth place. At press time, the results list Klein as in fifth place, but the tie raises the question if both women will go on to State.

Klein was not finished for the day, however. Shortly after her shot put efforts, she lined up for the first track event of the afternoon: the 800-meter run. Running out of Lane 4, she ran with the front-runners for the first of two laps, but faded toward the end of the final straightaway and finished in fifth place, just short of a place at State. Klein's 800-meter time was a fine 2:29.6, a personal best for her. Almost two hours later, she took on the 400-meter run, turning in a time of 65.73 for seventh place.

On the track, in addition to her pole vaulting and long jumping, Kinch ran in both the 100 and 200-meter sprint races. Her times in the 100 (14.35) and 200 (28.67) were both about a second more than her season best in both events. She finished in 6th place in both, a couple places out of State consideration. Over the course of the season, as a freshman, Kinch has been a consistent top competitor in all four events.

Conrad Ziemer ran both the 400-meter and 800-meter races all season, consistently improving his time in each during the season. From a 2:21.88 initial 800-meter run, he improved to a personal best at District of 2:02.93, good for third place and a reservation in the 800-meter race at State. In the 400 meters, he improved from 55.66 at the first meet at Cheney to 53.51 on May 3. His 54.72 at District netted him a fifth place finish. Additionally, Ziemer long jumped 17-06.5, outside of the top four places.

Spencer Gering competed in the 200-meter sprint, finishing sixth in 25.04, about a second behind the fourth place sprinter. Sam Michels also took part – running in the last individual race of the day (3,200 meter run) and finishing with a time of 12:02.07.

Interestingly, only three Bronco performances at this meet were personal bests – two in the 800-meter run (Conrad Ziemer and Julia Klein) as well as Brooke Coons (running the 100-meter hurdles).

The State Championships will be held on Roos Field at Eastern Washington University from May 23-25. Ziemer will represent the Broncos in the 800 meters, while Kinch will participate in both the pole vault and the long jump.


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