You always want to perform your best when it matters most, and for many of the Taft High School track and field athletes, that’s exactly what they did at the State Meet this past weekend.
The Tigers had numerous athletes at the State Meet at Mt. Hood Community College May 17-18 and many with State experience. But it was sophomore JJ French who stole the show for Taft as he had a team best second place finish in the pole vault.
French vaulted a staggering 12-09 in the finals to earn the silver medal and record a personal record (PR) for his young track career.
For the girls, junior Ella Knott was the top finisher for Taft as her javelin throw of 119-07 was good enough for fifth place in the event. Senior Savannah Russo also threw well, finishing eighth in the same event with a toss of 106-08.
In other field events, junior Elin Fitch’s leap of 38-07.5 was the sixth furthest in the boys triple jump and senior Mad Scott had an eighth place finish in the javelin with a throw of 152-00. Senior Jacob Mayoral was 11th in the boys pole vault 10-06 and sophomore Avery Nightengale competed in the girls pole vault but was unable to place.
On the track, junior sprinter Kaden Wright was tenth in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.82 and eleventh in the 200-meter dash despite missing the finals. Senior David Jin had a pair of eleventh place finishes in the 110-hurdles and 300 hurdles and junior Edson Fuentes placed twelth in the 1,500 meter race.
Finally, the Tiger 4x100 relay team of Wright, Jin, sophomore William Calderon and freshmen Brayan Mateo-Perez placed seventh with a time of 45-01.