Barnes, GrosJacques, Porters qualify for state

High jumpers headed to state: First place, Taylor Yoro of Orting; second place, MacKenzie Altig of Bellevue Christian; third place, Alex Ballenger of King
High jumpers headed to state: First place, Taylor Yoro of Orting; second place, MacKenzie Altig of Bellevue Christian; third place, Alex Ballenger of King's; fourth place, Whitney Porter of Friday Harbor; fifth place, Christine GrosJacques of Friday Harbor.
— image credit: Leanne GrosJacques

Personal bests become the order of the day

Kelsey Barnes, Christine GrosJacques, Matthew Porter and his sister Whitney Porter all qualified for the track and field championships, Thursday and Saturday at the tri-district meet at King's High School.

The four will make the trip Friday to Mount Tahoma High School in Tacoma.

Barnes, a freshman, qualified in shot put with a distance of 33 feet 5 inches, burying her personal record by more than two feet.

GrosJacques placed fifth in the high jump, clearing her mark of 4 feet 9 inches.

Matthew Porter qualified in three events: the long jump, the triple jump and the 400m run. Whitney Porter uncorked her best time of the year in the 100m high hurdles, shaving over a second off her time a day earlier.

"As a coach, I am extremely proud of the efforts of these athletes and the others that tried so hard," Coach Darrin Scheffer said. "They were at an event loaded with talented athletes and allowed their talent to shine with the best of them."

Scheffer thinks Barnes' put ties Kathleen Wilson's 30-year-old record, and is checking the books to make sure.

Freshman Kelsey Barnes distinguished herself earlier this year on the basketball court where she played center, and this track season she has made the field throwing events her speciality, throwing the discus 89 feet 2 inches May 9 at the sub-district meet and the javelin 93 feet 6 inches in March.

GrosJacques overcame joining the track team late and a cracked rib to place fifth in the high jump, clearing 4 feet 9 inches, one inch lower than her fourth-placed teammate, Whitney Porter.

Matthew Porter placed second in the long jump in Saturday's finals with a jump of 20 feet 11 inches, the same distance he jumped Thursday.

In the triple jump, he did better than he did all season — 43 feet 2 inches, a foot farther than his best mark going into the finals.

In the 400m, he ran in 52.08 seconds — possibly a new school record.

Whitney Porter also qualified in the 100m hurdles, an event she's been working at for several years. Her lowest time came Saturday against her toughest field; she earned a fifth place showing with a time of 16.87 seconds, bettering her best ever by a 16th of a second.

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