Liberty boys, Issaquah girls take first in district track meet

May 10, 2011

By Bob Taylor

Jason Hollaway, Issaquah High School senior, hits the bar at 14 feet, 9 inches while trying to pad the new school pole vault record of 14-6 he had made moments before, breaking Mike Katayama’s 14-0 set in 2000. By Greg Farrar

The Liberty High School boys team and the Skyline girls team earned district bragging rights May 5, when each finished first at the annual Issaquah School District track and field meet in Issaquah’s Gary Moore Stadium.

The meet was the final tuneup for this week’s KingCo Conference championships at Juanita High School. Both the 4A KingCo and 3A/2A KingCo leagues will showcase their top athletes at the meet, scheduled for May 11 and 13. Competition starts at 3:30 p.m. both days.

While district pride was on the line, it wasn’t the only objective for teams last Thursday.

“You want to get as many kids qualified and relays qualified for KingCo,” Issaquah coach Gwen Robertson said. “I think the meet went pretty much that way.”

The Liberty boys finished first with 69 points and host Issaquah came in second with 58. Skyline, missing star Kasen Williams, was third with 54 points.

Liberty’s Joshua Gordon was the standout of the boys’ meet with four first places. He won the 100-meter race in 10.8 seconds and the 200 in 22.4. Gordon captured the high jump by going 6 feet, not his highest of the season but good enough to take first especially with Williams, the state high-jump leader, not competing in the meet. Wrapping up his day, Gordon won the long jump by going 21 feet, 10 1/2 inches. Teammate Devin Bennett was second at 20-3 3/4.

Bennett won the 800 in 1 minute, 59.2 seconds. Hiron Redmon, of Liberty, captured the 400 in 52.5, just edging Skyline’s Andrew Millett, a close second in 52.9.

“There were a lot of good races,” Robertson said.

One of the best races in the boys meet came in the 1,600, where Skyline’s Kyle Branch was first in 4:32. Issaquah’s Turner Wiley came in second in 4:33.2 and Liberty’s Tyler Westenbroek was third in 4:34.4.

Branch also captured the 3,200 in 9:51.9 with Wiley second in 9:54.6. He also anchored the Spartans’ winning 4×400 relay, which completed the race in 3:31.2. Blake Young, Millett and Drew Matthews were other members of the relay team. Liberty was second in 3:31.9.

Issaquah’s 4×100 relay team of Allen Su, Jorrell Dorsey, Kyle Farmer and Alex Rylander finished first in 43.8, the fastest time of the year for that group.

The pole vault featured two possible KingCo champions in Issaquah’s Jason Hollaway and Liberty’s Hamilton Noel. Hollaway soared 14-6 to set a school record and finish first. Noel, last year’s 3A KingCo champion, was second at 12-6.

Dorsey, who had never competed in the triple jump until this year, won the event by going 42-3 1/2. Bennett was second at 41-9.

Skyline girls first

The Skyline girls finished first with 72 points. Liberty was second with 60.5 points and Issaquah took third with 56.5.

Issaquah’s Haley Jacobson won the 100 in 12.1 and took the 200 in 25.1. Teammate Lauren Bruner also had two first places, winning the 100 and 300 hurdles. Both ran as members of Issaquah’s first-place 4×100 relay team, which turned in a time of 50 seconds. Kim Varney and Mckenna Hogan were other members of the relay team.

Liberty’s Amy Broska captured the 1,600 in 5:26.7 and took the 3,200 in 11:50.6.

Skyline won the 4×200 relay and the 4×400 relay. Kaylie Greninger, Haley Smith, Jordan Branch and Michelle Bretl made up the 4×200 relay team. Greninger, Maddi Hutson, Branch and Bretl made up the 4×400 relay team.

Skyline’s Lindsay Coutts had two first places, winning the high jump and the long jump.

In one of the surprises of the meet, Issaquah’s Katie Zhong captured the javelin with a throw of 107 feet, 1 inch. Haley Ziegler, the defending 4A KingCo champion, was second at 103-9.

Defending champions return

Several athletes who finished first at last year’s KingCo championships will attempt to defend their titles this week.

Williams won three titles at last year’s KingCo meet. However, he has been bothered by a hamstring injury and his status for this week’s meet is unknown.

Skyline returns as the defending 4A KingCo champion.

Liberty has defending champions in Gordon and Noel. Gordon won the high jump last year. Based on his performance this spring, Gordon is a candidate to win some other events, too.

The Issaquah girls have defending champions in Jacobson and Eva Perry. Jacobson won the 200 last year and Perry captured the pole vault. Perry has been sidelined much of the spring because of an injury. However, Robertson said the junior is ready to compete this week.

“She has been approved to compete and plans to jump on Friday,” Robertson said.

Bob Taylor: 392-6434, ext. 236, or Comment at

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One Response to “Liberty boys, Issaquah girls take first in district track meet”

  1. Anonymous on May 11th, 2011 1:22 pm

    Madison Birdsall of Liberty took first place in the 800m with a 2:21. This was her first time ever running the event.

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