TACOMA — The Kamiakin girls track and field team wrapped up a remarkable three-year run Saturday, winning a third consecutive Class 3A team title.
The Braves finished with a record-setting 123 points, crossing the rare 100-point barrier for a second consecutive year and becoming the first big school girls team to win three in a row since Holy Names from 1998-2000.
“That’s unreal,” senior Megan Beauchene said. “We are a part of history. I’m so, so blessed to go to Kamiakin where success is expected. It makes you excited for the future. There are more exciting things to come.”
Holy Names Academy was second with 102 points, but the power and depth of the Kamiakin team shined through.
The Braves won six titles: Ellie Heiden in the 200 and 400 meters, Beauchene the 1,600 and 3,200, Andrea Stapleton the high jump and Elisa Grandemange the discus. They also got second places from their 4x200 relay, Lindsey Schauble in the 300 hurdles, Stapleton in the triple jump, Sira Toure in the shot put and Grandemange in the javelin.
“Only one team gets to end on a victory, and what a blessing to be that team,” Heiden said. “Not only to be that team, but to be that team so many times. There is definitely something to be said about our coaches.”
Heiden won two events Saturday, while Beauchene wrapped up her marvelous career with a win in the 3,200. She ran a personal-best time of 10 minutes, 34.52 seconds, blowing by Lakeside’s Andrea Masterson with 500 meters to go.
“That was pretty early,” she said. “I was definitely feeling it on the last lap. And I was like, ‘Crap, I’ve got a long ways to go.’ But ‘state title, state title, state title’ was going through my mind.”
And state title is what she got. She will run for the University of Washington in the fall after getting her first two state titles this weekend.
“It’s awesome. I just gave Ellie a big hug and we were talking about freshman year and all that we have accomplished,” Beauchene said. “It is awesome to look back on it and just be so happy.”
Heiden agreed, pointing out that the two were pint-sized freshman with big dreams that they realized over the years.
“Freshman year we were here and now we are on full-ride scholarships to our dream schools,” said Heiden, who is headed to BYU. “How much better can it be?”
While Kamiakin is losing its two stars and Grandemange, who won back-to-back discus titles, the Braves do have Stapleton and Schauble coming back. The pair shined throughout the weekend and will be joined by Samantha Raines, Emily Moon and plenty of others.
Schauble nearly added a state title in the 300 hurdles, leading until the final 15 meters.
“I didn’t get first obviously, but it was still way better than my expectations,” she said. “I’m so excited.”
As the rest of the Braves surely are too.
w Craig Craker: 582-1509; firstname.lastname@example.org