Micheal Paulston is one step closer to claiming a state girls track title in Pasco.
The Auburn High sophomore qualified for Star Track with plenty of room to spare, winning the 1,600-meter championship last Saturday in the Class 3A West Central-Southwest District meet at Mount Tahoma High Stadium in Tacoma.
“I was looking just to qualify and get in (to state),” Paulston said. “I ran a pretty good time so I’m pretty satisfied with it.”
Paulston fought through the 85-degree heat to finish ahead of Bonney Lake’s Veronica Stinnett in 5 minutes, 11.74 seconds. Stinnett pulled ahead on the third lap before Paulston prevailed in the final 400 meters to take the top spot.
“She was going on harder than I wanted to go, so I just followed her into the corner and (kicked past) her in the last 100,” Paulston said.
The victory provided a morale boost for Paulston heading into the Star Track. Higher temperatures are expected for the meet, but Paulston is confident, having already beaten the heat once.
“I know in this kind of heat I can keep my pace so I can run good times in hotter weather and kind of build my confidence with it,” Paulston said.The trip will be the sophomore’s third to a state event this school year. She went with the Lions’ volleyball team last fall, and was a state medalist in gymnastics during the winter, helping the Lions take the third-place team trophy in that sport.
Morton is treating this season as a learning experience and feels she’s progressing in each sport.
“It’s exciting,” Morton said. “It’s definitely a lot of learning; I think I improved a lot in each (sport).”
Auburn Riverside finished fourth in the girl’s 4×100 relay event with a time of 50.07 seconds. Auburn Mountainview placed sixth with a time of 50.86 seconds. Both relay teams qualified for state.
Riverside’s Julian-Blake Cowan placed fifth in the 1,600 meters on Saturday with a time of 4.25.88. The junior also finished fifth in the 3,200 on Friday and hopes to improve upon his performances in Tacoma.
“It was decent considering that we still got another week to go to back off,” Cowan said. “It’s not exactly what I wanted here, but it’s getting there at least. It could have been way worse.”
TJ’s Adams, Malamura shine in 4A district meet
In the Class 4A West Central District meet, Jefferson’s Kayla Adams and Sofia Malamura went 1-2 in the shot put. Adams won with a throw of 39-4 ½ and Malamura was right behind at 39-2 1/2.
The Raiders’ duo rank 1-2 among 4A competitors with Adams, a freshman, posting the top throw of 41-1½ this season.
Malamura, a senior, won the discus at district with a toss of 121-9.