South set to send three to state track meet

Coming around the final turn, South Kitsap’s Sean Coleman found himself in dead last in the 1,600-meter race Saturday at the 4A West Central District 3 track and field meet at Mount Tahoma High School.

“I’ve never taken naps before,” Coleman said. “I know it’s a shame to be the clapper. So I was like, ‘Well, it’s time to go.’”

And did he ever.

Coleman turned up the heat to not only finish in 10th place, but also set a new personal record in the mile run. It was efforts like that made the meet a success for the Wolves despite advancing just three to the state tournament this Friday and Saturday in Pasco.

“If a kid PRs, you really can’t ask them to do much more,” SK coach Ed Santos said of Coleman’s effort.

Advancing to next week’s Star Track will be Justin Schneck, who took sixth in the 800; Samantha Godfrey, who placed seventh in the 3,200; and Renard Williams, who also placed seventh in the shot put.

The top seven from each event advanced to the state tourney.

Overall, the boys team claimed five points, tying them in 31st place with Thomas Jefferson.

Gig Harbor won the boys team title with 86.5 points. The girls squad tied for 34th, with Olympia taking the girls crown.

“It was not bad,” Santos said of the team’s effort overall. “We had some good and some bad. But getting Godfrey in and Renard in the shot put, that was good.”

Santos said both Godfrey and Schneck will be prepared to take on the state’s top competitors this weekend, adding that all they can do now is stay ready.

“Both are seniors,” Santos said. “Both have had many cross-country and track seasons under their belts. Now it’s just getting some rest and sharpening.”

The boys 1,600 relay was one team Santos was hoping would qualify, also noting that his girls relays came close.

“The boys 4-by-4 relay just missed qualifying,” he said. “That was a little disappointing. But our girls relays had season bests. With one senior (Ashley Russ), the rest are returning, so it’s nice to get them some big meet experience.”

With Kelli Bates, Kellie Darymple, Angela Pappuleaus, Sera Olson, Terra Holler, Marie Spiker and Armeena DeWalt all returning, Santos said the pieces are in place for the Wolves to make a deep run next season.

“It’s a great, competitive group,” Santos said. “They wanted to qualify. But experiencing the whole thing, they said, ‘This is where we are, and this is where we need to be.’ Now they’ll understand what they need to do.

“I don’t think the girls sprint group next year will settle for anything but the state meet,” he said.

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