Photo courtesy of Steve Ruggiero | Senior runner Carlo Ruggiero, the defending Metro and District 800-meter champion, successfully held on to both crowns with a season low of 1:54.97 at the Metro League Championship and is currently ranked No. 1 in the state.

Photo courtesy of Steve Ruggiero | Senior runner Carlo Ruggiero, the defending Metro and District 800-meter champion, successfully held on to both crowns with a season low of 1:54.97 at the Metro League Championship and is currently ranked No. 1 in the state.

Spartans advance nine to State track-and-field meet

A busy night of finals at the Seattle King County Track & Field District Championship, showcasing the best athletes from 32 high school teams in the district, capped a great two weeks of postseason competition for the Bainbridge High School team.

The Spartans began their journey at the Metro League Championships, bringing 25 qualified Spartan throwers, runners and jumpers, all competing for the opportunity to then move on to the district meet.

Those that made it through Districts will compete in the Washington State High School Track & Field Championship, to be held at Tacoma’s Mount Tahoma High School Thursday, May 23 through Saturday, May, 25 with more than 195 high school teams represented.

A number of notable performances were put in the books and the Spartans will send nine athletes to Tacoma, led by a pair of captains.

Junior runner Emma Brundige, running sprints and middle distance, broke through with a PR in the 400-meter finals at District with a time of 58.26, and is now ranked No. 3 in the state.

Senior runner Carlo Ruggiero, the defending Metro and District 800-meter champion, successfully held on to both crowns with a season low of 1:54.97 at Metro and is currently ranked No. 1 in the state.

Ruggiero also anchors the 1600-meter relay team along with fellow seniors Leander Von Specht, Carter Hall and Thorin Smith, who collectively posted a sizzling 3:23.59 in the district finals for the win.

Hall and Ruggiero were members of the 2017 state championship relay team and this year’s squad is currently ranked No. 1 in the state, as well, as they aim to repeat.

Spartan 300-meter hurdlers were likewise not to be denied a trip to State, as fellow seniors Natalie Taylor, who posted a personal record of 47.79 along the way, and Elliott Windrope (43.04) who, thanks to a great last-second surge, will be making the trip to Tacoma after narrow misses the previous year.

Freshman Allie Wildsmith, who just missed winning Districts with a leap of 5-foot, 2-inches in the high jump, and sophomore Jay Lollman, who posted a personal record in the javelin with a heave of 152-feet, 6-inches to nudge teammate Joe Tabisola (150-feet, .3-inches), will also move on to State at the head of a strong group of underclassmen waiting in the wings.

While not advancing to State, a number of Spartans gave strong showings while trying to reach the next level.

Senior Sawyer Blair, who just picked up pole vault this season, had an outstanding postseason, matching his personal record of 12-feet in the district finals.

Fellow vaulter Junior Hugh Fordyce qualified for District but was sidelined by illness.

Senior 110-meter hurdler Sean Lindsey (17.29 PR), senior 800-meter runners Liz Messenger (2:25.87 PR) and Junior Eva Entress (2:32.09 PR) also saved their best for last.

Off the track, senior Spartan discus throwers Joe Tabisola (131-feet, .3-inches; PR) and junior Andrea Plazzo (121-feet, .2-inches; PR) put in great individual efforts in a talented field, while senior thrower Kari Perry launched her own PR of 26-feet, 3-inches in the shot put in the Metro finals to cap her career.

Senior 110-meter hurdlers Casey Langsjoen (19.21 PR) and Nathan McVay (20.60 PR) likewise peaked at season’s end with their best times of the year.

Both meets showed that the present and future look bright for BHS with great performances from across their roster, team officials said.

Highlights include freshmen runners Eden Michael with a PR of 11:32 in a deep 3,200-meter field two nights after running a hard 1600-meter, and Alex Miller (4:41), who more than held his own in a stacked 1600-meter field that included 10 runners under 4:30 each.

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