By Jeremy McDonald
ALBANY, Ore.–Almost a year to the day when she was watching and seeing the 6A Girl runners run while as a Astoria runner at the 4A level, Kaylee Mitchell had finally gotten the opportunity to take part with those same girls she was stunned about with the times they were putting up with almost with ease.
“When I was in 4A, I would go and look at all the 6A runners and go, ‘whooa’ the 6A runners and now I get to the opportunity to be one,” said Mitchell on the opportunity to be racing against some of the 6A talent with a chance to go race against them further at the Big Dance in Eugene if she qualifies Friday.
“It’s definitely like one of the best opportunities ever and I wouldn’t trade it for anything, it was really hard to leave my other track team but this track team like amazing and I’m so blessed to have the team and the coaches that I do, it’s pretty cool.”
Mitchell ran just the 800 meter dash Wednesday and though she is kicking herself for not going faster, she knows she’ll have another opportunity Friday to redeem herself come Finals time Friday afternoon.
“I wanted to go a little faster than I did in my prelim but I keep reminding myself that it’s a prelim and all that matters is the finals,” said Mitchell. “When I start getting tired I need to think about how I feel now or how I feel when I have a bad race and take all that energy and dig deeper and know that it’s going to be worth it at the end.
But let’s admit it, the blue track at West Albany is pretty neat. Mitchell pointed to until this year, she has never ran on a track quite as unique as what the Bulldogs have on their home course.
“I think it’s pretty cool that it’s a blue track, I’ve never gotten to run on a blue track before,” smiled Mitchell.
In other news around the track Wednesday, Austin Kleinman took the Discus title with a throw of 164-feet-five inches and Keaton Beckmann, while having some jumps that were longer nil-gated due to scratches, took the long jump title home with a 21-feet-11-inch leap.
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