WRCA’s Johnston soars to provincial medals

Glen Johnston flew higher than the competition on two occasions at the 2014 B.C. High School Track and Field Championships in Langley last weekend.

The White Rock Christian Academy senior came into the meet as the favourite in the senior boys’ pole vault event and he didn’t disappoint, soaring 3.7 metres to win the gold medal.

“I was kind of expecting to win gold,” Johnston said. “I had been jumping really well coming into the meet so I went into the provincials hoping for gold. I went into it with the mindset that I had to compete as hard as I could and that worked out for me.”

That was Johnston’s second winning leap of the week. Earlier in the week in the decathlon competition, Johnston cleared 3.8 metres to win the pole vault segment en route to a silver medal.

The two medals allowed him to take bragging rights in the Johnston household.

“This is really exciting for me,” he said. “I have two older brothers (Carl and Blair) who won silver and bronze at provincials. One of them won gold in the 4×400-metre relay, but I’m the first to win gold in an individual event.”

Unfortunately, Johnston was the only senior athlete from Surrey, White Rock and North Delta to win a gold at this year’s provincial meet. One athlete looking for the silver lining in his results was Elgin Park’s Jake Hanna. The Elgin Park Grade 11 runner medaled every time he stepped on the track, collecting a trio of silver medals.

Hanna placed second in the senior boys’ 400-metre event and then added identical medals for the 400m hurdles and the 200m sprint.

“I’m happy with how I did, but it was a little rough,” Hanna said. “The heat for the 200m and my final for the 400m hurdles was back-to-back – there wasn’t any races between them so I had less that 10 minutes to recover from one race before the other started.

“I guess I shouldn’t have run the 200m, but I thought there would be more time between the races. My hurdles race really wasn’t that great because I wasn’t feeling my best. It was a good workout though.”

Junior competition (Grades 9 and 10) yielded five gold medals for Surrey-area schools.

Semiahmoo’s Jessica Williams took top honours for the junior girls’ 400m and then helped the Totems nab another gold medal in the junior girls’ 4x400m relay. Semiahmoo also prevailed in the junior girls’ 4x100m relay final.

Earl Marriott’s Jade Duncanson dashed to gold in the junior girls’ 100m final while Jero Abad won gold for Holy Cross in the junior boys’ high jump with a leap of 1.85 metres.

In the Grade 8 segment of the meet, Katarina Vlahovic of Fraser Heights could not be caught as she took top honours for both the 100m and 200m sprint races.

Other Grade 8 gold medal winners included Kyle Gibson of Seaquam (boys’ 400m); Alexa Porpaczy of Semiahmoo (girls’ high jump); and Jaxon Mackie of Earl Marriott (boys’ 3,000m).

The Lord Tweedsmuir Panthers team of Janet Cho, Ella Cathcart, Anika Hart and Halle Lauringer finished atop the podium for the Grade 8 girls’ 4x100m relay.