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Mid-Willamette girls track and field: South's DeVyldere wins pole vault with personal best

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South Albany High senior pole vaulter Sarah DeVyldere has spent a few days recently working on her hand grip position.

It was a transition, but one that paid off in her favor Wednesday.

DeVyldere finished the girls competition in the Mid-Willamette Conference track and field district meet at West Albany with a three-inch personal best and a win at 9 feet, 3 inches.

Though it was a bit windy, DeVyldere said she “got lucky” in that it wasn’t too bad on each of her attempts.

With a personal best at the district meet, her anticipation is high for state.

“I’m so looking forward to getting up there to 10 foot. That was definitely my goal when I started this season and I’m so psyched to do it because we just need one more push and we’re hoping to get there,” she said. “I guess anything feels possible now that I’ve won.”

Corvallis’ Kaia Anspacher was third (9-0, PR), Crescent Valley’s Kamryn Huntsman was sixth (8-0, PR), CV’s Zoe DeAmicis was seventh (7-6, PR) and Corvallis’ Elena Wright eighth (7-6, PR).

The top two placers in each event and those meeting qualifying standards advance to next week’s 5A state meet at Hayward Field in Eugene. Five statewide wild-card entries will also be awarded based on district meet finals results.

The district meet concludes Friday.

Emily Wisniewski’s next record-setting performance will have to wait at least a few more days.

The Crescent Valley freshman ran from the front in the 3,000-meter final and steadily pulled away to win in 10 minutes, 12.82 seconds. North Salem’s Isabel Swain kept contact for about half the race before falling back and finishing second in 10:24.19.

“I expected her stay at least through the miles because she’s pretty strong, then I wanted to speed up a lap and pull ahead,” said Wisniewski, who holds the 5A freshman all-time record at 9:53.89, which has her leading the classification’s season list by more than 17 seconds.

Avery Nason of Corvallis was third (10:36.37, PR), West Albany’s Megumi Ludlow fourth (10:44.39) Corvallis’ Madeline Nason fifth (10:49.16), Corvallis’ Finn Hanson sixth (11:29.48, PR), CV’s Sasha Kelly seventh (11:40.87) and West Albany’s Lily Heidrick eighth (12:26.21, PR).

Wisniewski, the 5A cross-country state champion last fall, was running to win Wednesday and not concerned with time.

“That was the plan because I have the 1,500 on Friday, which will be a harder race,” she said.

Wisniewski leads the 5A 1,500 season list at 4:44.94, but West Albany’s Haley Blaine (4:47.25) is not far behind.

Corvallis senior Sydney Soskis came away with a win in the girls long jump after a personal-best mark of 16-8½, one of five jumps she had past 16 feet.

Wednesday marked the second meet this season that she had jumped 16 feet. She set her previous PR of 16-6 last year.

“It just makes me feel better when I get close to my PR and I’m consistent,” she said. “Then I know what I need to change so that I can do better.”

Soskis said she’s practiced the event heavily recently and said her coaches have been a big help.

Soskis will have a busy day Friday as the top seed in the 100 and 200 and a leg on the conference-leading 4x100 relay.

West Albany senior Madyson Hellem got through some mental hurdles to take second in the long jump at 16-4¾, a PR in her first season ever competing in the event.

She said her coaches told her Tuesday to “let it all out,” and that’s what she did.

“Then I just had fun with it and I did so much better than I have both performance and mental-wise and it was a lot of fun,” said Hellem, whose three best marks came on her three finals attempts, and she saved her best for last.

Lebanon’s Sadie Voight was seventh (14-5) and teammate Hayden Knutson was eighth (14-3¾).

Crescent Valley’s Sierra Noss credits her form for what was a winning and personal-best throw of 119-2 on her first attempt in the discus.

“I just watched it go and I knew it was farther than other ones I’ve had in competition,” she said. “I feel like I really just improved on my form throughout the season. That really helped me throw my best.”

Noss is second on the 5A season list and is excited for what she might accomplish at state.

“I really feel like the momentum from this is going to carry over into next week and help me do really well,” she said.

Orianna Campbell of Corvallis was third (100-11, PR), Melia Rasmussen of West Albany fifth (95-9), Emmy Louber of West Albany sixth (94-8, PR) and Jesse Martin of Crescent Valley seventh (93-0, PR).

Jesse Sowa is a sports reporter at the Corvallis Gazette-Times. He can be reached at 541-812-6065.

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