Duplicating their output from last year, Blaine County track and field athletes earned 11 gold medals Saturday when the 2006 State Hershey track meet for the 9-14 year-old age classes was staged in Hailey.
For the third time, the city of Hailey hosted the State Hershey track and field meet at Phil Homer Field. About 140 young Idaho athletes from Rexburg, Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Boise, Twin Falls, Rupert and Caldwell competed in the meet.
The sizable Hailey group at Homer Field boasted one repeat individual winner—Jon Paris in the 400-meter dash. Paris prevailed in the 9-10 age group last June and this time moved up and won boys' 11-12.
Hailey's Kaitana Martinez won the girls' 11-12 softball throw by 40 feet over her closest competitor with an amazing toss of 155 feet and 9 inches. She threw 142-8, 146-0 and then 155-9 on her three attempts.
Other local state gold medalists were James Paris in the boys' 13-14 1600-meter run; K.J. Savaria on his 11th birthday in the boys' 11-12 softball throw; Carey's Micaela Adamson in the girls' 11-12 long jump; Carey's Nate Adamson in the boys' 9-10 400m dash; Ketchum's Hailey Montgomery in the girls' 9-10 200m dash; and Hailey's Brittney Bowers in the girls' 9-10 400m dash.
Once again the relays were good to Blaine County kids. They won three of the six relays including a boys' and girls' sweep in the 11-12 age classes. Over the course of the morning, 42 events were contested.
Winners in each state event were eligible to earn all-expense-paid, four-day trips to the 29th annual North American Hershey Finals in August at Hershey, Pa. But the identity of those athletes going to Pennsylvania won't be known for a while.
But Blaine County athletes certainly did well on a mostly sunny morning in the Idaho mountains.
Individual second places went to Nicholas Weber in the boys' 11-12 long jump; Elizabeth Fry in the girls' 11-12 200m dash and long jump; Cooper Bailey in the boys' 9-10 200m dash; Brandon Dolenar in the boys' 9-10 softball throw; Hailey Montgomery in the girls' 9-10 400m dash; and Ashley Durtschi in the girls' 9-10 softball throw.
This year's State Hershey meet was sponsored by the Blaine County Recreation District with assistance from Wood River High School athletic director Ron Martinez and volunteers. It was coordinated by the Blaine County School District.
Check next week's Local Life section of the Express for more photos of the local athletes.