Friday, August 10, 2007

Hailey girl wins national softball throw

Kaitana Martinez wins gold at Hershey track and field

Express Staff Writer

Thirteen-year-old Kaitana Martinez punches one for the Wood River East baseball team at last month?s Ray Nelson Little League Tournament in Hailey. Kaitana?s latest accomplishment was a first place finish in the girls 13-14 softball throw at the Hershey Track and Field Games North American Final last Saturday. Photo by David N. Seelig

The Wood River Valley has another national champion.

The latest one is 13-year-old Kaitana Martinez, a Hailey girl who threw a softball 179.6 feet to win first place in her age division at the Hershey Track and Field Games North American Final. The competition was held Saturday, Aug. 4, in Hershey Pa.

Kaitana's mother, Angie Martinez, said Kaitana's winning throw at Hershey as 14 feet longer than her previous best.

Kaitana has a habit of winning athletic competitions. She qualified for the Hershey North American finals by placing first at the Hershey Idaho and Region 3 competitions earlier this summer. Region 3 comprises the states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington and the Canadian provinces of Alberta and British Columbia and the Yukon and Northwest territories.

Kaitana has won the Hershey Idaho softball throw championship four times, and brought home the first place trophy once for the 100 meter dash.

She has been district champion in school competition in the triple jump, high jump and 100 meter hurdles. Kaitana is also a past regional champion in Punt, Pass and Kick competition.

She also participates in basketball, soccer and volleyball and baseball.

Kaitana is also an outstanding student with a 4.0 grade average. She plays the trumpet, volunteers for church and community activities and has been honored for leadership and citizenship.

Some 500 youngsters competed in the Hershey nationals. Kaitana was one of two from the Wood River Valley. Carey's Micaela Adamson placed 13th in the in the girls 13-14 standing long jump.

It was Micaela's third appearance at the finals.

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