Emily Morley got stronger as the events went on and took silver in the heptathlon at the B.C. High School Track and Field Championships last weekend.
Multi-event competitions are held a week before the main meet, which is now under way at McLeod Athletic Park in Langley.
Maple Ridge secondary coach Ken Elphick was impressed with Morley’s performance.
“That’s a fantastic result. She had an amazing second day, where she PB’d in everything,” he said.
“The last person we had do this well in multi-events was Nick Wilkes. She is solid at everything.”
The late Wilkes now has the MRSS annual track meet named in his memory.
Elphick watched Morley’s confidence grow as she placed well in each event, growing stronger as she realized she had a great shot at gold.
She finished the first day in second place, and over the second day closed the gap in the points-based competition.
She finished second overall, based on good results in each event:
• 100m hurdles, second;
• high jump, fourth;
• shot put, first;
• 200m dash, third;
• long jump, second;
• javelin, second;
• 800m run, first.
“I was hoping to medal,” said Morley, noting that she took bronze in the pentathlon as a junior.
She is a member of Golden Ears Athletics, with which the speedster expends most of her energy on the track, running the 400m and 400m hurdles.
She is competing in both of those events at the provincials, and will also run with the MRSS relay teams.
“We have a really good shot in the relays,” she said. “I’m looking forward to those events the most, I think.”
Last year, she won silver in the junior girls 300m hurdles at the provincials, so there is a strong chance that she will be on a podium again before the end of the day on Saturday, said Elphick.
Morley’s closest competitor in this year’s heptathlon, and the overall event winner, Jorden Hall of Earl Marriott secondary, is in her grad year. So, Morley won’t have to contend with her again in Grade 12, and would likely enter the event as the favourite to win gold.
She and her coach see lots of potential for her in the multi events.
“She is one of those quiet kids who works really hard,” said Elphick. “She could be a great heptathlete.”
Morley trains six days per week, with both the school team and the community track club. Some days she attends practices for both.
Elphick said he could get her more specialized coaching in high jump, and he envisions the former softball player adding distance to her javelin throws.
“There’s a lot of growth to be had,” he said.
Morley said she enjoys the multi events, and plans to make it more of a focus in her training next year, with a goal to compete at the university level.
Two other athletes from MRSS also posted solid results, as Adrian Troung and Ty Stevenson finished sixth and seventh in the Grade 8 pentathlon.