Brookfield East sophomore Alisha Harper had an impressive performance in the triple jump at the WIAA State Track and Field Meet on Friday and Saturday at Veterans Memorial Stadium at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.
Harper finished second with a leap of 37-feet, 8¼ inches, the best finish among her East teammates and it was the third time she has broken the school record this year, having previously broken it at regionals and sectionals.
"I thought I really prepared well for what was coming (the excitement of state)," Harper said. "It was a personal best by 10 inches, so I was very excited about that (she hit it in the preliminaries).
The elements and her lack of experience didn't bother Harper at all.
"It was really windy out, but I was able to adjust pretty well. I'm only a sophomore, so it feels good to be here (at state) and getting up on the podium is amazing. I was really glad for the opportunity to do that (top-six make podium)."
Brookfield East coach Lisa Foss was beaming when asked about Harper.
"I cannot express how proud I am of Alisha," she said. "The entire coaching staff as well as her teammates were in awe ... her performance was outstanding especially for a sophomore. I definitely think that being at the state meet as a freshman helped her be prepared for competing in multiple events this time around.
"Immediately after the finals of the triple jump, Alisha went to compete in the preliminaries for the 300 low hurdles and she ended up finishing 21st with a time of 48.40. This was not her best performance of the season, but coming directly from a second-place finish in triple jump preliminaries and finals I can understand how she may not have been physically or mentally recovered at that moment."
Harper did come back later in the meet to help her mile relay team finish 15th with a personal best time of 4:07.15.
Senior Maddie Timm finished 13th in the 3,200-meters with a personal-best time of 11 minutes, 18.37 seconds.
"She should be proud of that time and finish as she continues her cross country and track and field career at UW-Madison in the fall," Foss said of Timm's performance in the 3,200. "Maddie currently holds the school record in the two-mile and once again broke it at state this year with this time."
Timm also anchored the 3,200 relay, which finished 16th in a personal-best time of 9:44.90 along with senior Kathleen Browne and sophomores Allyx Kvasnicka and Brianna Mathison.
"Kathleen Browne led off the relay with an outstanding first leg," Foss said. "She truly developed the strength and determination to compete at the state level. All of the girls did an amazing job."
The 1,600 relay finished 15th (4:07.15) of Harper, junior Katie Schwarz, senior Jenna Hatab and junior Molly Niemi and the 400 relay took 19th (50.99) behind freshman Jasmine Watson, senior Lauren Engelhart, Schwarz and junior Cheyenne Fischer.
The latter relay had a season-best time and finished better than their seed time.
The 1,600 relay team finished a place above where they finished last year and Hatab ran her fastest split of her track career and ended the meet on a high note.
"She did a wonderful job as a competitor and team captain," Foss said. "She will be missed. "Lauren Engelhart finished her senior year running on this relay every year since her freshman year and was able to lead the team to state this time around.
"Cheyenne Fischer also ran an outstanding split, making a noticeable gain in place as the team anchor. Her final leg was impressive to say the least.
"I look forward to have Jasmine, Katie and Cheyenne return next season."
Nina Dismukes, running in her final meet, finished 23rd in the 100 high hurdles (16.96).
"Nina has done a great job as a senior in the meets leading up to the state meet," Foss said. "She worked hard and stayed focused. Unfortunately, the state meet was intimidating for her being that it was her first time, so she didn't have her best race of the season.
"That being said, she did have an outstanding senior season and for her to qualify for the state meet at all is an accomplishment within itself."
The Spartans finished 33rd with eight points.
"This is a great accomplishment," Foss said. "Taking 16 girls to the state meet is an admirable accomplishment and my girls should be proud of how they did.
"We plan to continue working hard in the off-season to come back even stronger next year."
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