Cole-Johnson and Zablocki reach top of the podium for Carlton

Photo Courtesy of Marc Smith/Discover Moose Jaw Carlton's Emily Cole-Johnson races towards the finish line in the junior girls' 100-metre dash on Friday in Moose Jaw.

Rishchynski picks up bronze medal in pole vault

An extra year of waiting was worth it for Emily Cole-Johnson.

After missing out on the 2018 SHSAA track and field meet in Prince Albert due to a pulled hamstring, the Carlton student made the most of her first trip to the provincials as she earned two medals in the junior division over the weekend in Moose Jaw.

“It was a pretty amazing feeling,” Cole-Johnson said. “I had put in a lot of hard work over the last year and to be able to compete at the provincials itself was fantastic.

“There’s definitely a lot more people there than what I’m used to for track meets, but I just kept my focus up and make sure that I had the right mindset mentally during the event.”

Cole-Johnson ran of time of 12.90 seconds in the 100-metre dash on Friday to earn the gold medal in a closely contested race with Emnet Nixon of Regina Miller.

“I had a really good time in my heat so I was a little nervous coming into the final as I was ranked first,” Cole-Johnson said.

“There was a lot of good competition in the race so it was a little intimating at first, but I was able to calm my nerves and have a really good time.”

Cole-Johnson followed that up on Saturday with a silver medal in the 200m dash as she ran a time of 26.47 seconds around the track at Gutheridge Field.

“The girl who finished first is a pretty amazing runner,” said Cole-Johnson, who finished second to Borden’s Savannah Sutherland and her record-setting time of 24.89 seconds.

“I was motivated to try and be as close to her as I could and get a good time, which is what I was able to do.”

Photo Courtesy of Marc Smith/Discover Moose Jaw
Storm Zablocki battles with Ryder Hardy of Saskatoon Marion Graham and Charles Sawi of Saskatoon Holy Cross in the midget boys’ 100m final Friday.

Carlton’s Storm Zablocki also entered the provincial record books in Moose Jaw as he ran a time of 11.25 in his midget boys 100m heat race, which broke the previous mark of 11.36 seconds that was set by Adam Paslawski of Saskatoon Holy Cross in 2012.

However, things didn’t go as planned in the final on Friday evening as he ended up in fourth place and missed out on a medal.

“It was a day of ups and downs,” Zablocki said. “I certainly wasn’t expecting to set a record in the heat race, as that’s something I thought you would see happen to someone in a final, so that was a definitely a surprise.

“When it came to the final, I just overthought things and my nerves got the best of me a little bit. That was definitely a weird experience for me, but it’s something that I can learn from for next year.”

Zablocki was able to rebound from that result the following day as he took home the 200m midget boys title with a time of 23.03 seconds.

“I was a lot more relaxed and I was able to do a much better job of keeping myself calm,” Zablocki said. “I pushed myself through the entire race and I think that’s what allowed me to get the win.”

Photo Courtesy of Patricia Taylor
Jonathan Rishchynski poses with the bronze medal that he won in the midget boys pole vault event.

Jonathan Rishchynski also reached the podium for the Crusaders as he finished in a tie for third place with Ethan Morhart of Regina Winston Knoll in the midget boys pole vault.

“I wasn’t even expecting to get a medal so to win a bronze medal was a really nice surprise,” said Rishchynski, who reached a height of 2.40 metres. 

“It was a great experience at the provincials and I’m looking forward to hopefully going again next year.”

According to coach Patricia Taylor, it was also a successful meet for the entire Crusaders team as the young squad got a taste of what life is like at the provincials.

“You go from our district meet where there are about 200 athletes and then you have over 1,000 kids in Moose Jaw, which makes for quite a loud atmosphere,” Taylor said.

“I thought the entire group did a great job of getting used to those challenges and also embracing the team aspect of track and field, as they were cheering each other throughout the weekend.”