COLUMBUS – Friday morning and afternoon, two Scioto County athletes finished first and second at the OHSAA State Track and Field Meet held at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on the campus of Ohio State University. Wheelersburg senior Paige Emnett won the Division III girls’ discus throw with a school record throw of 139’ and Northwest sophomore Haidyn Wamsley finished as runner up in the Division II girls’ high jump competition with a height of 5’5.
Paige Emnett – Division III Discus State Champion
According to those close to Wheelersburg senior Paige Emnett, they believed that out of her two events she qualified for at this year’s state meet that the discus throw would be her second best event. That belief may be thrown out after the Pirate senior broke her personal record (also Wheelersburg’s school record) with a 139’ throw, good enough for first place at this year’s state meet.
“It’s honestly a really good feeling to say that I’ve won,” Emnett said. “I wasn’t coming in seeded first. Came out in prelims and threw a personal record of 130’ which also broke a school record. Then came out in finals and threw 139’, broke my personal record by nine feet. So it’s just really an amazing feeling knowing that my hard work’s paid off.”
Paid off it has. Emnett finished a full five inches ahead of Liberty-Benton senior Chloe Miller who finished with a distance of 138-07.
“Everyone’s been there 100% of the way for me,” Emnett said. “I usually tell everyone not to cheer at my meets because it throws me off. But today when I threw 139, everyone went crazy. They’ve definitely been there for me. Even when I asked them not to cheer, they still cheered and supported me. My coaches have been there every step of the way also.”
With the results of the shot put still pending, Emnett is hoping that she’s able to maintain her focus and excel at that event just as she did in the discus.
“I think it relieves a little bit of the pressure. I just have to stay focused and stay calm, make sure nothing gets to my head. But it definitely helps. Last year I threw disc and got last and had to immediately go into shot, so I think I was a little down on myself, but I just have to keep the right mindset going into that this year and try to do my best.”
Haidyn Wamsley – Division II High Jump State Runner-Up
Northwest sophomore Haidyn Wamsley has an incredibly bright future in track, as with her other three sports she participated in during each school year.
But the present is pretty bright too for Wamsley all things considered. At the Division II high jump event, Wamsley finished second overall amongst all competitors, good enough for a runner up finish in her first ever state meet.
“It feels good,” Wamsley said, never one to expect less of herself. “First was within reach, jumped the same height as the girl who won, but had one more miss than she did. But it still feels really good to accomplish this.”
Wamsley jumped at a max height of 5’5, the same as Peyton Bloomer of Oak Harbor. As Wamsley mentioned, Bloomer had just one less miss than Wamsley after the two battled it out for the top spot in the high jump event.
“It’s a lot of hard work,” Wamsley said. “Coming up here, performing well, jumping a 5’5, it’s a great feeling.”
As the stands and the track were packed with spectators rooting for their school’s representatives, Wamsley said it was a pretty unique experience having that many people there even though the district and regional meets had somewhat prepared her for the experience.
“Districts and regionals prepared me for it, but then again districts and regionals didn’t prepare me for it. There’s a lot of people everywhere so you have to stay that much more focused on what you came to do.”
Wamsley just so happened to be the only sophomore to earn a spot on the podium in Friday’s Division II state high jump competition. To say the future is bright for her would be a vast understatement.
“I’d really like to be able to get the school record for myself next year,” Wamsley said. “Hopefully we’re able to get first next year also.”
Wamsley did not qualify for the finals of the 100 meter hurdles event she also competed in Friday morning.
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