Hilhi's Mitchell wears state crown in the 100 meters
They say, "you win some, you lose some." Hilhi's Daekwon Mitchell did both at last week's OSAA 5A State Track and Field Championships in Eugene, but despite finishing a respectable third in the 200 meters, Mitchell surprised even himself by winning the 100 meters and setting a personal record with a time of 10.96 in the process.
"Winning meant a lot and it wasn't something I was really expecting," said Mitchell. "My main goal was to get the 10.9, but it definitely meant a lot to win the championship, and it was a very big surprise and something I definitely didn't think would happen."
After finishing second at the Northwest Oregon Conference Championships a week prior, Mitchell ran the fastest time in the preliminaries in Eugene, and due to such said he was relaxed before and during the final.
"I was mentally prepared, especially with running the fastest time in the prelims, so I knew it was something I could do," Mitchell said. "It was just a matter of getting a good start from the blocks and finishing the race."
It was a tight race in the beginning and throughout the first half, but as things sped to a finish, Mitchell pulled away and when he hit the finish line was pleasantly surprised with what had transpired both against the competition, and on the clock in his last race as a Hillsboro Spartan.
"After the race I was in shock," said Mitchell. "I was excited and 10.9 was something I always wanted to do in high school, so to do it in my last race was pretty exciting."
Despite the third in the 200, Mitchell was for the most part pleased with his performance. He was also excited in the wake of the experience of running at Hayward Field, where he said enjoys racing and always expects fast times.
"I love running at Hayward," he said. "I always go there expecting to run personal bests there. Everyone is screaming in your ear, it's loud, it's just a great place to compete."
Now, with his Hilhi tenure coming to an end, Mitchell plans to attend and run track at Lane Community College in Eugene, and hopefully beyond if he continues to excel on the track.
"I'm excited to get down there, and hopefully I can run there for two years and maybe somewhere else after," said Mitchell.
Mitchell also ran as part of the Spartans' 4x100 relay team consisting of Daniel Popovych, Blake Bodrak-Crandal and Isaiah DiRienzo, that placed eighth. Also, Hilhi senior Naomi Johnson placed eighth in the discus behind event winner Haley Smith (147-06) of Summit with a throw of 113-09.
Sandy won the boys team competition with 86 points, while Marist was second with 62 and Summit third with 58. Hilhi finished 14th with 17 points.
On the girls side, Summit ran away with the competition scoring 156 points, while Bend was second with 89 and Hermiston third with 50.