Track and field

High school track and field: Immaculate Heart jumpers peaking at right time for state

2014-04-11T00:00:00Z High school track and field: Immaculate Heart jumpers peaking at right time for stateBy Derek Evans For the Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

For years, Immaculate Heart’s track and field team has been forced to do more with less.

The Knights practice on what is more dirt than field, and have just less than a dozen athletes on the team. But that hasn’t stopped the team from boasting a pair of state title contenders in senior Justine Mona and sophomore Amity Brown.

Make that Amity “Hostility” Brown.

“When I coached her in volleyball I changed her name to Hostility to toughen her up,” coach Tom Danehy said. “She became one of the best players in the conference and now she’s the best high jumper.”

Brown has won the high jump in every meet she’s competed in this year, an impressive stat when you consider she didn’t even come out for the team a year ago.

Danehy is equally happy with Mona’s showings this season.

“She did track last year,” he said. “But for some reason this year she has just exploded.”

Both shined at the eight-team San Manuel April Qualifier on Wednesday. Mora won the 100- and 200-meter runs, the 300 hurdles and triple jump. Brown won the high jump, placed second in both the 200 and discus and finished third in the long jump.

The Star caught up with Immaculate Heart’s two standouts this week:

Amity Brown

Track experience: Ran track for four years until seventh grade, but stopped for two years before returning this year.

Events: 400, 200, 400 relay, discus, long jump and high jump. Her high jump of 5 feet is tied for the best in Division IV this year.

Favorites: The high jump and the 400 relay.

Goals before the state meet: “To get as fast as Justine, because Justine is really fast. Also my goal in the high jump is to jump 5 feet 6 inches.”

When I’m not on the track, I’m: “Playing volleyball and basketball sometimes.”

Coach’s call: “When I met her, she said she jumped 4-10 in middle school. I didn’t believe her and the first day we got out here she went 4-11.”

Justine Mona

Track experience: This is Mona’s third season competing. She began running as a sophomore.

Events: Mona has competed in almost every event, but there is one she still wants to do: the 1,600.

Favorites: 100, 200, 300 hurdles, triple jump and long jump.

Goals before the state meet: “To do my best in all events and to push my team along to state.”

When I’m not on the track, I’m: “Involved in my church a lot and just doing anything to keep me busy.”

Coach’s call: “Justine is definitely the best in the triple jump. It’s an odd event and it’s really hard to master. Justine is No. 2 in the state (in Division IV) in that event.”

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