Jannie Kamara of the Pickerington High School North girls track and field team heard how far she threw the discus during the Division I state meet June 3 at Ohio State and didn't hold back.
When her distance of 139 feet, 7 inches was announced, Kamara high-stepped in joy from the ring back to the bullpen where she fraternized with the other competitors.
The senior still had a long day ahead of her, but that personal-best throw ended up providing possibly the biggest highlight of her prep career.
Kamara, who was the only state competitor for the girls team, placed fifth in the discus with her throw of 139-7, and later in the day she finished seventh in the shot put (40-10 3/4) to give North six points.
The Panthers tied three teams for 36th behind champion Cincinnati Withrow (58) as 62 teams scored.
"I wanted a 140, but I am happy with a 139(-7)," said Kamara, a Miami University commit who placed sixth at state in the discus last year.
"Height was my biggest problem. If I'd have gotten more height, I'd have thrown further, but I am still happy with this. I was nowhere close to the top, but I felt like this year was easier just having been here before."
Kamara did better than she expected in the shot put with a personal-best throw. Admitting she prefers discus to shot put, she took a self-deprecating approach to the latter event.
"Shot put is not my better event," Kamara said. "I don't know how I qualified (for state), but I am here. I wasn't sure if I'd get 40 feet, but that was my goal. That's what I was hoping for, and I am extremely happy with that."
The boys team had two competitors at state but did not score. Thomas Worthington (36) won the team championship as 80 teams scored.
Senior Ben Pierce finished ninth in the pole vault (14-0) and junior Ashwin Briggs was 14th in the 1,600 meters (4 minutes, 22.66 seconds).
Pierce cleared 14-0 on his first attempt but was emotional after missing all three tries at 14-4, one inch higher than the personal-best he set April 14 during the Elk Relays at Centerville.
"I felt good all week. I wasn't nervous coming up here like a lot of people say you are going to be, but I was excited," Pierce said. "I just didn't do my best (June 3). I think I did average (June 3). I hate to use that word again because I have before, but I think I fell back to average. I don't know that I have peaked since early in the season. It's just upsetting not to do better."
OCC-Ohio Division championships for Kamara in the discus (125-4) and junior Jessie Kinder in the pole vault (10-6) led North to 65 points and fourth place in the league meet that concluded May 13 at Olentangy Orange, behind Gahanna (165), Pickerington Central (150) and Lancaster (85) and ahead of Reynoldsburg (42) and Grove City (16).
Pierce won the pole vault (13-0) in the league meet as the boys finished fifth (43) behind Gahanna (147), Central (143), Reynoldsburg (97) and Lancaster (77) and ahead of Grove City (16).
Titles for Briggs in the 1,600 (4:23.98) and Pierce in the pole vault (14-0) led the boys to a third-place finish in the 15-team district 1 meet that concluded May 20 at Hilliard Darby behind champion Orange (124). Senior Mallory Harr won the 100 hurdles in a school-record 14.78 and Kamara finished first in the discus (125-9) to lead the girls to seventh place (58) of 16 teams behind Dublin Coffman (94).
In the regional meet May 24 and 26 at North, the boys finished 15th (13) behind champion Thomas (73) as 37 teams scored and the girls were 12th (23) behind champion Gahanna (97) as 35 teams scored.
Several key contributors from both teams are eligible to return.
The expected returnees for the boys include Briggs, juniors Tyrik Carter (hurdles, sprints) and Kavaughn Robinson (sprints), sophomore Jake Prestileo (distance) and freshmen Matt Duvall (distance) and Harper Moore (distance). Returnees for the girls should include juniors Skylar Briggs (distance) and Brenna Burke (hurdles, sprints), sophomores Mickale Bates (sprints) and Avery Hart (jumps, sprints) and freshman Brianna Bowden (sprints).