Taryn O’Neill won two gold medals in record time and was named the outstanding female performer at the B.C. championships. -Image: Oksana Lyesina

Golden, record-setting finale for O’Neill

Lake Country’s Taryn O’Neill wins 1,500 and 3,000 metres in record time at B.C. championships

Two gold medals, two new provincial records and the meet’s top award.

In her last high school track and field competition, Lake Country’s Taryn O’Neill went out in style, cruising to victory in both the 1,500 and 3,000 metres at the B.C. championships last weekend in Langley.

The George Elliot Secondary senior won gold in the 1,500 in a new provincial best time of four minutes 23.02 seconds, eclipsing the previous standard of 4:26.44, which had stood for 23 years.

In the 3,000, O’Neill made it 2-for-2, taking top spot in 9:24.82, smashing the three-year-old record by nearly 10 seconds (9:33.44).

“It was incredible to end high school sports on such a high,” said O’Neill, 17. “It’s rewarding to see what hard work and consistency can result in.”

For her efforts, O’Neill took home the award for the Outstanding Female Performance at provincials.

As for setting two new records, O’Neill was thrilled with the accomplishment but doesn’t expect either one to stand for long.

“We have so many strong, young girls in distance running and I can’t wait to see who breaks them next,” she said.

Last month in Kamloops, O’Neill won both the 1,500 and 3,000 metre events in record time at the Okanagan Zone championships.

O’Neill will next set her sights on the World U20 Championships in Finland. Last summer, she won silver for Canada in the 3,000 at the Pan American U20 Championships in Peru.

Other Kelowna medalists:

Aberdeen HallPhoebe Price-Roberts won gold in senior girls hammer with a toss of 53.38m to help her school to the B.C. girls ‘A’ team title for the second year in a row.

Adrian Price-Roberts won silver in junior boys pole vault with a leap of 3.20m.

Dr. Knox—Emma Cannan captured three medals in the junior girls division. Emma won silver in the junior girls 400m (57.89) and the 200m (25.62) and bronze in the 100m (12.62).

Kelowna Christian—Michael Shriemer won gold in the Grade 8 boys 1,500m (4:25.45) and 3000m (9.21.56).

KSS—Bryn Walsh won gold in the senior girls pole vault (2.95m), silver in the 100m (12.28) and bronze in the 200m (25.50.)

Nolan Ulm won bronze in the junior boys 100m (11.60).

OKM—Nolan Humphries won silver in Grade 8 boys 200m (24.44) and bronze in the 100m (12.10).

Muriel Stroda won silver in senior girls heptathlon (last weekend, 3994 points) and silver in 100m hurdles (15.91).

Alexander Gross won bronze in senior boys 100m (11.14), while Nathan Loo won bronze in Grade 8 boys 200m hurdles (28.70).

Kelowna hosts in 2019

Kelowna will serve as host city for the B.C. high school track and field championships next June.

Approximately 2,400 athletes are expected to compete at the Apple Bowl, making it the one of the largest sporting events the city has ever hosted.

The track community is among several local sports groups and organizations would like to see several upgrades made to the Apple Bowl.

The city plans to resurface the facility’s track this summer, but the commissioner of track and field for the Okanagan Valley Sport Athletic Association said more needs to be done.

“It needs new washroom facilities, much improved parking, improved interior fencing, a new javelin runway outside the fence, new discus-hammer cages, etc.,” said Chris Frehlick. “The meet can become a legacy for the community that way.”

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