Two Mountaineers crowned state champions; girls take fourth place

Rainier ladies top C2BL team in Yakima


The 2024 Rainier High School track and field season was one of perseverance and resilience. The Mountaineers faced a myriad of injuries throughout the season, but on the biggest stage at the 2B state championships in Yakima, they muscled through to the finish line.

Two junior athletes in particular — Josh Meldrum and Ella Marvin — put together gritty performances at Zaepfel Stadium to earn state championships in their respective events. Meldrum, just three weeks removed from being loaded into an ambulance after throwing up at the Central 2B League championships and battling kidney stones, set a new personal best time in the 100 meters, winning the crown at 11.12 seconds on Saturday, May 25. He also set a PR in the long jump with a leap of 20 feet, 9.5 inches. Both marks are the second-highest in school history.

“I had to go out and show it,” Meldrum told The Chronicle sports reporter Zach Martin. “I’ve been struggling with kidney stones, and I pushed myself through it. I was almost going to cry. I’m probably still going to.”

Marvin, the reigning 2B pole vault champion going into this weekend’s state championships, battled a knee injury and did not debut until April 11. Her desire to repeat as state champion pushed her through as she took first in all but one event since then, including at state with a jump of 10 feet, 6 inches, to accomplish her goal. 

“I would have gone against doctors orders,” Marvin told Martin. “I love pole vaulting so much. I can’t sit out. Repeating the state championship is too big of a deal. It is non-negotiable. I can heal during the summer.”

Marvin helped the Rainier girls take fourth place in state with 55 points, the highest mark among C2BL teams. Junior Acacia Murphy earned a second-place medal in the high jump with a 5-2 leap and battled through an ankle injury to take seventh in the 100-meter finals with a time of 13:28. Sophomore Jazzlyn Shumate set a PR in the 400 meters with a 1:01.77, en route to a fifth-place finish.

Junior Madison Ingram took eighth in the 800 meters, 12th in the mile run and eighth in the two-mile run. Ingram ran the mile while wearing one shoe, one of the oddities that led to head coach Rob Henry calling it one of the “weirdest meets I’ve been around.”

“I am absolutely ecstatic,” Henry told Martin. “Just seemed like left over right, things happened. Kids kept going. It was fantastic.”

Sophomore Anika Plowman set a PR in the 300-meter hurdles to finish fifth with a time of 49.09, nearly two seconds better than her preliminary time. She, along with Ingram, Shumate and Angelica Askey, earned the second-place medal in the 4x400 relay, placing behind only overall state champion St. George’s. 

Rainier’s throwers had a strong outing in Yakima, particularly junior Janess Blackburn, who set PRs in both shot put (32-4) and discus (121-7). She earned third in discus and 11th in shot put, while Haleigh Hanson took fifth in shot put (134-11.5) and fourth in discus (120-10). Sophomore Zaylee Bravo also broke her own best mark in discus with a 107-foot throw to place seventh. 

Meldrum was the only top-five finisher for the boys, but Matthew Kenney and Zander Peck medaled in discus and javelin, respectively. Zach Hamilton also finished in the top 10 in the mile and two-mile events.