Photo finish

Ganado junior outlast Chinle runner for 1600 title

SHOW LOW, Ariz.

Navajo Times | Adron Gardner
Chinle Wildcat Alisia Honyumptewa, left, and Ganado Hornet Janaya McIntosh struggle across the finish line in the girls varsity 1600-meter race during the Cougar Invitational track meet in Show Low, Arizona April 14.  McIntosh edged Honyumptewa to the finish with a winning time of 5:44.92.

Janaya McIntosh has a hard time believing that she has a strong finishing kick.

The Ganado junior may have to rethink that as she outsprinted Chinle’s Alisia Honyumptewa in the 1600-meter race at the Cougar Invitational at Show Low High School last Friday afternoon.

“I really doubted myself at first because my kick is the weakest part of my running,” McIntosh said. “I don’t know what pushed me but all I wanted to do was try and qualify for state.”

Unfortunately she missed the AIA automatic state qualifying mark by over 10 seconds but she did set a new personal record, crossing the finish line in 5:39.92.

“I am glad she ran with me because she helped me beat my PR by 10 seconds,” McIntosh said of Honyumptewa, who was clocked in at 5:39.96 in the photo finish.

With the state track meet set for May 5-6 at Mesa Community College, McIntosh is hoping to bring her time down in the final two meets of the regular season.

“I think I can still shave some seconds off my time,” she said.

McIntosh was Ganado’s high-point athlete as she helped the 4×800 relay team to a first place finish of 10:44.87. She placed second in the 3200. In the 3200, she ran a 12:44.44, losing to St. Michael’s Ali Upshaw, who recorded a 12:29.42.

“We have the pieces to do well in the 4×800,” McIntosh said. “We really work well as a team.”

The Lady Hornets finished the 13-team meet in third place with 83 points.

Ganado also got a pair of second place efforts turned in by Jazmaine Youvella-Platt (13.67) in the 100 and Esther Beck (2:33.46) in the 800 while hurdler Deana Curley placed third in the 300 hurdles (51.56) and fourth in the 100 hurdles (18.49).

“We’re real strong in the long distance but we have other athletes that have a chance to qualify for state,” Ganado coach Anna James said.

James said the 4×800 boys and girls team are both seeded in the Top 10 but she would like to get a few more relay teams qualified.

“Our 4×100 and 4×400 is right in there,” James said.

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Categories: Track & Field

About Author

Quentin Jodie

Quentin Jodie is the Sports Editor for the Navajo Times. He started working for the Navajo Times in February 2010 and was promoted to the Sports Editor position at the end of summer in 2012. Previously, he wrote for the Gallup Independent. Reach him at qjodie@navajotimes.com