Ganado's Haven earns 3200-meter state title

By Oree Foster
Special to the Times

WINDOW ROCK, May 15, 2014

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(Times photo – Donovan Quintero)

Ganado Lady Hornet Daangoiina Haven (863) hands off the baton to teammate Nikesha Eagleman in the 4x800-meter race on Saturday in Mesa, Ariz. Both runners competed in the 3200s with Haven winning the event with a time of 11:13.49 while Eagleman placed fourth.

Ganado Lady Hornets sophomore Daangoiina Haven's hard work, determination and desire propelled her to earn the 3200-meter State Championship at the Arizona Division III State Track & Field meet at Mesa Community College.

Running one of her best races during her young career, Haven crossed the finish line in 11:13.49, outlasting a field of top runners.

"It's a great feeling to win the state championship," Haven said. "I worked hard all season long to get where I am today. I was determined to win the state championship. I kind of surprised myself because I was ranked sixth going into the race. I had the desire in all my events I competed in."

Haven said when she stepped to the starting line, she was nervous. She said the field had outstanding runners.

"I like the longer races," she said. "I ran against the top competitors throughout the season. I knew what I needed to do."

Through the first seven laps, Haven said she felt fine. She said she was staying the leaders.

"I was in fourth place as we began the eighth lap," she said. "I still had energy with about 300-meters left in the race."

Tuba City's Briana Loughren led the field, with Window Rock's Chamique DuBoise, Nikesha Eagleman and Haven close by with 200-meters remaining. Haven began her kick. Haven past Eagleman and DuBoise. On the final turn, Haven sped up and past a fading Loughren. Haven sprinted down the stretch, followed by DuBoise.

Haven crossed the finish line as State Champion and DuBoise followed as State Runner-Up. Haven was three seconds faster than DuBoise.

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