KCI student breaks record in WCSSAA high jump event
CAMBRIDGE — Emma Lemieux is no longer getting by on talent alone.
The Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate student credits outside coaching and her own dedication for taking her to greater heights and a record-breaking, firstplace performance Thursday at the Waterloo County/District 8 track and field championship.
Lemieux won the WCSSAA junior girls’ high jump competition at Jacob Hespeler Secondary School with a 1.65-metre effort on her final attempt, topping the previous mark of 1.58 metres, set by Galt’s Ashlyn Beckman in 2011.
“I realized last year that I kind of had natural jumping ability and I thought it would be kind of nice to see how much better I could become with training,” said the personal Lemieux.
“To set the record, it felt really nice because it was a personal best and it came on my final attempt. I really didn’t think I would make it but I really pushed it and it worked out.”
Lemieux finished in a tie for second at last year’s WCSSAA championship, clearing 1.48 metres with minimal instruction. She made it all the way to the all-Ontario (OFSAA) championship and finished fifth with a 1.50-metre jump. She joined forces with Dermott Smith of First Attempt Jumps Academy last summer and has enjoyed steady progress since.
The natural ability, she believes, comes from her first love.
Lemieux started dancing at the age of two and has been a competitive dancer for years. She trains out of the Evolve Dance Centre and lists jazz and contemporary as her favourite styles of dance, although she also performs ballet, hip-hop and pointe.
“It’s just something to keep me out of trouble and keep me fit with my friends,” she laughed.
“It’s something I really enjoy and I think it helps with my jumping.”
Lemieux will seek even better numbers next week when the high school track and field season continues with the Central Western Ontario championship. The top four finishers from WCSSAA events and the top two
from District 8 will advance to CWOSSA, which is scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday in Cambridge.
Records continued to fall Thursday during the second and final day of the competition at the WCSSAA-District 8 championship and team championships were also decided when the numbers were tallied.
Cameron Heights won the WCSSAA overall championship with 674 points, to finish ahead of Sir John A. Macdonald (617.5) and Huron Heights (394), and St. Benedict (630) won the District 8 title, ahead of St. Mary’s (621) and Resurrection (553).
Cameron Heights led the WCSSAA boys’ division with 352.5, ahead of SJAM (258) and Huron Heights (198), and St. Mary’s (377) finished ahead of Resurrection (320) and Woodland (275) in District 8.
SJAM (359.5) won the WCSSAA girls’ division ahead of Cameron Heights (321.5) and Huron Heights (196), and St. Benedict (363) dominated District 8 ahead of St. David (265) and St. Mary’s (244).
Alex Webb of St. Benedict had a meet to remember, setting a District 8 junior girls’ javelin (35.70 metres) record to go along with a record performances in the shot put (12.80 metres) and a firstplace finish in the 80-metre hurdles.
St. Benedict’s Nana-Afia Agyeipah, who lost her shot put record to Webb, replaced it with a record-setting performance in the senior discus (33.37 metres) and then broke her own record in the senior shot put (11.29 metres).
Abigail Passy of Cameron Heights is the new record holder in the WCSSAA midget girls’ pole vault (2.75 metres), Riley Forbes of Jacob Hespeler set a new mark in the WCSSAA senior boys’ shot put (14.42 metres), and Callum Parkinson set a new mark in the District 8 senior boys’ high jump (1.88 metres).
Elmira’s Owen Read, who won the WCSSAA senior boys’ 100metre race Wednesday, enjoyed a record-breaking performance in the 200-metre race, finishing in 21.86 seconds. The previous mark of 22.13 was set two years ago by Cameron Heights’ Joey Daniels, who now attends Princeton University. Tyra Boug of Huron Heights set a new WCSSAA record in a 200-metre dash preliminary race and saw it erased a few hours later by Tomi Bamigbade of Cameron Heights. Boug clocked in at 25.36 in the morning and actually cut that number down to 25.09 in the afternoon. Bamigbade improved from 27.80 to 24.92 in the afternoon. See galasso.ca for full results.
Emma Lemieux, right, runs the second leg of the senior girls’ 4x100. Lemieux credits her years in dance for her strong legs and athletic skills — and her recent high jump training. She set a record in the high jump.