Lakewood Ranch High sophomore Talia Falco won a pair of district crowns at the Class 3A-District 9 meet April 17, in Seffner.
Falco set a new personal record of 15.98 seconds to win the 100-meter hurdles. She also set a mark of 16-05 to win the long jump.
Falco finished second in the high jump (5-02) and third in the triple jump (34-08)
As a result of her four top-four finishes, Falco earned a berth in the Class 3A Region 3 meet April 25, at Charlotte High, where she will compete in all four events.
"It’s really exciting to be a district champion. I’m only a sophomore, so to have qualified for the regional meet is an amazing accomplishment. It’s nice to be able to represent the school because track has always been big at Lakewood.
I’m really proud of my 100-meter hurdles championship. I only started doing hurdles last year. My mom did hurdles, and my sister does hurdles.
I like running the 100 hurdles because it’s a shorter distance and you don’t have to run as far. Last year, my coach attempted to put me in the 300 hurdles and I didn’t really want to do it. It’s a very different race. It’s so hard.
I thought the hurdles would be scary, but when I went over them the first time it was a lot easier than it looked.
I really want to set a personal record in the high jump because I feel like I’m so close. I just broke my PR for hurdles at the district meet, so I want to try and PR again at the regional meet.
My mom ran hurdles in college and eventually became a heptathlete. She’s always told me to do my best and, even if I fall, to get back up and finish the race.
If I had to pick a different event, I would want to try to throw. I think it would be fun to learn how to throw.
It would be really exciting to qualify for the state meet. I think it would just be an accomplishment to make it there. I wouldn’t have to win anything. Just to make it that far would be amazing. "
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