July 1, 2016

Intermittent clouds

Burke repeats as national champ

NEW YORK —Sometimes déjà vu is a bad thing, but for Taylor Burke Friday night it was a very, very good thing.

The Medina standout won the New Balance Indoor National Champion-ship in the high jump for the second year in a row, competing against a stellar field at The Armory Track and Field Center in New York, N.Y.

“It feels great,” Burke said in a phone interview. “I definitely think winning a second one is a lot sweeter. It really means a lot.”

And for the second year in a row, Burke cleared the bar at 5-feet, 10¾-inches – the same height she re-corded for last year’s crown. The only difference this time was that she waited until her final attempt to clear the mark and steal the show in the opening day of the meet.

“It took away from my confidence a little bit,” she said of getting it on her third try. “But it felt good and once I hit the pit, I knew that I made it.”

While 5-10¾ was her winning jump, she secured the crown by nailing her first attempt at 5-8, leaving three other competitors —including North Canton Hoover standout Madeline Morrow — with the tall task of matching the height to advance.

Like a year ago, the win gives Burke momentum heading into next week’s state indoor meet and for the outdoor season which opens later this month.

“I really thought that was exactly the jump I needed to get the job done,” Burke said. “This feels really good. It’s only my third meet since the end of basketball and there was a lot of pres-sure being the national champ from last year.

“Being the national champ is as good as it gets.”

Contact Dan Brown at sports@medina-gazette.com.