After four seasons of playing second fiddle to the Walnut Grove Gators, the W.J. Mouat Hawks track and field team broke through in a big way at the Upper Fraser Valley championships.
The Hawks won the regional title for the first time since 2006, and they did so in decisive fashion. They out-pointed the four-time defending champion Gators in both the overall (508-431) and senior (295-192) divisions, while adding a third-place finish in the junior category.
Mouat coach Cameron Smith attributed his team’s surge in fortune to the recent integration of the football team’s speed and agility program with the track squad.
“We’ve got all the football players coming out,” he said. “That’s a big part of the reason we had three 4×400 relay teams make the top five in the Upper Fraser Valleys.
“The kids just all came together and did what they had to do to win the championship.”
The Hawks were hardly the only success story at the Upper Valleys, which ran Wednesday and Thursday at Rotary Stadium. The Abbotsford Christian Knights were third in both the overall and senior standings, while finishing fourth at the junior level. The Yale Lions showed potential with a fourth-place senior result.
“The other Abbotsford schools did so well,” Smith pointed out. “Yale’s a good up-and-coming program. And (head coach) Jack Boersma at Abby Christian is a gentleman, and he always seems to put together a good team.”