Local teen track athletes earn All-America honors at US Junior Olympics

Four South Sound high school athletes — Ryan Chase, James Rodeman, Lane Russell and Peyton Russell — earned All-America honors at the United States Junior Olympic National Track and Field Championships this week with their performances in Humble, Texas.

Chase, an incoming senior at Capital High School, placed second in the 17-18 age group for decathlon with a career-best 6,421 points, and Rodeman, an incoming senior at Yelm, was fifth with 6,003 points. Chase placed first in three of the 10 events: long jump (21 feet, 11 1/2 inches), shot put (42-9), and javelin (152-0).

Chase won the Class 2A boys long jump and triple jump state titles at Star Track XXXII, and also was the state champion in the decathlon last month.

“He had a 1,200-point improvement in one year,” said Yelm track and field coach Mike Strong, who worked with both Chase and Rodeman leading up to nationals. “He’s gotten much, much better.”

Princeton-bound ussell, the 2013 2A state triple jump champion who recently graduated from Tumwater, rebounded from a hamstring injury that kept him out of postseason competition to place fourth in the triple jump (48-10 1/4) for boys ages 17-18. His sister, Peyton, an incoming junior at Tumwater and the 2A girls long jump and triple jump state champion, jumped 39-1 on her last attempt to place second in the girls 15-16 triple jump.


Recently graduated Timberline High catcher Benny Kaleiwahea accepted a preferred walk-on roster spot on Washington State’s baseball team this week. Kaleiwahea, who batted .368 with 26 RBIs and threw out 11 would-be base stealers to lead the Blazers to the Class 3A regional this spring, had signed with Lower Columbia College, coached by former North Thurston standout Eddie Smith.