The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

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Gifton Okoronkwo



In his senior year, Gifton Okoronkwo won the state title for triple jump.

It was his first year on track.

It turned out that he had a knack for his newly found sport. He started trying out and messing with track only last summer.

He was convinced to become a triple jumper by two other triple jumpers – his sister Chinne Okoronkwo, who also won state in triple jump, and his friend Tye Esparza, who won 8th in triple jump.

“The number one thing that helped me was the support at home with my family, the great sibling support with my sister, I had great support from all my coaches, and from other contestants from other teams and from our team,” Okoronkwo said. With this he made it to state which he thought was a lot of fun.

He liked the new experience of state. Okoronkwo said it was a lot better than the national competition because state had more of a family aspect because he knew most of the people there. He also has teammates that want him to do his best and he wants them to do their best too. At nationals, he was just trying it out to see if he liked it and did not really know anyone there.

This year he had one advantage not many athletes have: his sister to help him out. He says that his sister is extremely beneficial because she is a real veteran and can give him tips plus watch his marks. He also finds it helpful because he can take his game home and talk to his sister about what he can do to become a better jumper and new techniques he can try. This year track has not just made him a better jumper but he also thinks it has made him a better person.

“It has improved my focus and my work ethic a lot I know I have to work real hard to get where I am and where I want to be.”

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With his new found track talent, many wondered if track is something he plans to do in the future. “I do plan on doing track when I leave Mountlake Terrace,” he said. He also wants to pursue other interests in engineering too.

Okoronkwo is involved in many other clubs and sports besides track.

These extracurricular activities include DECA, in which he was the treasurer for, Mix-It-Up club, robotics, which he was in all four of his years at MTHS.

Okoronkwo also played basketball in his freshman year, JV soccer during his freshman year and varsity soccer during his sophomore and junior years.

Okoronkwo also shined in the classroom. He took AP classed, such as AP calculus and physics. He did all of this while maintaining a near 3.0 GPA.

Okoronkwo could not have asked for a better senior year. He said he has no regrets at Mountlake Terrace and is excited to leave. He is looking forward to a wonderful track filled future.

“I think all great things must come to an end and I’m ready for the future.”

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Luke Thurber, Sports Co-Editor
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