She can do it all on the track
Havre Daily News/Daniel Horton
Havre High senior Sammy Evans clears the high jump bar during a recent track meet at the Havre Middle School track. By adding sprints and relays to being one of the top jumpers in Montana, Evans has become one of the most versatile track and field athletes in Blue Pony history. The Class A state meet gets under way Friday in Bozeman.
It turns out that Havre High standout Sammy Evans can't just outjump the competition; the high-flying senior can also outrun them.
Evans is one state meet away from completing a very successful prep track and field career. Over the last four years she has dominated the long jump, triple jump and high jump events. And while fans and coaches saw glimpses of Evans having what it takes to be a great runner as well, it wasn't until just recently Evans also began to garner attention for her times, not distances.
"Yeah it was kind of a joke, " Evans said. "I just said, 'hey I am going to run the 100 meter, ' and that was it. I decided to do it about 10 minutes before it started, but after I ran it one of the coaches came up to me and told me that I should keep running it because it was actually a good time. "
Evans has run for the Blue Ponies in the past, but not to this extent and not really with this level of success.
As a freshman she ran the 1,600 meters and the 400 meters. As a sophomore she ran just the 400. As a junior, Evans ran the 200 just four times before grabbing a No. 1 finish at the divisional meet and then competing in the 200 at the state meet. This year has been a unique situation for Evans. While at the Great Falls meet, Evans wasn't competing in her usual events; instead she "jokingly" decided to try something new. And just minutes before the gun fired, Evans took on the 100-meter and won, turning in a time of 13.2 seconds.
Since Evans' first time running the 100 this season, she has also turned in 100-meter times of 13.3, 12.8, 12.9 and 13.09 seconds. Her time of 12.8 came at the Top 10 meet in Glasgow, and her time of 12.9 came in the preliminaries last weekend in Havre at the Central A divisional meet.
Evans had an idea she would do OK at the 100 and 200 sprints and it paid off. Evans took second in both distances last weekend, and will add the two running events to her state lineup next weekend in Bozeman.
"I hoped I would be fast, " Evans said. "I mean, I thought I was pretty fast in basketball and volleyball. And runways for jumps are kind of the same, they are shorter, but if I could get speed on that, I though I might do OK in the sprints. And running the 400 takes a lot out of you, that's why I didn't do the sprints before. And when I ran that, I always had five events, so when I stopped running it, I had to fill that spot with something else. So now I run the 100. "
The success Evans has recently found in the sprints has greatly benefitted the Blue Ponies this season. But it is also getting Evans ready for the next level. Running for the University of Montana next year, Evans will most likely compete in the heptathlon. The heptathlon is seven events in two days, meaning the more events she is familiar with, hopefully the more success she will have as a college athlete.
"I think doing a bunch of different events will help, " Evans said. "It will be good going to college having done some different events. So I don't mind that I started running the 100 because of a joke. It is still for the fun of it, so if I do good, I do good, but if I don't, it still isn't the end of the world. "
Evans will compete at the Class A state meet this weekend in Bozeman.