Joseph Earns Bronze Medal At Meet Of Champions

Kisdyante Joseph (left) and Emilee Mabry (right) stand for a photo with their coach, Alanna Nulph at the conclusion of the NCS Meet of Champions in Berkeley./Photo courtesy of Alanna Nulph.

Kisdyante Joseph (left) and Emilee Mabry (right) stand for a photo with their coach, Alanna Nulph at the conclusion of the NCS Meet of Champions in Berkeley./Photo courtesy of Alanna Nulph.

Advances to California State Finals


The Hoopa Valley High School Track Team fielded two athletes at the North Coast Section Meet of Champions over Memorial Day weekend. The event was held in Edwards Stadium at the UC Berkeley campus.

Junior Kisdyante Joseph and senior Emilee Mabry are the latest HVHS athletes to make an appearance at the Meet of Champions, and both represented themselves and their school well.

Emilee Mabry competed in discus on Saturday morning, and started out the day ranked next to last in a field of 24 athletes. However, she proved herself to be a true veteran of the sport, and moved up the final ranking to number 17.

“Emilee has been competing in the throws since she was in sixth grade. She is by far my most experienced thrower, and I can always rely on her experience to push her past her nervousness during a highly competitive meet such as this. Other athletes choked under the pressure of competing in the big cage, and while I could see that she was nervous, she remained steady.” Coach, Alanna Nulph, said. “I’m very proud of her and all that she’s given to HVHS as a thrower. She’s been through multiple coaches until I was able to train her, and she’s always been a true sportsman.”

Emilee has verbally committed to attending College of the Redwoods, and competing in the throws there as well. She joins other Hoopa athletes Priscilla Masten, Naishian Richards, Travis Perry and 2017’s HDN Discus Champion Chris Hunter to compete under the Redwoods banner.

“Emilee was recruited by College of the Redwoods for her promise as an athlete. I have no doubt that the throws coach of CR will foster her growth further. Coach Eric Wright is a former Shasta College and All-West Region hammer and shotput thrower for NCAA Division II Chico State. Emilee will receive excellent coaching at College of the Redwoods while also staying close to family and friends,” Nulph said. “It’s every coaches ultimate goal, to send their kids on to do bigger and better things. So while Emilee has completed her tenure as a Hoopa Valley High athlete, she is now officially a collegiate athlete, and continues a growing trend of Hoopa throwers moving on to throw at a higher level.”

Kisdyante Joseph competed in shotput on Friday. It was her second trip to the Meet of Champions, and also the most successful. Kisdyante began the day ranked fourth out of a field of 24 girls, the NCS only takes the top three places to the State Finals, so all the athletes felt the pressure early on.

The first few throwers got “safe” marks into the sector, thinking that they were safely into the top eight rankings (top eight throwers receive three more competition throws). However, Kisdyante opened up strong straight out of the gate, throwing a 38’9”, and immediately put pressure on the girls ranked above her who had played it safe.

“It was really something to see. Many of these girls had records higher than Kisdyante’s mark, but as soon as they felt the pressure of Kiss’ big throw, they showed their inexperience and began to fall apart. I was in the coaching booth and listened to the other coaches desperately try to get their athletes to calm down, to do this, to do that, but none of it was working,” Nulph said.

Kisdyante was ranked in second heading into the final three attempts, when another girl hit a huge personal record to pull ahead and take the second position.

“Out of that entire field, only two could rise to the occasion,” said Nulph.

Kisdyante placed third, and won the bronze medal, which automatically qualifies her to compete at the California State Finals at Buchanan High School in Clovis on June 2-3. This marks only the second time a Hoopa Valley athlete has qualified for the State Finals.

“The last one to do it was myself in 2008, my senior year,” said Nulph.

“I also placed third at the Meet of Champions to qualify for the State Meet. My mark was a foot less and I was a year older than Kiss. I have no doubt that given another year of training she will be a serious threat to become the best female shotputter this county has ever produced.”

“What I am most excited for however, is the fact that Kiss is a junior and is going to be showcased at this high level of a meet. College coaches from all over the country come to this meet to recruit. I have no doubt that if Kiss wasn’t on their radar before this coming weekend, she will be now.”

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