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Poteau’s Brooklyn Garner – Tote-a-poke “premier performers”

Making it to state on her first try. That’s the story line for Poteau freshman Brooklyn Garner. And she did it without having much of a chance to compete before this year.

“When I first got Brooklyn in seventh-grade she didn’t have any track experience at all,” said her coach Billy Bond. “So we spent that year working on mechanics but there was a teacher walkout that year that slowed progress down. Her eighth-grade year was wiped out by the pandemic so I wasn’t sure what to expect when she got to high school this year.”

Brooklyn ran in an assortment of races during the season trying to see what the best fit for her would be and they finally settled on the 200-meter dash and a leg on the 4X400 relay team. Bond also kept an eye on her times in practice in the 100-meter run and as they got better, he decided to have her run that event in the last meet of the year.

“Brooklyn showed how coachable and adaptable she is by taking on the challenge of running the 100 in addition to her other events and she qualified for state in that event as well at regionals. She went in as No. 13 seed at state and finished sixth. She did even better in the 200 as she finished fourth. Our relay team qualified but didn’t place at state,” said Bond.

When she got to high school, Brooklyn played basketball but wasn’t sure she wanted to do track.

“Coach Bond got me to come out but I didn’t really like to run and I wasn’t feeling it at first. But eventually practices became more fun and then we started winning at some of the meets. Doing well in the sprints at regionals was amazing because I never thought I would get this far in track,” said Garner who also takes part in FCCLA at school.

Then it was on to the state meet-pretty heady surroundings for a young freshman.

“When I got to the state meet it was nerve-racking. But when I got to stand on the podium at the end it was just a great feeling of accomplishment for a freshman without much experience,” stated Brooklyn,

She plans to take part in the school’s summer pride program this year and go to basketball camp while doing some running when she can as she looks forward to year number two as a Pirate.

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