Parker bolts to state title with 4×400 relay

Redmond resident, Eastside Catholic graduate makes her mark on the track.

Left to right, Eastside Catholic’s 3A state champion 4x400 relay of Alexandra Schoenstadt (alternate), Makena Wick, Paige Parker (Redmond), Katie Baxter and Kate Jendrezak. Courtesy photo

Left to right, Eastside Catholic’s 3A state champion 4x400 relay of Alexandra Schoenstadt (alternate), Makena Wick, Paige Parker (Redmond), Katie Baxter and Kate Jendrezak. Courtesy photo

It was Paige Parker’s duty to blast out of the block and get the 4×400 relay rolling.

Whatever nerves were present before the start of the 3A state championship race were obliterated at the boom of the gun, which propelled the Redmond resident and Eastside Catholic runner into motion.

Using coach Skip King’s energetic pep talk before the race as a booster, “We held the lead the entire time, which was really exciting,” said Parker, whose squad notched the state title with a school-record time of 3:55.03. Holy Names Academy was second in line with a mark of 3:58.50 at the meet, which took place in late May at Mount Tahoma High in Tacoma.

They saved their best for last, laughed Parker, a recent graduate who will attend Washington State University this fall to study psychology. She’s been trying to fit in runs to stay in shape this summer and may walk on to the school’s track and field squad.

Parker said the goal for starting the relay is to bolt out of the blocks fast, hold that initial speed for as long as possible, and then “burn it all out” in the final stretch before the hand off. She was proud of her start and smooth exchange with freshman Makena Wick.

“She’s incredible, so once she got it, she just took off,” said Parker, noting that Eastside Catholic took fifth in the prelims. Parker and Wick were joined on the finals team by juniors Katie Baxter and Kate Jendrezak.

“I think we just had a group of fast girls who were really dedicated to running their best at each event, which made it really helpful. I think that was just the key, it was just everyone’s mindset,” Parker added.

Parker teamed up with Wick, Baxter and Elizabeth Brummer to finish 10th at state in the 4×200 relay in a school-record time of 1:46.29.

It was Parker’s first time at state and she enjoyed spending time with her teammates and felt it was rewarding to witness all their hard work pay off.

“It was a little bit more stressful. It was a much bigger event than running at the other events, but it was fun, though, it was more exciting than anything,” said Parker, who also ran the 300 hurdles and 400 during the season. She ran track for four years and laced up her shoes for the cross-country team for three years.

The Reporter asked Parker a series of questions for a behind-the-scenes glimpse into her life:

What’s your biggest pet peeve?

The pen-clickers. Has to be it (laughs).

What’s your favorite restaurant in Redmond?

The Village Square Cafe. (She works at the Woodinville Cafe, which is part of the chain.)

If you could go to dinner with one person, who would that be?

My sister. I have a twin sister (Mary Anna), she’s my best friend, so I’d go to dinner with her.

What special skill would you like to learn?

I always think it would be cool to know how to play an instrument. Right now, I can play the triangle, and that’s about it (laughs). I think it would be cool to be able to play the piano.

What would you tell an incoming freshman how to succeed in high school?

I would honestly say the first two years are most important. Work really hard those first two years, ‘cause then those last two years, you’ll be able to just kind of float through it and be able to spend that time with your friends before you all go off (to college).

What’s your favorite movie of all time?

Can I pick a TV show? “The Office.”

What’s your favorite kind of music?

It’s honestly all kind of mixed. It’s all over the place.

What’s the best thing to do when you’ve got a group of friends together?

We go geocaching. It’s really fun.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@redmond-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.redmond-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

Redmond’s Paige Parker recently graduated from Eastside Catholic, where her 4x400 relay won a 3A state title. Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Brummer

Redmond’s Paige Parker recently graduated from Eastside Catholic, where her 4×400 relay won a 3A state title. Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Brummer

More in Sports

Photo courtesy of Panthers Youth Rugby
Panthers Youth Rugby rolls into action

Panthers Youth Rugby is encouraging boys and girls in middle school and… Continue reading

t
Redmond coach, grapplers join Ascend Wrestling Academy

Redmond High wrestling coach Lantz Schwabenbauer and several local grapplers are part… Continue reading

A Decatur High School student in Federal Way participates in a conditioning workout in Feb. 2021 as the state eased back in to in-person activities. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
State announces mask requirements for student sports, performing arts

Athletes are not required to wear masks when participating in sports of any contact level while outside.

Screenshot of video obtained by Redmond police shows Richard Sherman trying to break into the Redmond home of his in-laws.
Former Seattle Seahawks player Richard Sherman charged with five misdemeanors in King County

Charges were filed following an incident at home of Sherman’s in-laws in Redmond.

Screenshot
Redmond Police arrest former Seattle Seahawk Richard Sherman

Redmond Police allege former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman crashed into a… Continue reading

Snoqualmie Casino unveiled the first immersive Seahawks-branded table game experience Sept. 18, 2020, in a ribbon cutting dedication with Snoqualmie Tribe Council members and Snoqualmie Casino executives. Courtesy photo
Gambling Commission OKs pacts with tribes for sports betting

Agreements with 15 tribes await approval by the governor and the feds.

Kentwood High football. FILE PHOTO
WIAA Executive Board revises Season 1 sports in response to state guidelines

Practices scheduled to begin Feb. 1 for football, volleyball, soccer and 5 other sports

The Mercer Island boys basketball celebrates their 61-36 victory over Interlake in the 3A KingCo championship game on Feb. 11, 2020, at Sammamish High School. File photo
WIAA pushes back return to play for prep sports

Season 2 now begins Feb. 1 and seasons have been shortened to seven weeks each.

In this file photo from March 2020, the Federal Way High School boys basketball team reacts in the final minutes of the state quarterfinals game against Mt. Si High School. File photo
New guidelines released for return of prep sports in WA

The new plan places counties and sports in three-tier systems. No signs of a quicker return to play.

Redmond football squad is ready to ‘Pound the Rock’
Redmond football squad is ready to ‘Pound the Rock’

Mustangs open season against Squalicum.

Doctor IDs safety measures for youth team sports practices
Doctor IDs safety measures for youth team sports practices

Before practice begins, parents must understand COVID-19 protective protocols

Pictured: A Mercer Island High School swimmer competes in fall 2019. Washington Interscholastic Activities Association recently announced the girls swim and dive season will be moved to “Season 3,” which begins March 1. File photo
WIAA gives schools option to delay start of prep sports until December

An updated plan moves girls swimming to Season 3 and makes fall cross country an alternate season.