Kennedy brings home silver
Kaleb Kennedy saved his best for last.
The 17-year-old, Grade 11 student at West Niagara Secondary School was in line for a bronze medal in the senior boys javelin at the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations (OFSAA) track meet last week before his final throw.
Kennedy would have taken a bronze, but his sixth and final toss of 54.69 metres not only shattered his personal best throw by five metres, but also bumped him up to a silver medal.
“I was seeded fourth (going in) so all I was hoping for was podium and hoping for a PB,” the St. Anns resident said. “It felt really good.”
Kennedy said he knew he had a winner immediately.
“Once you get that good throw — I knew as soon as it left my hand I hit it — I raised my arm up in the air and celebrated,” he smiled. “I knew I had it in me. At South Regionals, I didn’t perform as well as I wanted to.”
Kalman Chyz of St. Thomas took home gold with a toss of 56.61 metres.
“I wasn’t too far off and he is in Grade 12 and has a year on me,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy said his confidence is at an all-time high.
“It definitely helps. At the beginning of the season I wasn’t doing too well,” he said. “I had a little bit of a rough patch and I was struggling going into OFSAA and now that I’ve gained that confidence it’s definitely going to set me up for next year.”
Kennedy trains with the Thorold Elite Track Club and was quick to give credit to head coach Steven Fife and javelin coach Kelly Saldutto.
“Steven helps me a lot and Kelly Saldutto was there supporting me,” he said. “I get great coaching.”
Saldutto said Kennedy earned his medal.
“Kaleb trains hard, almost never misses practice and even asks for extra drills to do at home,” she said. “When I say, ‘I want you to do three sets of 10 every day’ I know he’s doing them every day.
“He earned that big throw at OFSAA and the silver medal that went with it – 100 per cent. I was probably almost as excited as he was when they read out the numbers. I was just so happy for him.”
Kennedy plans to participate in the javelin again next year and is looking to be a firefighter following high school.
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