Orr just misses OFSAA gold
Cassie Orr exceeded expectations by winning a silver medal in the novice girls javelin at the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations track and field championships in early June.
“I did not expect to do that,” the Grade 9 student at Notre Dame said. “I just got back into it during the school season and I was still getting used to competing again after the last few years of COVID and not being able to compete.”
Her expectations didn’t rise even after winning golds in javelin at the Niagara Catholic Athletic Association, Southern Ontario Secondary Schools Association and South Regional track and field meets.
“I started practising, won all my meets for javelin which really surprised me and when I went to OFSAA I thought I was going to get absolutely crushed,” the 14-year-old Welland resident said.
The Thorold Elite Track Club member, who started competing in track and field in Grade 5, certainly didn’t get crushed as her throw of 34.18 metres garnered her the silver medal.
“It still wasn’t a PB (personal best) but my first throw was my best throw. I was in first place until my last throw when the girl in second place threw about 20 centimetres further,” she said. “There was a lot of pressure on my last throw and I messed up my steps.”
She still managed to throw 34.16 metres on her final attempt.
“The disappointment went away because I know second place at OFSAA is amazing,” Orr said. “I know I could have done better but there is always next year.”
The silver medal will be fuel for Orr in 2023.
“It is going to push me. I have been working so hard with practices every week and working out just to finally get a chance to put it to use.”
Her silver medal was the result of a number of factors.
“It was how hard I worked, the number of coaches that I talked to and all the feedback I got back. I tried to use it all.”
Orr never lacks in motivation.
“I am doing it for myself and all the coaches that coach me; Steven Fife and Kelly Saldutto. They have really helped me out.”
Orr is still figuring out what she wants to do with track and field.
“I am in Grade 9 so I have no idea. I am just trying to do my best.”
The next step in her evolution as a thrower will come through continuous practise.
“I have to do what my coaches tell me.”
Orr is a recent arrival to the discipline of javelin.
“I never did javelin in elementary school but I did softball throw and I really like it. Fife introduced me to javelin because he thought it would work out and it did. Now I really like javelin too.”
It goes well with volleyball which is her other sporting passion.
“It is the same arm movement and everything and they compliment each other. And I can do it in the summer and the winter.”
She plays travel ball in the winter with the Niagara Rapids and it requires time management skills to continue to train in javelin.
“I just schedule things around both sports, school and homework.”