KALISPELL — With the Class AA state meet around the corner for track and field, Kalispell Flathead junior Kennedy Moore is tied for the No. 1 spot in Class AA and third-best mark in Montana for the high jump. And coming off of a state championship appearance in basketball, Moore has the podium on her mind.
"I think just like coming off that high and then coming into track was super exciting because it’s something different and it's outside," Moore said. "And I think that even though it’s not my main sport I think high jump is so much fun and I really want to win state this year, so I think that's what has gotten my success."
Flathead high jump coach A.J. Burnham, who also coaches with the Flathead wrestling and football teams, knows that athletes with Moore’s competitive edge at her age are often few and far between.
"She loves it in competition when she gets pushed a little bit and she kind of flips it," said Burnham. "She's one of those kids that can change gears or flip the switch on to kind of meet expectations and match competition, she's really fun to watch."
Moore's itch for competition is never ending. After the basketball season finished Moore essentially stepped right off the court and onto the track.
"Track started on the Monday after state (basketball), but coach (Kaylee) Fox was nice enough to let us basketball players have the first week off and just to rest because it was a long basketball season," said Moore.
From scoring 17 points in the state championship game to her season-best leap of 5-foot-4 in the high jump, Moore’s athleticism and dual-sport success separate her from the crowd.
"You know, the average high school athlete I think sometimes can get a little scared or anxious with competition and just she eats it up," said Burnham. "I mean, it is pretty fun to be able to coach her hard and know that she'll respond. She's just super coachable, she loves doing it."
As she looks ahead toward state and her senior year, Moore couldn’t be more thrilled for all that lies ahead.
"I'm super excited for state and divisionals this year, and then my senior year next year should be super fun," said Moore with a smile. "The competition is going to be great, there's some great high jumpers."
The state meet for Class AA will take place May 26-27 in Butte.