By Steve Bowman
Editor, The Brentwood Spirit
In her final meet of an eventful summer, Sophia Rivera of Brentwood took third place in the women’s shot put at the Pan American Junior Athletics Championships July 31 in Edmonton, Alberta.
Competing for the U.S. team, Rivera won bronze despite being the second youngest qualifier. The field comprised 11 shot putters from the U.S., Canada, Bolivia, Colombia, Trinidad and Tobago, British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands.
Her put of 15.34 meters was only about 10 inches short of a silver medal. The gold medalist was NCAA indoor and outdoor champion Raven Saunders of Southern Illinois Carbondale. Saunders set a Pan Am Junior record with 18.27 meters, about nine feet farther than Rivera.
It was Rivera’s third and last international meet of the summer. Her senior year at Brentwood High School begins Aug. 12.
Rivera qualified for the Edmonton meet by placing second in late June at the U.S. Junior Championships in Eugene, Ore.
To read a feature article on Rivera at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s website, click here.
Sophia’s Super Summer
June 13 — Havana, Cuba. She finishes first, second and third in the shot put, javelin and discus at the Caribbean Scholastic Invitational. She’s on a team of 28 U.S. high school all-stars sponsored by the National Scholastic Athletics Foundation.
June 19-20 — Greensboro, NC. She wins the shot put and javelin and takes sixth in the discus at the New Balance Nationals Outdoor Championships.
June 25-28 — Eugene, Ore. She takes second in the shot put and seventh in the javelin throw at the USATF Junior National Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the University of Oregon. Her shot put is the best in the U.S. by a high school student in 2015.
July 16 — Santiago de Cali, Colombia. She takes second in the shot put and eighth in the javelin, competing in both simultaneously, at the International Association of Athletics Federations World Youth Championships.
July 31 — Edmonton, Canada. She wins third place in the shot put at the Pan American Junior Athletics Championships.