TRACK AND FIELD
A 12-time state qualifier and five-time Drake Relays qualifier has officially signed her letter of intent to compete at the Division I level.
Panorama track and field senior Morgan Johnk, an elite high jumper and sprinter committed to the University of Northern Iowa Tuesday, Jan. 8 among a group of friends, family and coaches.
Johnk, who placed fourth in the 2018 Drake Relays high jump and fourth at the 2018 Class 2A state meet, made her decision out of interest from Drake University, Central College and Central Missouri State.
Johnk has won eight West Central Activities Conference championships, including the past three high jump titles. She’s also qualified for state in the 100-meter hurdles for three straight years, culminating with a career-best silver medal last spring, helping the Panthers to third overall as a team.
“Morgan is a very talented, but humble athlete,” Panorama track and field coach Greg Thompson said. “She wants to succeed individually, but more important to her is the team and the achievements of the team. NCAA Division 1 athletes don’t come along often in a school our size. We are blessed to have had Morgan as a student and as an athlete at Panorama.
I can only hope that my own daughter grows into a young woman like Morgan with outstanding moral character, good work ethic, and a team first mentality.”
The UNI Panthers are coached by Dave Paulsen, who’s been the head man for three years. Paulsen is also the cross country coach, maintaining a role in the fall program since 2008.
Johnk is a pivotal athlete on the undefeated and sixth-ranked Panorama girls’ basketball team while she also played a role on the resurgent Panther volleyball team this past fall.
A full-length Times Vedette feature will be published in the coming weeks with comments from Johnk herself.