THREE FORKS -- When the Montana High School Association officially canceled spring sports, Three Forks sophomore Jasmyn Murphy had an idea.
“I was super bummed and track is my favorite sport, so not having a season was rough," said Murphy. "So my dad came home one day and was like, 'Well, why don’t we have some sort of virtual track season?'”
That idea turned into Virtual Track Montana. Murphy is challenging high school athletes to go to their local track starting Thursday, May 7, compete in their track and field events, and then send her their scores and times via email.
All times, jumps and throws must be timed or measured by a third party, who will then sign off to signify a legitimate result on behalf of the competing athlete. Murphy admits measurements and times will come to down to sportsmanship on every athlete's part to be honest with their performances.
Athletes can resubmit as many results as they want before the deadline. And Murphy believes this virtual competition is a way to get back a season that is lost.
“I also felt for senior athletes," Murphy said. "It’s their senior year and I couldn’t imagine missing out on my favorite sport my senior year.”
Every week Murphy will update the top 10 results in each event on the Virtual Track Montana's Facebook page. And she is working with local schools to explore the possibility of organizing her own state track meet featuring the top 10 athletes in each category.
“I’ve been trying to contact athletic directors in Bozeman and the Belgrade area, possibly Helena, some place that’s in more central Montana so that it will be an equal distance,” she said.
The virtual competition is slated to end Wednesday, May 20, and the state meet would be held the following week. But even if social distancing guidelines don’t allow that to happen, Murphy still wants to see her fellow track athletes go out, compete virtually with one another and have fun.
“Just try to beat the person in first," she laughed. "Compete against yourself. Always be trying to make a new PR (personal record) and beat your last time. Always thrive to do better.”
Here is the full rules list to Virtual Track Montana. To begin submitting scores to Virtual Track Montana, you can email results to firstname.lastname@example.org.