BYFIELD — This time last year, nobody was sure if Kerstin Darsney would ever high jump again.
During a meet last year against Hamilton-Wenham, the Triton standout fell awkwardly while high jumping and suffered a serious shoulder injury. The injury forced her to miss the rest of the indoor season, and after undergoing surgery she was limited in the events she could do during the spring while she recovered.
“Her surgery was in February and she was back in the weight room in March,” said Triton track coach Joe Colbert. “So she almost had a full year of rehab and really hard work before she got back out there, and it paid off.”
Returning to the track fully healed as a senior, Darsney blew away all expectations when she jumped 5-7 in her first meet back. The jump proved to be only a sign of things to come, as Darsney went on to complete one of the best seasons in Triton indoor track history, culminating with a state championship and an appearance at Nationals.
Darsney was the Cape Ann League’s Athlete of the Year, winning the league championship in both the high jump and the 55-meter hurdles and placing second in the 300-meter dash.
She then went on to turn in what turned out to be her best performance of the year at the Division 4 State Championships, placing first in the high jump with 5-8 to set a new school record, win the state championship and secure her place among the top jumpers in the country. She also placed third in the state in the 55-meter hurdles with a time of 8.90.
At All-States, Darsney jumped 5-6 to place third, and shortly afterward, she competed in the MSTCA Pentathlon, placing fourth overall with 2,880 total points. Finally, she began training for her biggest test of all, the New Balance Indoor Nationals.