PEWAMO-WESTPHALIA, Mich (WLNS) – Freshman athletes often don’t make a big impact while trying to adjust to the speed of high school sports but someone forgot to tell Pewamo-Westphalia freshman Whitney Werner this past weekend.

At Saturday’s Spring Classic meet at Pewamo-Westphalia’s track, Whitney broke the school record for the mile by five seconds with a time of 5:15:44. The previous record-holder, Amelia Smith, was there to see it happen and couldn’t have been happier for Whitney.

Setting the school record in the mile was one of Whitney’s goals this season but did she know she was going to achieve it when she was on the track?

“I was kinda trying to like tell my time when I would go through like oh is this going to lead to like breaking 5:20 like the school record and once I got through that third lap and it was under four minutes I was like oh I think I can do this today,” said Whitney.

Whitney’s head coach and uncle, Scott Werner, was incredibly proud to see his niece set a new school record yet he believes she’s capable of so much more.

“Looking at the results or looking at the race itself, she did it solo, and what I mean by that is she was so far ahead of second-place she was kind of out there on her own,” said Coach Wermer. “Hopefully she gets opportunities in the future where she gets in a race where she’s actually right next to someone because I think she can even elevate it to the next level.”

The Pewamo-Westphalia track & field program is very familiar with seeing athletes compete and succeed at the college level. Whitney’s dad, Jason Werner who is also her distance coach at PW, ran with his older brother Scott at Northwood University.

Most recently Pewamo-Westphalia alum, Isaiah Schafer, won the shot put Division II National Championship for Davenport University. So is Whitney going to be the next Pirate to run track at the next level?

“Yeah it’s really exciting and yeah I’m hoping to run in college too like you said maybe Michigan State I don’t know…we’ll see,” said Whitney.

“It’s certainly inspiring and I think opening up our eyes…our current athletes’ eyes that they can’t come up with a dream big enough because we have examples literally walking down our streets in Pewamo-Westphalia of national champions and all-Americans and we can do it,” said Coach Werner. “