MIDDLETOWN — Mushirah Sheppard’s six-year varsity track and field career came to a close in the state championships on Friday, finishing fifth in Division II and 11th overall in the pole vault.

Sheppard is just the second Salamanca athlete to make the New York state track championships four times. She cleared a height of 10-feet-0, still below her personal best, to tie for fifth in Div. II.

“I am not upset with myself, because I know I didn’t give up or make excuses, but I am disappointed,” Sheppard said after the meet, according to coach Laurie Lafferty-John.

She finished in the top half of all 27 girls from the NYSPHSAA to qualify in the pole vault at 11th.

“We were proud of how she approached the meet,” Lafferty-John said. “She did a great job preparing both physically and mentally. At this level of competition there is always such a fine line of where you need to be in your mindset for a great day. With a field of 27 athletes, I know Mushirah had set her goals higher but it just didn’t happen.

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