|SSHS track records in danger|
|Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor|
April 10, 2004 -- Greg Adair, Keith Gray, Mark Horton, Terry Wright.
The Sulphur Springs Wildcats of today don't know the men, but they know the names. They see them every day.
The former Wildcats hold the oldest records still left on the SSHS track and field board, some of them dating back more than three decades. They are the records that the Wildcats of today are shooting for.
Terry Wright's school record of 48.80 seconds in the 400-meter dash is the oldest mark on the board, set in 1971 (converted from the 440-yard dash). Mark Horton ran a school record 1:56.10 in the 800 in 1972 (converted from the 880), Keith Gray owns two marks set in 1976, the shot put record of 62-0 and the discus mark of 175-5, and Greg Adair set the 1,600 record of 4:20.90 in 1980.
Ironically, the oldest records are the ones in least danger of being broken this year as the Wildcats gear up for the District 11-4A track meet on Wednesday and Thursday in Greenville.
Today's Wildcats have their sights set on the sprint and hurdle records that have been set more recently.
"There's some records up there from every decade since the '70s," said SSHS head track coach Robert Wallace. "We got three records last year, and it'd be nice to set three more this year.
"That board helps helps motivate them. They like to look at the board and say, 'Hey, I can get that.' "
The 4x100 relay record of 42.5, set in 1990, has been challenged by this year's foursome which has been in flux due to injury. Running on the relay has been Keelan Green, John Hall, Keenan Clayton, Jermaine Wright and Kendall Wright, who is the only senior. They have timed a 42.54 and 42.57 this season.
The 4x200 relay, which was run as a UIL event beginning last year, is also in danger after last year's squad ran a 1:30.20. This year's team, which has also been altered due to injury, has included Green, John Hall, Trey Hall, Ivan Beard, Jermaine Wright and Jonathan Lindley. They have been just 3/10 of a second off the school mark.
Individually, Green is less than a 10th of a second off the 200-meter record of 21.80 set in 1992 by Chris Wright. He has clocked a 21.86 and 21.89 this season.
Before hurting his hip, Kendall Wright came within 3/100ths of a second of Chris Gibbons' school record of 14.16 set in 1985. Wright has taken about four weeks off from competition to get healthy for the district meet.
Lindley, who set the triple jump record of 46-4 last year has been bothered by a pulled muscle this year, but competed last week for the first time since the early March.
The other school records set last year were the 4x400-meter relay, which clocked a 3:24.00, and Jeromy Donahue's 37.75 clocking in the 300-meter hurdles. Neither of those will likely be broken this year.
"I think that one of the individual records will go before we're through this year," Coach Wallace said, "and the sprint relay and 800 relay will fall. And we've got all the guys who have been running the sprint relay and 800 relay back for another year, so I feel like if we don't get those records this year, they'll fall next year for sure.
"That's been their motivation, to see if they can get their name on the board."