|Wildcats tracksters finish second at Tiger Relays|
|Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor|
March 26, 2005 - MOUNT VERNON - The Sulphur Springs tracksters had great success in the sprints and distance races on Thursday as they placed second at the Tiger Relays with a short-handed squad.
Senior Keelan Green won three gold medals in the sprints, while the distance runners, led by sophomore Graham Northcutt accumulated 31 points in their three races. The Wildcats also received their best throws of the season in the shot put and discus.
"We had great improvements in our throws," said SSHS head coach Robert Wallace. "The sprinters and the distance guys came through again with most of our points."
The spotlight of the meet, though, was on Green, who was fourth in the 100 at the state meet in 2004, and his 100-meter match-up with Mount Vernon's Tim Monroe, a state qualifier in the 400 last year, and Gilmer's Manuel Johnson, who has signed to play football for Oklahoma.
Green came out of the blocks well, then took off from his competitors, winning the race in a smoking 10.36 seconds (hand-held). It was his fastest finals time of the season, though he ran a 10.26 in a preliminary race earlier this year.
SSHS senior John Hall won the second heat in a time of 11.05, which placed him fourth overall, and senior Robert Finnie was sixth in 11.16.
In the 200, Green won that in a time of 21.67, his fastest of the season, while Jermaine Wright was fifth in 23.39.
Wright, Green, Hall and Finnie teamed up in the 400 relay to win it going away in a time of 42.58. That included Green's split of 9.88 seconds as he ran away from Mount Vernon, which came in second.
The group ran without Keenan Clayton, who was nursing an injured quadriceps. Senior Rolaundo Wright, who has triple-jumped more than 44 feet this year, also did not participate in field events due to an injury.
With those two out, Mount Vernon edged past Sulphur Springs in the final event to win the meet, 124.5 points to 119. Mount Vernon's 4x400 relay, anchored by Monroe, won the event to move past SSHS, which came in fourth in 3:37.80, in the team standings.
Running for Sulphur Springs on the relay was Kasie Carrell, Tallan Askew, Rolaundo Wright and Logan Turner.
The Wildcats' contingent of distance runners performed particularly well. Northcutt placed second to Mount Vernon senior Chris Pearson in both the 3,200-meter run and the 1,600. Northcutt clocked a 10:15.36 in a gusting wind during the 3,200, while freshman Tate Ramirez came in fifth in 11:00.
In the 1,600, Northcutt clocked a 4:37.30 to place second, while Ramirez took sixth in 4:52.30.
In the 800, Victor Rodriguez used a strong second lap to nip a Lindale runner at the tape and place second in 2:08.04, while Karrell was a step back in 2:09.32.
The Wildcats also received a second-place finish from sophomore Daymon Nash in the 110-meter hurdles in a time of 15.40 seconds.
Collecting silver medals in the 4x200 relay was Hall, Finnie, Jermaine Wright and Jeff Pitts. They ran a 1:32.13, which is the best clocking of the year without Green running a leg on the relay.
Junior Jose Vargas got the Wildcats' first discus points of the year as he threw a season-best 137-feet, 2-inches to place second. Tim Phillips, who also runs hurdles, placed sixth in the shot put with a 45-2 effort, the best of any Wildcat this season.
Jon Young earned two hurdling medals, while Christian Person and Rodney Evans took first and second in the shot put to pace the Wildcats' effort in the JV division.
Young won the 300-meter intermediate hurdles in a time of 46.19, and placed second in the 110 highs in 17.16. Person, meanwhile, won the shot put with a throw of 40-9 in his first meet of the year, and Evans was second in 38-2.
Also winning a medal was Chaz Chenault, who ran a 58.08 in the 400 meters to place third.
Fourth-place finishes went to Darius Hall in the 200 (24.34), Tyler Wilson in the pole vault (9-6), and Young in the triple jump (36-8.5). Placing fifth was Hall in the 100 (12.07), while Gabby Rubio was sixth in the 800 in a time of 2:26.99.
With half of the team playing in the baseball game against Paris, the Wildcats scored 67 points, which placed them sixth overall.
3,200-meter run - 2. Graham Northcutt, 10:15.36; 5. Tate Ramirez, 11:00.00.
Shot put - 6. Tim Phillips, 45-2.
Discus - 2. Jose Vargas, 137-2.
4x100 relay - 1. SS (John Hall, Robert Finnie, Jermaine Wright, Keelan Green), 42.58.
800 - 2. Victor Rodriguez, 2:08.04; 4. Kasie Carrell, 2:09.32.
110 hurdles - 2. Daymon Nash, 15.40.
100 - 1. Keelan Green, 10.36; 4. John Hall, 11.05; 6. Robert Finnie, 11.16.
800 relay -2. SS (John Hall, Jeff Pitts, Robert Finnie, Jermaine Wright), 1:32.13.
200 - 1. Keelan Green, 21.67; 5. Jermaine Wright, 23.39.
1,600 - 2. Graham Northcutt, 4:37.30; 6. Tate Ramirez, 4:52.30.
1,600 relay - 4. SS (Kasie Carrell, Tallan Askew, Rolaundo Wright, Logan Turner), 3:37.80.
Team - 1. Mount Vernon, 124.5; 2. Sulphur Springs, 119; 3. Gilmer, 107; 4. Lindale, 76; 5. New Boston, 56; 6. Hooks, 38; 7. Commerce, 35; 8. Winnsboro, 32; 9. Bonham, 28.5; 10. Pittsburg, 2.