Medal Stands: SSHS track teams get strong individual performances at Grace Prep meet
By BOBBY "BUTCH" BURNEY | News-Telegram Sports Editor
March 24, 2008 - ARLINGTON - The Sulphur Springs varsity boys finished seventh and the JV boys fourth on Saturday at the 22-team Grace Prep Invitational Track and Field Meet on the campus of UT-Arlington.
The Wildcats got medal-winning performances from sophomore Bryant "Day Day" Jackson in the triple jump, senior Tate Ramirez in the metric mile, sophomore Shane McQueen in the 300-meter hurdles, senior Kaylon Page in the high jump and senior Rodney Evans in the shot put.
The JV boys were paced by Ryan Young, Alvin Frazier and the distance runners.
The varsity girls had two competitors score points - freshman Bradyn Burney in the 100-meter dash and junior Mackenzie Cross in the high jump. In the JV division, freshman Frankeisha Hawkins won the high jump and placed in two other events.
Jackson was the Wildcats' lone gold medal winner, as he took first place in the triple jump with a season-best 43 feet, 7 inches.
McQueen and Page both won silver medals. McQueen ran his best time of the year, clocking a 39.9 in the 300 hurdles under fully automated timing, finishing about 8/10ths of a second out of first. McQueen also made the finals in the 110-meter hurdles, placing eighth in 16.24 seconds.
Page took second place in the high jump with a leap of 6-2. He actually tied for second, but won the silver medal on fewer misses.
Ramirez, running in just his second meet this season, finished third in the 1,600 meters in a strong field. He clocked a career-best 4:29.69, and was followed by juniors Dylan Rutherford and Ross Hicks in eighth and ninth, respectively, as they both ran a 4:51. Hicks also had a career-best in the two-mile with a time of 10:35.
Evans, who has qualified for regional each of the last two years in the shot put, took third with a throw of 50 feet, 5 inches, the first time this year he has broken the 50-foot barrier.
Cross and Burney scored points for the Lady Cats, who went with a reduced team due to spring break.
Burney ran a 12.8 in the 100-meter prelims - her fastest time of the year - then came back in the finals to take sixth. Cross also reached the awards platform with a sixth-place finish in the high jump at 4-10.
Like the boys, several other girls went and ran their best times of the season, but were unable to place because of the high level of competition, said coach Matt Young.
"We had some team members missing due to spring break, but had a strong showing with times and individual performances," Young said.
Among those he mentioned were the 4x400 relay team of Ashanti Ivery, Stephanie Conley, Alyssa Burney and Trashonda Green, which ran their best time of the year at 4:31.
Young placed second in the 100 meters, Frazier took third in the 300 hurdles and they both placed in two other events as well. In addition, distance runner Garrett Gray was third in the 3,200 and came back to finish fifth in the 1,600.
Gray ran a time of 11:16.40 in the metric two-mile, then clocked a 5:11.09 in the 1,600, while teammate Jarod Morgan ran a 5:12 to place sixth. Morgan also finished fifth in the pole vault with a 10-0 leap.
Young, meanwhile, ran an 11.50 in the 100 to place third and teamed up with Frazier, Kaylon Alexander and Rashad Hall to place sixth in the 4x100 relay in a time of 46.11. Young also finished sixth in the long jump with a leap of 18-6, while Frazier was fifth at 18-11.
Frazier placed third in the 300 hurdles in a time of 45.01, and was sixth in the triple jump with a leap of 37-5.
The SSHS 4x200 relay team of Alexander, Hall, Keiston Clayton and Tylan Harris placed fifth in a time of 1:35.97, and Harris was sixth in the 400 in 56.50. Harris also ran on the 4x400 team that took fourth in 3:45.70. He teamed with Frazier, Chris Sorley and Sawyer Sinclair.
Tyler Halerumal placed sixth in the discus with a throw of 104-5, and Demontra Morris jumped 5-4 to place sixth.
Hawkins scored all the points for the JV girls as won the high jump with a best of 4-6. She also placed sixth in both the triple jump (29-9) and the 400 (69.9).
Baleigh Butler had her best time of the year in the 300 hurdles, and Christonia Beard ran her best time of the year in the 100 as well.
The SSHS track teams will be competing on Thursday at Henderson in their final meet before district.