Class 1A, 2A, 3A Meet Begins Friday GULF SHORES – The AHSAA’s 95 th State Outdoor Track and Field Championships get underway Thursday at Gulf Shores Sports Complex for Classes 4A, 5A, 6A and 7A. The Class 1A, 2A and 3A State Championships start Friday at Cullman High School’s Oliver Woodard Stadium. The NFHS Network will live-team the action at both venues over its subscriber-based platform with the broadcast team of Jerry Young , Kim Canova and Joel Knain handled the announcing at Gulf Shores and the Cullman High School NFHS Network School Broadcast Program, headed by John Drake, will produce the action. To subscribe or for other questions, go to www.nfhsnetwork.com . Hoover High School, coached by Devon Hind, and Homewood, coached by Thomas Esslinger, are defending champions in Class 7A and Class 7A girls’ and boys’ competition, respectively. Other defending champions include, for the boys, Beauregard (5A); Winfield (4A); American Christian (3A); Falkville (2A); and Westminster-Oak Mountain (1A). Winfield is now competing in 3A, however, American Christian has moved up to 4A, Westminster of Oak Mountain has moved to 2A, and Falkville has dropped to 1A. The 2018 girls’ state champions, in addition to the Bucs and Patriots, were St. Paul’s Episcopal (5A); UMS-Wright (4A); American Christian (3A); Altamont (2A); and Whitesburg Christian (1A). St. Paul’s is competing in 6A this season, UMS-Wright in 5A, American Christian’s girls are now in 4A and Whitesburg has moved up to 2A. Montgomery Catholic distance runner Amaris Tyynismaa is closing out her stellar career with the 2019 Class 4A state meet at Gulf Shores. She currently owns the Class 4A state records for the 1,600-meter run (4:57.42 in 2018) and 3,200-meter run (10:53.38) in 2015. Trey Allen of Oak Mountain, who won the national indoor title in February, is back trying to claim the Class 7A state high jump record all his own this time. He leaped 6-10 in 2018 to tie for the outdoor mark with Baker’s Dontavious Hill (6-10). Hill graduated in 2018. Allen cleared 7 feet during the indoor season and has cleared 6-11 in outdoor this season. Another event shaping up to be fierce is the Class 7A girls’ shot put competition. McGill-Toolen Catholic senior Hannah Daffin is in the field after setting the 7A state meet record with a throw 40-06.75 last season. Hewitt-Trussville’s Lea Townsend, a sophomore, and coming in with a throw of 41-04.50 this season – good enough to break the state meet mark. Rosalind Staie of Hoover has also qualified with a throw of 40-05, which also surpasses the 2018 record heave by Daffin. That competition is set for Saturday. The AHSAA State Track Championships, the second-oldest championship sport behind basketball sponsored by the AHSAA, were first held in 1925 with Snead Seminary and Bessemer finishing as the boys’ co-champions. Girls’ competition didn’t get underway until 1972 – Clements High School taking home the state title. This year’s state meet will be the 47 th for girls. The oldest current overall AHSAA State Meet Record still standing is the boys’ shot put (63-0.25), set by Frank Warren of Birmingham-Phillips in 1977. Warren , now deceased, went on to have a stellar college and professional football career as a defensive lineman at Auburn and the New Orleans Saints, respectively. All-America miler Steve Bolt of Grissom set the mile and 880-yard state records in 1973, 1:52.5 and 4:01.1, respectively, but those records will not be broken since the event is now the 800 and 1,600-meter runs. The oldest girls’ record still standing is the discus throw (139 feet, 6 inches) set by Stacy Shaw of Murphy in 35 years ago in 1983.