GULF SHORES -- Despite two weather delays, competition was fierce at Gulf Shores as the 93rd AHSAA Outdoor State Track and Field Championships got underway for Classes 4A, 5A, 6A and 7A at the Gulf Shores Sports Complex.
McGill-Toolen Catholic led the Class 7A boys’ team standings after day one with 27 points after four completed events. Hoover and defending champion Auburn were tied with 21 points each for second place. Cullman gathered 24 points to take the first-day lead in Class 6A. Homewood was second with 17 and defending champion Opelika had 16. Scottsboro topped the 5A standings with 23 points after five events. Brooks was second with 20 and Briarwood, third with 19. Winfield led the 4A competition with 27 points after six events. Defending champion UMS-Wright was second with 18 and Greensboro was fourth with 15.
Defending champion UMS-Wright led the Class 4A girls’ field after four events completed with 20 points. Randolph was second with 15 while Hokes Bluff and Alabama Christian were tied for third with 12 points each. Scottsboro and Beauregard led the 5A girls’ competition with 18 points each and defending champion St. Paul’s Episcopal was third with 16. Homewood’s defending state champion girls led Class 6A after five completed events with 34 points. Opelika had 22 and Pelham was third at 15. James Clemens’ girls led Class 7A with 34 points after seven events had been scored. Defending champion Mountain Brook was second with 23 and McGill-Toolen Catholic was third with 19.50.
The Class 1A, 2A and 3A State Championships get underway at Cullman High School Friday. Both sites are scheduled to conclude Saturday afternoon. The NFHS Network is live-streaming the competition at both sites. To access the production, click on the NFHS Network link on at www.ahsaa.com and then follow the instructions to access the AHSAA events.
Among the individual performances at Gulf Shores Thursday, junior high jumper JuVaughn Blake of Huntsville’s Columbia High School won the Class 6A competition clearing 6 feet, 10 inches on his first attempt. He then moved to 7-02, and although he has cleared that height more than once this season, he was unable to clear under the windy conditions on his three attempts and won with his 6-10 leap. Blake entered the competition at 6-4 and had no misses until his final three attempts. Trae Harry of Spanish Fort finished second clearing 6-06. Seth Williams of Paul Bryant also cleared 6-6 but had more misses and finished third. Both high jumpers missed at 6-8.
Sparkman’s 4x100-meter relay team set a new Class 7A girls’ record with a winning time of 46.77 seconds in the prelims Thursday. The previous record of 47.23 was set by Hoover in 2016.
Alonie Sutton of Smiths Station set a new 7A record in the triple jump Thursday with a winning distance of 40 feet, 1 inch. The old mark (39-03.50) was set by James Clemens’ Kayla Williams in 2015.
Among other top performances:
Class 7A Boys
100-Meter Dash: Lee-Montgomery senior Henry Ruggs recorded the fastest boys’ time of all prelims Thursday with a 10.77 time in his Class 7A head. Sparkman’s Charles Lewis was second in the 7A competition at 10.96.
1,600 Meters: Auburn’s Jack Rogers missed the 7A state record by just two seconds with a winning time of 4:19.50.
Pole Vault: Jake Spotswood of McGill-Toolen cleared 16 feet, 6 inches to beat the field by two feet.
Long Jump: Class 7A record holder Noah Igbinoghene cleared 23-11 to win the event but was almost eight inches shy of his state record set in 2016 (24-07.50).
Shot Put: Davidson’s Deondre Moore had a winning throw of 44 feet, 7 ¼ inches to beat Hewitt-Trussville’s Gaines Myrick by three inches.
Class 6A Boys
Javelin: Ashton Dominque of Briarwood Christian had a winning throw of 179 feet, 1 inch to win over Lazarius Decatur of Brooks, who finished second at 173 feet.
100-Meter Dash: Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa’s Okheme Moore clocked a 10.82 to qualify first in the 6A prelims.
1,600 Meters: Ben Garner of Opelika won with a time of 4:18.76, fastest boys’ time of the day in any class.
Discus: Cullman’s Austin Elrod won with a throw of 166-08 to help Cullman take a first-day lead after three completed events.
Class 5A Boys
Long Jump: Scottsboro’s John Dalton won a close battle over runner-up Roderick Johnson of Beauregard and third-place finisher Shon’derious Spraling of Mae Jemison. All three cleared 21 feet with Dalton going 21-08.75 to win.
1,600 Meters: Arab’s Chase Buckelew won with a 4.28.06 time.
Wheelchair Shot Put: Nick Walls of Crossville’s a winning throw of 24-03.
Class 4A Boys
100-Meter Dash: Winfield senior Trey Cunningham, who set a new 4A/5A Indoor record in the 60-meter dash in February, clocked 11.16 seconds to qualify first in the 4A prelims – just 8/1000ths of a second faster than Ty Washington of Sipsey Valley to set up what should be an exciting 100 final race Saturday.
1,600 Meters: Trinity Presbyterian’s Charlie Lott clocked 4:28.74 to nip Tanner King of Northside (4:29.76) at the finish line.
Discus: Madison County’s Stephen White won with a winning throw of 122-05.
Ambulatory 100-Meter Dash: Hokes Bluff’s Logan Langley ran the 100 in 15.45 seconds to win.
Class 7A Girls
1,600 Meters: Auburn’s Samantha Rogers and McGill-Toolen’s Grace Jensen finished 1-2 with Rogers clocking 4:58.15 and Jenson, 4:58.53,in what turned out to be the closest race of the girls’ competition Thursday.
Pole Vault: Sophie Jane Knott of Mountain Brook cleared 11 feet, 3 inches to take first place.
Ambulatory Shot Put: McGill-Toolen’s Jordan McGuire won with a distance of 20 fee6, 6 ¼ inches on her fourth attempt.
Ambulatory 200-Meter Dash: Jordan McGuire clocked 35.06 seconds for McGill-Toolen.
Class 6A Girls
1,600 Meters: Homewood’s Lainey Phelps won with a winning time of 5:02.75 – 15 seconds better than her closest challenger.
Javelin: Haley Dempsey of Oxford won with a winning throw of 100-01.
Class 5A Girls
100-meter Dash: Senior Florida State track signee Jayla Kirkland of Woodlawn had the fast time of any girls’ runner in the prelims clocking 12.03 seconds running in a minus1.8 headwind in the 5A competition.
1,600 Meters: Karsyn Whitehead of Scottsboro beat the field clocking 5:16.17 to win.
Shot Put: Sam Dailey of Beauregard won with a winning toss of 38-09.75. Teammate Alexis Jackson was second with a best throw of 37-09.