Saturday was prom night at York High School. For many young ladies prom day is reserved for primping and preparation. There is hair to be fixed, nails to be done and dresses to be altered. Time is of the essence, and plenty is needed to get ready for the big evening.
For the York track girls, the prom tension was intensified. On this day they would be racing on the other side of the state, at Harrisonburg High School, which is located approximately 195 miles from the Bailey Field parking lot at York. Considering that the team’s attempt to leave early by skipping the girls 1600-meter relay still didn’t get them out of the high school until just before the last event was completed at 2:55 PM, it is reasonable to believe that the team bus didn’t make it back to school until about 6:30. (This is a valid assumption as a certain track correspondent passed the York team bus on Rte. 64 near Charlottesville.)
It’s not certain if the girls made it to the prom on time, but they surely had plenty to brag about when they arrived. At yesterday’s state championships, the Lady Falcons placed 4th overall to claim the highest finish of any Bay Rivers District team. The Western Albemarle boys and Blacksburg girls took home the team titles.
As temperatures approached 85 on the track, York’s Sherelle White also heated up. First, she blazed through her 100 preliminary in 11.99, a time that coach Sam Jackson noted is her best. The finals were anti-climactic as White pulled away in the first 30 meters and breezed to a five-meter win in 12.20. The win was White’s second state title at that event.
The senior also won the 200 uncontested, running another best time of 24.79 in the prelims before coasting to a 25.04 in the finals for her first state 200 championship.
However, the true test of Falcon grit may have come in the 400-meter relay. Last year, the team had won the event in state meet record time before being disqualified for a questionable zone violation on the second exchange.
Coming into the race seeded first, redemption was on the minds of White, twin sister Shernelle White, Shannon Lewis and Tricey Stancil. But victory would not come easy. After Lewis and the two White sisters had run their legs, the Lady Falcons were in a tie with Spotswood. A good exchange to Stancil provided the impetus and the senior pulled away for a half-second margin.
In all, the three York victories were the only ones provided by the Bay Rivers District yesterday, but there were other quality performances.
Lafayette senior hurdler D’Angelo Scales also claimed a best time of 14.51 in the 110 prelims en route to a second place finish of 14.64. Scales also placed second in the triple jump with a hop, skip and jump of 45 feet, three inches.
Tabb’s Kiara Porter claimed second in the girls 400 with a swift 57.87, over a second better that her previous season best of 59.02. Only a sophomore, Porter looks to be a force at the state level for the next two years.
Jamestown senior Colin Mearns placed second to Western Albemarle’s Tyler Stutzman in the 3200 with a respectable time of 9:20.81. Mearns also took fifth in the 1600 (4:21.12), also won by Stutzman.
Lafayette’s Chelsea LeHew also needed a personal best effort, and LeHew’s 10-3 propelled her to a third place finish in the pole vault. Other bronze medalists came from a pair of relays. On Friday night, the Lafayette girls (9:51.68) claimed third in the 3200-meter relay, while on the day’s final event, the Jamestown quartet of Anthony Green, Graham Schlickenmeyer, Mearns, and Greg Farrell won the slower of the two 1600-meter relay heats in a district best time of 3:25.27, then watched only two teams beat their time in the second heat.
Overall, the Jamestown boys had the highest finish among local teams with 26 points and a sixth place finish. Lafayette tied for 11th with 21.5 points and Grafton took 16th with 17.
Tabb’s girls tied for ninth with 23 points while Lafayette placed 18th with 15 points.
Although the VHSL portion of the season has completed, there are still some post-season meets on the horizon, including next weekend’s Milestat.com Invitational at Sports Backers Stadium in Richmond, and the Nike Outdoor Nationals, to be held on the North Carolina A&T campus in Greensboro, NC from June 18-20.
Other All-State Performances
Tabb G-400 Relay – 50.10 (4th)
Cameron Askew (Grafton) B-400 – 50.17 (4th)
Tabb G-1600 Relay – 4:05.96 (4th)
Chelsea Lewis (Tabb) G-Discus – 113-08 (4th)
Grafton B-3200 Relay – 8:04.76 (4th)
Mearns (Jamestown) B-1600 – 4:21.12 (5th)
David Gunnerson (Grafton) B-800 – 1:56.17 (5th)
Aurielle Green (Jamestown) G-Triple Jump – 35-09.5 (5th)
Kelly James (York) G-Discus – 111-05 (5th)
Glori King (Warhill) G-100 Hurdles – 16.05 (6th)
Heidi Peterson (Lafayette) G-1600 – 5:16.80 (6th)
Gunnerson (Grafton) B-1600 – 4:22.88 (6th)
Warhill B-400 Relay – 43.31 (6th)
Green (Jamestown) B-400 – 50.69 (6th)
Scales (Lafayette) B-300 Hurdles – 40.41 (6th)
Farrell (Jamestown) B-200 – 22.47 (6th)
Tyler Erickson (Lafayette) B-Pole Vault – 12-06 (T-6th)
John Holt (Jamestown) B-3200 – 9:47.16 (7th)
Devin Harrison (Tabb) B-400 – 50.77 (8th)
King (Warhill) G-300 Hurdles – 47.02 (8th)