by Lisa Hinton-Valdrighi
Lancaster High School won both the girls and boys championships last Wednesday in the Conference #43 track and field meets in Heathsville.
Zac Benton won two events and Darius Reed one to lead Lancaster’s boys to a seven-point victory over host Northumberland High. The Devils finished with 149 points and the Indians, 142.
Northumberland’s Dequine Johnson was the conference champion in four events, the runner-up in one and third-place finisher in another to be named the most valuable player of the boys meet.
In team scoring, Essex placed third with 98 points, Rappahannock County fourth with 45 and Rappahannock (Richmond County) fifth with 29.
Benton was the conference champion in the mile run, pacing the pack with a time of 5:05.24. Teammates Wyatt McCranie took third (5:50.69) and Marcus Lee fifth (5:51.72).
Benton also won the 800-meter run in 2:14.94 and Lancaster had a clean sweep of the top three spots with Marcus Keeve as the runner-up (2:15.65) and Dominque Veney as the third place finisher (2:15.98).
Reed was the conference champion in the 300 hurdles with a time of 44.84.
The Red Devils also scored nine points in the two-mile run with Zach Kane finishing third in 12:49.90, McCranie fifth in 14:48.79 and Kyle Bean sixth in 15:29.76.
On the short track, Lancaster’s Chris Dameron placed third in the 200 meter dash in 23.95 and fifth in the 100 meter in 11.68.
Benjamin Lee also scored for Lancaster in the 400 meter dash, placing fifth in 57.15. In field events, Lee took fourth in the high jump and qualified for the state Group 1A meet by clearing 5’10”.
Hezekiah Fauntleroy and Jervall Kelly led Lancaster’s throwers with Fauntleroy as the runner-up in the shot put with a 43’2″ throw and Kelly the runner-up in the discus with a 120’1″ throw. Fauntleroy also took fourth in the discus (105’11”) and Kelly fifth in the shot (40’3″).
Lancaster has also qualified two pole vaulters for the Group 1A meet for the first time in school history. Veney cleared 9’6″ and Keeve 8’0″ during a pole vaulting event at Gloucester High School last week. Benton cleared 6’0″ and will compete in the event with a chance to state qualify at the Region 1A East meet this week.
Northumberland’s Johnson dominated the sprinting events, winning the conference championship in the 100 (11.12), 200 (22.48) and 400 (52.57). His times were fast enough to state qualify him in all three events.
He also excelled in field events, winning the triple jump with a 41’11” jump, finishing as the runner-up in the long jump (20’09.5″) and clearing 5’10” for third in the high jump. He also met state qualifying requirements in all three of those events.
In the girls meet, Lancaster’s Diamond Taylor and Leanne Nguyen were conference champions in the shot put and two-mile run, respectively, to lead the Lady Devils to the team title with 142 points. Northumberland was the runner-up with 101.50, Rappahannock County third with 93, Essex fourth with 67.5 and Rappahannock (Richmond County) fifth with 37.
Nguyen led the distance runners with a time of 14.28.73 in the 3200 meter and she finished fourth in the 800 in 2:58.15. Teammate Mears Pollard was fourth in the two mile (17:16.70) and third in the mile (7:35.65). Lancaster’s Tara Gill placed fourth in the mile (7:37.12). Gill also placed sixth in the 800 meter in 3:53.24 and Lancaster’s Alyssa Meadows was fifth in 3:23.11.
Taylor brought home the conference medal in the shot put with a state-qualifying 36’02” throw. She was also the runner-up in the discus with a 87’06” throw.
Jasmyn Tomlin led Lancaster’s jumpers, finishing as the runner-up in the long jump (15’10” and the triple jump (33’8″). Her triple jump met state qualifying standards.
Teammate Tanashia Henderson was a half inch short of Tomlin’s long jump, going 15’5″ for third place. Lancaster’s Nealaysia Redmond was fourth in the triple jump with a 32.2″ jump.
Henderson also cleared 4’6″ as the runner-up in the high jump and Lancaster’s U’niqua Baker also cleared 4’6″ for third place.
Redmond also scored for Lancaster in the long jump, placing sixth with a 14’7″ jump.
Tomlin, Henderson and Redmond also scored for Lancaster on the short track with Tomlin finishing third in the 100 meter hurdles in 18.32 and Henderson placing fifth (13.85) and Redmond sixth (13.9) in the 100 meter dash. Henderson was fourth in the 200 meter dash with a time of 29.86.
In the girls 400 meter dash, Baker was third (1:06.76) and Thomarrow Hardy was sixth (1:13.97).
Tomlin took fourth in the 300 hurdles (1:00.78) and Sydney Price was fifth (1:14.24).
Blake dominated the jumpers as the long jump and triple jump champions. She went 15’11” in the long jump and 33’8″ in the triple to state qualify in both. She also won the 300 hurdles with a state-qualifying time of 50.75 and was the runner-up in the 200 meter dash in 27.87.
Lancaster’s and Northumberland’s boys and girls teams will compete today, May 25, in the Region 1A East meet at Sussex Central.