The Cuthbertson women’s indoor track and field team only had one individual event winner, but ran away with the team title, outpacing Weddington 67.5-48. The win was Cuthbertson’s second team state title and gave the Cavaliers back-to-back state championships on the women’s side. Weddington’s men’s team captured the 3A men’s title, blasting past Mount Tabor 72-51.5, earning the Warriors their second men’s indoor track team title and first since 2016.
WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP RECAP
Sarah LaTour was Cuthbertson’s lone individual event champion as she claimed the 3200 meter run. LaTour dominated the race, posting a time of 11:03.16, besting second place Jonna Strange from North Iredell who finished in 11:14.92.
LaTour also finished second in the 1600 meter run, coming in just behind T.C. Roberson’s Elise Wright. Wright set a new 3A meet record in the event at 5:00.71, and LaTour also bested the old record with her time of 5:02.43. The two took down the record held by Blake Dodge from West Carteret of 5:08.12 set back in 2104. LaTour was named the 3A meet’s MVP for helping her team to the team championship.
Distance events were the strong suit of Cuthbertson, as a pair of freshman finished fifth and sixth in the 1600 meter run. Leah Helms and Kaitlyn St. Hilaire completed the distance in 5:22.59 and 5:23.41 respectively. Cavaliers freshman Madeline Hill finished fifth in the 3200 meters, posting a time of 11:30.86.
The Cuthbertson 4 x 400 Relay team of Aubrie Farwell, Florah Henry, Mackenzie Townsend and Dahlia Cutler posted a second place finish of 4:06.98, just a touch behind the event winners from Hillside. The Hillside quartet of Ashlan Bowdry, Emmaya Waters, Shaliyah Wilkerson and Jessica Wright combined to set a new 3A meet record in the event, finishing in 4:05.89 and breaking the record of 4:07.43 set a year ago by the team from Nash Central.
Weddington’s Riley Felts set a new state record in the pole vault as she cleared 12’ 07.5” on her way to the state title. Her performance bested the record of 12’ 7” set last year by Tessa Sheets from Northwood.
Two more 3A meet records went down in relay events, with Parkland setting a new mark in the 4 x 200 Relay and Weddington posting a new best time in the 4 x 800 Relay. Parkland’s team of Shamara Tolliver, Del’Nique Penn, Diamond Lyerly and Alexis Patterson posted a time of 1:43.48, crushing the record of 1:46.61 set a year ago by Nash Central. Weddington’s team of Sydney Burke, Sarah Bechtel, Anna Brown and Elizabeth Starkie slashed 3.5 seconds off the 4 x 800 Relay 3A record, posting a time of 9:42.39.
Hillside’s Kayla Beasley set a new 3A record in the shot put, tossing 44’ 11.75”. Her throw shattered the 3A record set by Alexis Dickerson from Western Alamance in 2014 of 41’ 01.25”. Meanwhile, J.H. Rose sprinter Jordan Sales claimed victory in the 300 meters, setting a new 3A record time of :40.61. That time nipped the record set last year by Nash Central’s Micheala Nelms of :40.64.
MEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP RECAP
The Weddington men cruised to victory on the strength of an individual event win and a sweep of the three relay events. The Warriors got an individual victory from Emerson Douds in the 300 meter dash as he crossed in :34.52, setting a new 3A meet record. His performance broke the mark from a year ago of :34.78 held by Southern Nash’s Nadir Thompson.
The Warriors swept the three relay events, most impressively earning victory in the 4 x 200 Relay in a new state meet record time. Doug Dracon led off for Mark Conner, Denison Livingston and Emerson Douds, who powered their way to a time of 1:29.46, besting the state meet record 1:30.18 of Parkland’s squad just a year ago.
Dracon, Livingston and Douds teamed with Kyle Durham in the 4 x 400 to post a time of 3:24.21, shattering the old 3A meet record of 3:30.01 set by Northern Guilford in 2014. Warriors relays also saw their 4 x 800 Relay squad set a new 3A meet record when Jackson O’Hara, Kyle Durham, Jake Toomey and Will Mazur became the first 3A 4 x 800 Relay team to go under eight minutes. The group crossed in 7:59.48, besting the 2016 mark of 8:01.84 set by Asheville.
Cameron Ponder from Mount Tabor was named the meet’s Most Outstanding Performer as he won the 1000 and 1600 meter runs. Ponder set a new 3A record in the 1600 meter, completing the distance in 4:16.06, taking down the old record of 4:17.71 set in 2015 by East Henderson’s Tanis Baldwin. Ponder won the 1000 with a time of 2:33.55.
Southern Durham saw Khaleb McRae dash to a new 3A meet record in the 500 meters, posting a time of 1:04.45. His time trimmed well over a second off of the 1:05.84 of Jaylon Sanders from West Rowan, which had been the 3A record since 2016.
Press release provided by the NCHSAA