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Tracks will be heating up around the area as our three local high schools send contingents to their respective district meets.
Staunton River has to be considered one of the favorites to repeat as Blue Ridge champions on the boys’ side.
The Golden Eagles bring strength, seemingly, to every event. The team used last week’s tri-meet with fellow Blue Ridgers Northside and Alleghany as a tune-up.
River won both sides of the house. The men piled up 117 points, well above Alleghany’s 40.5 and Northside’s 14.5
The ladies had a closer go of it, winning with 76 points over Northside’s 64. Alleghany scored 22.
The Eagle men were led by a trio of multiple winners. Big man Michael Hajduk took wins in the discus (132’ 2”) and the shot (40’ 2”)
Dalton Parker showed himself to be the cream of the hurdlers. He took top honors in the 110 meter hurdles (16.74 seconds) and the 300 meter hurdles (45.23 seconds).
Stuart Robertson, meanwhile, was king o’ the distances. The junior pulled in with a first place in the 800 meters. Robertson’s time of 2:04.04 was 0.40 seconds better than teammate Cody Meadows.
Other Staunton River guys that took top honors included Kyle Jones in the pole vault (8’ 6”) and Meech Coles in the 100 meter dash (11.54 seconds).
Ben Pendergraft edged teammate Rico Turner to take the win in the 400 meter dash with a time of 53.84 seconds.
Finally, Chris Eggleston won the 200 meter dash. His time of 23.64 seconds topped the field. Note: the next six finishers behind Eggleston all wore black and gold. In order, they were: Jarrett Moon, Trevian White, Cam Holdren, Pendergraft, Marcus Brown and Denzel Reeves.
That, ladies and gentlemen, is we call depth.
On the ladies side, it was the Lily Garrecht show as “Leapin Lily” took top honors in five events.
She won the high jump (4’ 6”) and pole vault (8’) in the field events. Over on the track, the sophomore won the 100 meter hurdles (20.05 seconds), the 100 meter dash (13.64) and the 300 meter hurdles (54.34 seconds).
In contravention to rumor, Garrecht was not seen parking cars and running the concession stand.
The other major contributor to the Lady Eagle win was Beka Miller, who mopped up in the discus. Her heave of 103’ 4” was almost 25 feet better than the next closest competitor (79’ 2”). Miller also nabbed second place in the shot put. Her toss of 34’ 9.5” was 4.5 inches behind Emily Huffman, of Northside.
Another Lady Eagle winner was Katrina Legans, who took the top prize in the 400 meter dash (1:06.74).
In relay action, River’s 4 X 100 (Coles, Moon, Bry Mosley and Eggleston), 4 X 400 (Barrett, Meadows, Pendergraft and Robertson) girls 4 X 800 (Kristina Hartsook, Julia Robertson, Kristy Rucinska and Holly Sheets) and boys 4 X 800 (Aaron Britton, John Dagan, Cody Francisco and Logan Hurt) all earned wins.
So, with all of that firepower, the Rivermen should be a shoo-in to win the Blue Ridge, right?
“If meets were won on paper, I would be real happy,” said Eagle Head Coach Joe Curcio. “However, they are not. Our seeding looks good, but we will have to be on top of our game and have no negatives (false starts, dropped batons, etc.)”
That’s why they run ‘em, right, Coach?