Girls track wins 5A state championship

Miranda Isable, Foundations of Journalism

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Hard work, dedication and a love of family helped the girl’s track team win the 5A state championship on May 5. The boys team finished fifth.

“Winning state was the best feeling ever, to bring home a state title along with the Mustang track family,” said sprinter Kyla Johnson, who was part of the first-place 4×100-meter relay team at state. “We laid everything out on the line and went undefeated the whole season. The Mustang track family worked hard for what we wanted, and that was state.”

Johnson said putting her track family first, as well as constant motivation from coach J.J. Downs, contributed to the win.

“We are not a team,” Johnson said. “We are a family. Coach J.J. always says ‘Never let anyone put a limit on what you can do.’ So we took that statement and ran with it!”

Rounding out the coaching staff are Austin Epting and Bruce Hall. Valerie Dailey agreed that all three coaches were a big part of the championship season.

“Going undefeated the whole season and going on to win state is a result of hard work and great coaching,” said Dailey, who finished fourth in the 100-meter hurdles.

In an email, Downs thanked parents and athletes “for the best year in Center Hill High School track and field history.”

“I am one proud coach,” Downs said. “Yes, the awards, medals and trophies are great but I am way more proud of the character that these young people have and all the hard work they put into becoming the very best they can be in the classroom, on the track and in the community.”

State results
1st place – Camaryn McClelland, 100-meter hurdles
1st place – Camaryn McClelland, 300-meter hurdles
1st place – Camaryn McClelland, long jump
1st place – Camaryn McClelland, triple jump
1st place – 4×100-meter relay team of Kaylen Johnson, Jada Crutchfield, Faith Williams and Kyla Johnson
1st place – Jamyah Graham, pole vault
2nd place – Jessica Gibson, pole vault
2nd place – Lee Sanders, pole vault
2nd place – Chris Buford, 800-meter
2nd place – 4×800-meter relay team of Bobbie Johnson, Chynna Lee, Sarah Claire Miller and Abigail Penfield
2nd place – Kaylen Johnson, 100-meter
3rd place – 4×200-meter relay team of Kaylen Johnson, Jada Crutchfield, Niyah Odum and Kennedi Webber
3rd place – Jada Crutchfield, long jump
3rd place – Camryn Terrell, high jump
4th place – Valerie Dailey, 100-meter hurdles
5th place – Cyle Paulino, pole vault
6th place – Jarrett Parks, discus

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Girls track wins 5A state championship