Photo by Derrick Mahone
Mundy's Mill sprinter Maya Collins awaits the batton as she prepares to run the final leg on the Lady Tigers' 1,600-meters relay team, which qualified for state by winning the Region 4-AAAA championship. Collins finished first in the 300 hurdles.
By Derrick Mahone
With only one more region track and field championship to be completed, the Southern Crescent will be well represented at next month's boys and girls state meet.
So far, there have been 58 athletes that have qualified for the state meets, with 31 going as the region champion. The boys state championship will be May 5-7 at Memorial Stadium in Jefferson.
The girls meet will be May 12-14 at Hugh Mills Stadium in Albany. All the regions involving area teams have been completed, except for the girls' side of the Region 3-AAAA meet, which will take place Monday and Tuesday at Starr's Mill High.
Here is a look at how the teams and athletes from the area fared at their respective region meets:
Region 2-AAAAA: Luella is the lone representative from the area in this powerhouse region that includes Stephenson, Westlake and M.L. King. The Lions had two girls - Paige Rankine and Emily Roemer - to qualify. Rankine placed second in both the 1,600- and 3,200-meters while Roemer won the 3,200 event.
On the boys' side, Jordan Thomas won the pole vault and placed second in the 300 hurdles. Teammate Preston Valencia was second in the 3,200 event.
Luella boys team was fourth in the final standings while the girls placed seventh overall.
Region 3-AAAA: As a team, Union Grove placed fifth overall while Dutchtown was ninth in deep region. Ola was 11th overall after the two-day meet.
Wolverines distance runner Dacosta Smith was first in the 3,200 and took second in the 1,600 while teammate Jordan Moore won the 100 hurdles event. Pole vaulter Chase Ames won his event to place for state.
Region 4-AAAA: As expected, the Clayton County schools dominated this region. Lovejoy won the boys' division with 154 points while Mundy's Mill held off Creekside to win the girls' side with 120 points, nine more than the Seminoles.
Mundy's Mill was led by Maya and Kenya Collins, who combined to qualify for three individual events. The sisters also combined with Chelsea Johnson and Klondra Brown to help lead the 1,600 relay team to a first place finish.
In all, five athletes won two events at the meet, which was held at Twelve Oaks Stadium. In addition to Kenya Collins, Lamont Hardy of Lovejoy, Jonesboro's S'Kayia Hampton, Ayrian Evans of Morrow and Derrick Tucker of Morrow all had two individual region championships.
Region 4-AAA: Eagle's Landing placed second in both the boys and girls championships. The Lady Golden Eagles had four participants to qualify for state with Kristian Austin (300 hurdles) and India Milling (3,200) each won region championships.
Milling also qualified in the 1,600 after taking second place. Shantia Wilson (800) and Mia Adams (long jump and triple jump) also qualified for state. The teams 1,600 relay team earn a state qualifying spot with a second place finish.
On the boys' side, Zack Sims swept the 1,600 and 3,200 races while teammate Bailey Roth was runner-up in both.
Drew finished third with Jadarius West winning both the 200 and finished second to Stockbridge's Markquiez Hodo in the 100.
Region 5-A: Eagle's Landing Christian finished third with Christian Reeves (triple jump, second place) and Tanner Rogers (shot, first) qualifying for the state meet.