Ready, Set, Go
2018 Track and Field Outlook: Area boasts potential state medalists
Track and Field Season Outlook
By Malcolm Shields
Monday, March 5, 2018
The first full week in March is the unofficial start of the track and field season in the area.
Similar to last spring, this season in track and field could see individual athletes contend for not only medals at regionals, but also at the state championship meets in mid-May.
The first meet of the season takes place on Tuesday at Pasquotank as NCRunners.com brings the Eastern Tour to Elizabeth City.
Tuesday’s meet is the second consecutive season that the track and field website brings the event to the region.
Although the meet will be staged at Pasquotank County High School, Northeastern High School will be the host.
Currituck, John A. Holmes, Northeastern, Pasquotank and Perquimans are set to take part in the meet along with Bertie, Cape Hatteras, First Flight and Gates.
Here is more on the 2018 track and field season:
Coach: Victoria Black
Outlook: The Bruins will have depth in the distance events for both the boys and girls teams.
Senior Dominic Brooks will try to build on his second place finishes in the 1,600 and 3,200 meters and seventh place time in the 800 meters at the East Regional last spring.
Brooks had a strong fall during the cross country season as he won the 1A East Regional and was a state qualifier in November.
In the field events, Camden will be without shot put and discus standout Ryan Baldwin, who is now in the college ranks at Virginia Wesleyan.
Hannah Healy, Autumn Healy and Brookelyn Johnson are expected to be contributors for the Camden girls team in the distance races.
The Lady Bruins will have to replace the production of Carolyn Harris, who is now a member of the North Carolina-Wilmington track and field team.
Harris was a key sprinter for the Lady Bruins last season.
Coach: John Wheeler
Outlook: On the girls side, the Lady Knights will be a favorite along with Pasquotank to contend for the Northeastern Coastal Conference girls team championship this season.
Fresh off of a third place finish in the 55 meters during the 1A/2A indoor track and field state championship meet last month, Amberine Brown, a senior sprinter, will try to duplicate her indoor success during the outdoor campaign in the 100 and 200 meters.
Trinity Evans and Jasmine Bailey, who were both state qualifiers last season, will also compete in the 100 and 200 meters.
Senior Sarah Dover, who was a 2A East Regional qualifier last season, is expected to represent Currituck in the 800 meters this season.
In the field events, Destiny Ferebee will be a contender for a league title in the shot put and discus. Ferebee was a state qualifier last season.
Leilani Lopez, who won the NCC title last season, will be a key member in the long and triple jumps.
Isis Saunders, Abby Wooten, Ally Sarnowski and Lanaya Evans are expected to contribute.
Wheeler noted that senior leadership and experience in many areas is the strengths of the team.
Ryan Camden, Tyler Perkins and Joey Amburgey are three athletes that were state qualifiers last spring that return for the 2018 campaign for the Currituck boys team.
Camden will compete in the 800, while Perkins and Amburgey will run in the 400 meters.
In the field events, Jalen Owen is expected to score points in the shot put and discus, while Ricky Owens will compete in the long jump.
Ricky will also run in the 300 hurdles.
Jalen and Ricky were regional qualifiers last spring.
David Foreman, Michael Johnson, Collin Jennings, Josh Beaumont and Brad Saunders will help the team.
Wheeler noted that the boys team should be improved and has great depth and numbers in many areas.
JOHN A. HOLMES
Boys coach: Tamika Nixon
Girls coach: Maurice Downing
Outlook: The Aces begin their first season as a Class 1A program after spending the previous seasons in Class 2A.
Nixon noted that the Edenton boys’ strength will be in the sprints.
Eric Phelps and Xavius Capehart will compete in the 100 meters, the 200 meters and the 4x100 and 4x200 meter relay teams.
The 4x200 relay qualified for the 1A/2A state championship meet last month at Winston-Salem.
Zakeem Brooks will run in the 100, the 4x100 and 4x200 meter relays along with the long jump.
Aaron Pryce, who was a state qualifier during the indoor track and field season, will compete during the outdoor season in the 110 hurdles, the 300 hurdles and the 4x200 meter relay.
Sophomore Blake Meadows will anchor John A. Holmes in the distance races in the 1,600 and 3,200 meters
Ckaviyon Everett will compete in the 200 meters and the long jump.
Similar to the boys teams, the Lady Aces will be powered by their sprinters.
Seniors Alana Stevenson and Invyeous Williams are expected to anchor the Lady Aces in the 4x100 and 4x200 meter relay teams.
Stevenson will sprint in the 100, while Williams will compete in the 200.
Ja’Nyrah White will join Stevenson and Williams on the relay teams, while competing in the 100 meter hurdles.
Shametria White is expected to run the 400 and be part of the 4x400 meter relay, while Mikyjah White will compete in the long and triple jumps.
Downing also noted that senior leadership, hard work and dedication are key to the season.
Coach: Tony Johnson
Outlook: The Northeastern boys team returns five key contributors from last season’s team that won the Northeastern Coastal Conference championship meet.
Malikh Combs, Aaron Harris and William JR Walker, will be the key returning sprinters from last season.
Adrian Spellman, a sophomore, will be a contributor in the shot put and discus, while Carlos Raven, also a sophomore will compete in the 400 meters. Both are returning athletes from last season’s team.
Although Northeastern may not have plenty of depth in the distance races, the Eagles have potential conference, regional and state title contenders in Nolan Hodge and Josiah Felton in the jumps.
Both won medals in the high jump, while Hodge finished in first place in the long jump at the 1A/2A indoor track and field state championship meet last month.
Daquan Dunton, Daniel Lamb are expected to help the Eagles in the long sprints, while, Juan Riddick will compete in the sprints.
The Northeastern girls will be powered by the sprints and throwing events this season.
Dasia Phillips will contribute in the shot put and discus, while Deniqua Valentine, Breanna Proctor and TyQuasha Cousette will comprise the sprints for the Lady Eagles.
Candace Barclift, a sophomore will compete in the hurdles, while Lizzy Betts will join Barclift in the hurdles along with the middle distance races.
Kiara Williams, a freshman who finished fourth in the 500 meters at the indoor state championship meet last month, is expected to score points for the Lady Eagles in the 400 and other long sprint events during the outdoor season.
Boys coach: Chris McGee
Girls coach: Terry Kelly
Outlook: The Lady Panthers have a core of returning athletes from last season.
Pasquotank returns ¾ of the girls 4x100 relay team that won the 2A East Regional last May at Pasquotank.
Amaya Simpson, Jaleia Oatman and Kennedy Griffin were part of the team that won the event for the fourth consecutive season.
Aundrea Morgan, who was the fourth runner on last season’s 4x100 relay team, is now at the college level as a member of the Mount Olive women’s track and field team.
Morgan was the Daily Advance Area Athlete of the Year in girls track and field last spring.
Simpson is also expected to compete in the triple and long jumps and the 200 meters this season.
Oatman will run in the 400 meters, while Griffin will race in the 100 meters and long jump.
Tyauna McCoy will contribute in the 400 as a sophomore.
Other contributors will be Nkyla Lester, Kaylee Swope, Ashiana Jennette, Keyona Moore and Destine Moore.
Sam Bingham is expected to have another strong season in the sprints for the Pasquotank boys team.
The junior is expected to run in the 100, the 200 and the 400 meters.
Adrian Sanchez will be a factor in the 300 hurdles, while Patrick Riddick (shot put and discus) and Kimori Harris (shot put) should score points in the throws.
Gregory Barnes, Camecies Mayfield and Jeremiah Dunton can make an impact.
Coach: Ian Rapanick
Outlook: The Perquimans boys track team will have to replace the production of last season’s lone representative at the state championship meet in Frederic Norman.
Norman, who was a senior last spring, finished in fifth place in the 200 meters at the NCHSAA 1A state championship meet.
The Pirates return sprinters Quindall Freeman (400 and 4x400 meter relay), Travis Reid (100 and 200 meters), Rodney Lyons (4x200, 4x100 relays and 200 meters) and DJ Johnson (400 and 4x400 meter relay).
In the field events, Karaye Twine, a senior, will compete in the high jump, while George Simpson will anchor the discus and shot put for the Pirates.
Rapanick noted that the boys team should be good in the relays, discus and jumps. The coach added that staying healthy is key for the Pirates this spring.
On the girls side, sophomores Kyajia Jackson (4x100 meter relay) and Sondra Rennie (4x200 meter relay) are the top returners for the Lady Pirates.
Amy Roundtree, also a returning athlete from last spring, is expected to contribute. Rapanick also noted that the Lady Pirates should be good in the distance events.