Last Friday night, North Stokes took home several top 10 finishes in the Watauga Invite that was hosted at JDL Fast Track. Facing off against 10 teams from across the Triad, the Vikings showed off gains made in recent weeks on the indoor, Mondo-style track.
Viking Tess Rogers got an eighth place finish for clearing the 55-meter hurdles in 10.4 seconds. Shalynn Brown finished just outside the top 10 in 12th place, with a time of 11.4 seconds.
Rogers, two time defending state 1A champion in the pole vault, already qualified for the state meet with a 10-foot vault earlier this year. Last Friday night, she grabbed a first place finish with a vault of 10 feet, six inches. Moriah Boyette also made her way into the top 10 in the event with a vault of over eight feet.
Brown had strong showings in the long jump and the triple jump events. Brown finished in sixth place in the long jump event with a jump of 13 feet, nine inches. She finished in third in the triple jump event with a jump of nearly 30 feet.
Mackenzie Lewellyn and Morgan Lawson made their way into the top 10 in the shot put event. Lewellyn got a second place finish with a throw of over 30 feet. Head Coach Rodney King said that Lewellyn is close to qualifying for the indoor state meet. Morgan got a ninth place finish with a throw of over 24 feet.
The Viking boys faced some tough competition from area 3A and 4A schools in the Watauga Invite and finished further down the list than in previous meets, but still managed to beat their own personal records in several instances.
Shephard Ottaway finished in 21st place in the 55-meter dash with a time of 7.3 seconds. Patrick Kopp (31), Alex York (35) and Colin Anderson (38) finished with times nearing eight seconds.
The boys had to settle for low positions in the 300-meter dash, as well.
York and Kopp finished just outside the top 10 in the 500-meter run with times of one minute and 22 seconds and one minute and 24 seconds.
North Stokes distance runner Sean Condon grabbed a seventh place finish in the 1,000-meter run with a time of two minutes and 53 seconds.
Condon followed up with a seventh place finish in the 3,200-meter run with a time of 10 minutes and 52 seconds. James Hammonds trailed Condon with a time of 11 minutes and 17 seconds.
Ottaway finished in eighth place in the 55-meter hurdles and cleared them in just under 10 seconds.
The Vikings pole vaulting team is showing results this year. Freshman Laith Nickell finished in first place at the invite with a vault of 11 feet, six inches, which qualified him for the state meet in February. Jesse Bowen trailed Nickell with a vault of 10 feet, six inches. Andy Kopp came in fourth place with a vault a foot shorter than Bowen.
Senior Tyler Cromer had a sixth place finish in the shot put event with a throw of 37 feet, four inches. Cromer has added four feet to his throw since the indoor track season began at the end of November.
Kaleb Marshall and Austin Boyles helped to round out the top 10 in shot put with throws nearing 35 feet.
“Even though we did not win many events, our athletes competed against some of the top competition in the state,” Coach King said. “I like to see our athletes win, but I am just as excited to see them improve their times. Success is not just about winning.”