4A track: Bloomingdale relay runs smartest

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Sat. May 4, 2013 | Joey Knight | Email

4A track: Bloomingdale relay runs smartest

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JACKSONVILLE — Bloomingdale junior Andrew LeBlanc felt the southerly gusts, saw the rain being blown horizontally, peered at the gray northeast Florida sky, and knew it was the Bulls’ day.

“I felt pretty good,” the junior 4x800-meter relay anchor said, “because I knew it would be a tactical race and that’s to our advantage.”

On another wretched afternoon at Hodges Stadium, strategy melded with the surreal to give LeBlanc and his teammates — Kevin Heron, John Bryant and Ryan Chadderton — a state title at the Class 4A championships.

In last place in the fast heat at one point, the Bulls rallied behind LeBlanc and Heron to prevail on a slick rubberized track in eight minutes, 4.84 seconds.

“It’s like a dream,” said Bryant, who ran the opening leg. “I never thought in a million years we’d be here, like this.”

The Bulls’ triumph opened a waterlogged meet condensed due to a sprawling cell of light rain and winds gusting at roughly 20 mph.

With conditions at their worst, the Florida High School Athletic Association Games Committee Jury of Appeals opted for timed running finals, eliminating the prelims. Pole vaulting was delayed until mid-afternoon. Athletes in races and field events essentially received no break.

“They’ve got to get (the meet) done, so it’s fair to everybody,” veteran Plant girls coach Roy Harrison said. “Nobody has an advantage, so you either do it or you don’t. It’s who’s mentally tougher.”
Ironically, the day’s local highlight arrived when the weather was at its worst.

Heron, one of three juniors on the Bloomingdale 4x800 team, assumed the momentum gained during Chadderton's leg to put the Bulls in third place entering the final split.

When LeBlanc crossed the finish 800 meters later, Bloomingdale had a five-second lead on runnerup Olympia (8:09.72).

“I had some leg speed so I kind of coasted the first lap and tried to get close to the pack,” said Heron, who also placed fifth in the open 800. “Then on the second lap I knew I could use my speed to get us in striking range and to (LeBlanc).”

Freedom senior Faith Woodard and Alonso senior Quatasia Fantroy captured Hillsborough County’s only other titles, winning the girls high jump and triple jump, respectively.

The high jump title (cleared 5-6) was Woodard’s second in a row, and third consecutive top-two finish. Running with the wind but on a slippery runway, Fantroy managed a personal-best effort (38 feet, 9.75 inches) to become the Ravens' first state track champion.

Other local highlights:

• The Wharton senior tandem of Mikayla Barber and Tyler Watson placed third and fourth, respectively, in the girls 300 hurdles, and helped the Wildcats’ 4x400 relay team place sixth. Watson also was seventh in the 100 hurdles, earning a county-best three medals.

• Plant seniors Scarlett Fox and Caroline Gibson placed fourth and seventh, respectively, in the girls 1,600, and helped the Panthers 4x800 team to a fifth-place finish. Panthers sophomore pole vaulter Rachel Goding was second (11 feet).

• Plant senior Julia Rodriguez was runnerup in the girls 3,200. In the boys race, Newsome senior Lars Benner nearly ran down Miami Sunset’s Kenneth Castro for second place, but a photo review deemed he placed third.

• Bloomingdale senior Julie Roggeman earned two medals, placing sixth in the girls 800 and running a leg on the Bulls’ seventh-place 4x800 team.

• Alonso senior William Taylor-Haynes finished third in the boys 110 hurdles and tied for eighth in the high jump. Tampa Bay Tech senior Deontae Williams earned medals in the boys 100 (seventh) and 200 (sixth).

Photo: Freedom senior Sandra Akachukwu finishes second in the long jump.

4A meet at Jacksonville
Girls
Team results:
  1 St. Thomas Aquinas 92, 7  Plant 27, 11 Wharton 20, 14 Freedom 18, 19 Alonso 10, 28 Bloomingdale 5, 35 Pinellas Park 3  
Individual results: High jump: 1 Woodard (Fre) 5-06.00, 9 Robinson (Cou) 4-10.00, 9 Malizia (Pla) 4-10.00; pole vault: 1 Sergeant (LM) 11-06.00, 2 Goding (Pla) 11-00.00, 5 Smith (Wha) 11-00.00, 11 Arsenault (Pla) 9-06.00; long jump: 1 Morrison (Kil) 19-04.50, 2 Akachukwu (Fre) 18-05.25; triple jump: 1 Fantroy (Alo) 38-09.75, 12 Jackson (Cou) 35-01.50; discus: 1 Merrick (SarRiv) 120-07, 6 Laska (PP) 110-10, 13 Bush (PC) 93-08; shot put: 1 Atkins (Aqu) 42-11.50, 10 Bush (PC) 33-10.00, 14 Benninghoff (Alo) 31-05.50; 4x800: 1 St. Thomas Aquinas(Jean-Baptiste, Kalis, Cruz) 9:25.41, 5 Plant (Gibson, Bado, Pitisci, Fox) 9:35.64, 7 Bloomingdale (Clemmer, Wingfield, Roggeman, Barrett) 9:48.10, 11 Freedom (Mitchell, Arfaras, Ford, Veal) 9:57.95, 13 Newsome  (Cajas, Miller, Borgen, Jackson) 10:07.42; 100: 1 Davis-White (BA) 11.70, 11 Simpkins (PP) 12.59, 12 Akachukwu (Fre) 12.59, 16 Desormo (TBT) 12.97; 100 hurdles: 1 Morrison (Kil) 13.82, 7 Watson (Wha) 15.02, 11 Simpson (Plant) 15.60, 14 Carter (Riv) 16.74, 15 Barber (Wha) 16.76; 1,600: 1 Blake (DrP) 5:00.51, 4 Fox (Pla) 5:10.77, 7 Gibson (Pla) 5:15.67, 13 Barrett (Blo) 5:30.74; 4x100: 1 Boyd Anderson (Gordon, Davis-White, White, Gebor) 46.66, 12 St. Petersburg  (Fields, Bentley, Kirkland, Black) 50.98, 13 East Lake (Nichols, Vickers, Del Duca, Leggio) 51.95; 400: 1 Ellis (Aqu) 54.96, 12 Woodard (Fre) 58.86, 14 Hardy (Wha) 1:01.91, 15 Speicher (Riv) 1:02.35; 300 hurdles: 1 Gordon (BA) 42.16, 3 Barber (Wha) 44.35, 4 Watson (Wha) 45.26, 11 Simpson (Pla) 46.80; 800: 1 Howell (SR) 2:10.12, 6 Roggeman (Blo) 2:20.7, 13 Bado (Pla) 2:29.22, 14 Suski (Sem) 2:32.38, 15 Clemmer (Blo) 2:39.52; 200: 1 Davis-White (BA) 23.0, 10 Akachukwu (Fre) 25.12, 14 Simpkins (PP) 25.85; 3,200: 1 1 Blake (DrP) 10:58.43, 2 Rodriguez (Pla) 11:04.34, 12 Sullivan (Pla) 11:38.74, 13 Gibson (Pla) 11:50.31, 15 Montgomery (Pla) 11:54.29; 4x400: 1 St. Thomas Aquinas (Sparling, Jean-Baptiste, Ellis, Lewis) 3:45.01, 6 Wharton (Hardy, Barber, Watson, Outen) 4:00.36, 11 Alonso (Torres, Floyd, Robertson, Stewart) 4:05.81, 14 Plant (Malizia, Pitisci, Asgedom, Hagan)  4:08.79, 15 Freedom (Smith, Woodard, Mitchell, Cru) 4:09.10

Boys
Team results:
1 Olympia 49, 12 Bloomingdale 19, 20 Newsome 13, 20 St. Petersburg 13, 28 Countryside 8, 31 Alonso 6.50, 32 Tampa Bay 6, 36 Durant , 45 Plant 3, 45 Riverview 3, 51 East Lake, 1, 51 Northeast 1
Individual results: High jump: 1 Williams (Ame) 6-06.00, 8 Taylor-Haynes (Alo); pole vault: 1 Washburn (Oly) 14-06.00, 1 Ellis (StP) 14-06.00, 7 Dalton (Cou) 12-06.00; long jump: 1 Collins (WP) 22-10.00, 4 Trott (Blo) 21-04.50, 9 Thompson (TBT) 20-07.50, 10 Robinson (Alo) 20-04.00, 11 Scott (EL) 20-03.25; triple jump: 1 Clark (CR) 46-09.5, 8 Scott (EL) 44-04.25; discus: 1 Delgado (CP) 160-06, 10 Caldwell (Wha) 124-05,  11 Webb (Pla) 124-00, 15 Kerr (StP) 83-03; shot put: 1 Calloway (Man) 58-05.00, 5 Kerr (StP) 49-10.00, 13 Steinberg (New) 44-11.75; 4x800: 1 Bloomingdale  (Bryant, Chadderton, Heron, LeBlanc) 8:04.84, 8 Countryside (Bennett, Fitch, Llewellyn, McKenna) 8:18.03, 12 Newsome (Jackson, Bolduc, Benner, Martinez) 8:25.89, 13 Freedom (Vollmer, Glover, Monts, Harvey) 8:26.10; 110 hurdles: 1 Grinley (PV) 13.93, 3 Taylor-Haynes (Alo) 14.17, 8 Chambliss (TBT) 14.97; 100: 1 Rasul (Col) 10.81, 6 McCoy (Riv) 10.94, 7 Williams (TBT) 10.94; 1,600: 1 Arroyo (Col) 4:15.50, 13 Llewellyn (Cou) 4:39.73, 15 LeBlanc (Blo) 4:43.70, 16 Guyton (Pla) 4:44.68; 4x100: 1 South Plantation (Thomas, Archer, Alexander, Franklin) 41.98, 14 Newsome  (Jackson, Bryant, Smith, Anderson) 44.99; 400: 1 Glover (DrP) 48.62, 4 Jackson (New) 49.49, 10 Davis (Cou) 50.86, 14 Lawrence (Alo) 51.73; 300 hurdles: 1 Grinley (PV) 37.47, 6 Kelly (Dur) 39.81; 800: 1 Arroyo (Col) 1:54.09, 5 Heron (Blo) 1:58.62, 6 Groh (Pla) 1:59.39, 7 Martinez (New) 1:59.44, 12 LeBlanc (Blo) 2:01.33; 200: 1 Henderson (SBr) 21.20, 6 Williams (TBT) 21.80, 7 Watson (Dur) 21.89, 8 Colebrook (Ne) 21.92; 3,200: 1 Arroyo (Col) 9:30.75, 3 Benner (New) 9:34.90, 4 McKenna (Cou) 9:36.31, 12 Chandler (StP) 10:02.15, 14 Weaver (Pla) 10:09.49; 4x400: 1 Dr. Phillips (Bryant, Smith, Thomas, Glover) 3:18.62, 12 Countryside (Santa-Maria, Bennett, Fitch, Davis) 3:32.00, 13 Riverview (Carolina, Harris, Poole, Williams) 3:32.64, 14 Freedom (Glover, Hendry, Smith, Davis) 3:34.11

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