TAMPA — With Tampa teams dominating the team standings Wednesday at the Class 2A, Region 3 meet at Berkeley Prep, no individual shined brighter than Gibbs senior Jerosan Fletcher.
"Last year, she broke 58s at regionals; this year when we started at 58, I knew we were progressing," Gladiators coach Natalee Allan said. "She wants it; she's hungry and we're not coming back from Jacksonville without a ribbon."
Fletcher made her case Wednesday, winning titles in the 400 meters (57.59), 200 (26.15) and long jump. She set a personal-best 17-10 in the latter.
Fletcher was in a car accident prior to districts last week, yet it hardly showed as she won event after event in style.
"I'm tired but I never give up," Fletcher said.
The Gibbs girls were fifth with 57.5 points, the highest finish of any Pinellas team. Holy names claimed first with 91.5 points.
For the boys, Gibbs' Jaquez President claimed runnerup spots in both the 400 (49.90) and the 200 (22.45).
The Dunedin dynamic duo of Ahmad Middleton and Olivia Welsh punched their tickets to state as well.
Welsh cleared 10-6 for second in the pole vault and ran a dominant 14.60 in the 100 hurdles final. It reset the sophomore's personal record. Middleton was hit by another runner in the 110 hurdles final and missed qualifying. But he rallied to win the 300 hurdles (38.82) and the long jump (22-0.5).
"I'm relived that I made it but I really wanted to make in the 110s; I will just have to show out in the long jump," said Middleton, who got a personal record in the long jump.
Lakewood had the best Pinellas finish on the boys side at fifth with 49 points, 48 behind champion Jesuit. The Spartans took second in the 4x100 relay in 42.47.
Class A-2: Clearwater Central Catholic took advantage of an abundance of skill players in football to finish fifth with 44 points at Orlando First Academy.
Diquan Walker was second in the long jump (21-5.75). CJ Cotman took third in the 100 (10.98) and fourth in the 200 (23.03). The Marauders' 4x100 (45.02) and 4x400 (3:39.85) relay teams each finished second.
CCC's girls were eighth with 29 points. Hayley Moyer won the 400 (1:02.19) and took third in the 200 (26.84).
Class 3A-10: Osceola's boys finished third at Clearwater High, the highest among Pinellas County teams.
The Warriors took the top three spots in the pole vault. Carson Waters continued his domination of the event with a winning height of 15 feet, 1 inch, more than 2 feet ahead of his teammates.
Boca Ciega did well in the field events with Kenyatta Anderson winning the high jump (6-4) and Victor Thompson taking first in the triple jump (43-10.75).
Clearwater's William Anderson was a champion in the shot put (45-2). Northeast's Miles Price won the 300 hurdles (41.65) and took second in the 110 hurdles (16.94).
On the girls side, Osceola was fifth with 65 points. Jeanna Cube was a big point scorer for the Warriors, finishing second in the 110 hurdles (15.82) and high jump (5-4), third in the 300 hurdles (50.11) and fourth in the long jump (16-2.25). As expected, Osceola's Jen Kistemaker won the pole vault, clearing 9-6.
Clearwater's Erin Avers was third in the 800 (2:22.20) and Largo's Daisha Brown was third in the triple jump (35-8).
Bob Putnam, Times staff writer