Male girls win first state title since 1972

Male girls win first state title since 1972

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Male girls win first state title since 1972

LEXINGTON, Ky. – For all the success Male High School has enjoyed across its athletic programs, it seemed unbelievable to many that the girls track and field team hadn’t won a state title since 1972.

Sheree Beaumont, who started as Male’s coach in 1980, said the drought didn’t bother her. But Male athletic director John Kelsey said that’s not the whole story.

“As a long-term coach, you want to win one,” Kelsey said. “You could have a 90-percent win percentage, but if you haven’t won it they say, ‘You haven’t won a title?’ It’s not like we’ve been bad, but she deserved a title.”

And she and the Bulldogs got one Saturday.

Led by a trio of victories by senior Taliyah Townsend, Male finished with 94 points to run away with the crown at the Republic Bank/KHSAA Class 3-A State Championships at the University of Kentucky’s Outdoor Track Complex.

“I just feel blessed,” Beaumont said. “These girls are great. They came through and focused. We just told them to stay focused and don’t do anything more than you normally do.”

North Hardin finished second in the team standings with 60 points and was followed by Manual (59), Bryan Station (48) and Tates Creek (46.33).

Henry Clay led a trio of Lexington schools on top of the boys standings with 65 points. Paul Dunbar (61) was second and was followed by Tates Creek (59.5), Male (49) and North Hardin (46).

* Girls: Townsend set a goal before the season to win the 100-, 200- and 400-meter state titles and completed the feat in impressive fashion Saturday.

She personal records in winning the 100 (11.95 seconds) and 400 (55.46 seconds) and took the 200 in 24.63 seconds. The 100 was the tightest race of the three, with Townsend defeating Bryan Station’s Brooke Raglin by .01 second.

“I practiced leaning all week because I knew it was going to be a tight race,” Townsend said.

Townsend, a senior, hopes to run at Baylor University but said she won’t sign with a college for two more weeks. She said she drew strength from her mother, Tamika, who was a state champion in the 400 at Eastern High and went on to run at Eastern Kentucky University.

“I had a lot of problems with my confidence,” Taliyah Townsend said. “Early in the season I was worried about my times for Baylor, and I was getting scared. My mom just told me not to worry about the times and perfect my race and my times came down.”

Townsend was one of several Louisville girls to capture titles Saturday, joining Eastern’s Ke’Asia Johnson-Bell (100 hurdles), Manual’s Alena Sapienza-Wright (1,600, 3,200) and Emma Kuntz (800), Assumption’s Rachel Lancaster (discus), Butler’s Alexis Gibbons (long jump) and Male’s Chimond Vaughn (triple jump).

Louisville teams also swept the relays, with Manual winning the 1,600 and 3,200, Eastern the 800 and Male the 400.

It was the third straight state title for Gibbons, a senior who has signed with the University of Louisville.

“I felt a little pressure,” Gibbons said of her quest for a three-peat. “But after I got my first jump out of the way, I felt pretty confident about it.”

* Boys: The story of the day came in the 100, where Paul Dunbar’s William Allen won with a time of 10.42 seconds to break the record of 10.46 seconds set by Olympian and former Lafayette star Tyson Gay in 2001.

“I just wanted to PR, but my coach told me that I could go out here and do it,” said Allen, a senior who has signed with Alabama. “I had a lot of doubt in myself because I’m not a (100 guy), but I came out here and executed and I did it. It was really overwhelming.”

Allen overwhelmed all of the competition Saturday, also winning the 200 and 400 and running the anchor leg on the Bulldogs’ victorious 1,600-relay team.

Central Hardin also set a state record in winning the 3,200 relay in 7:50.03. Trinity was second at 8:00.74.

Manual’s Yared Nuguse (1,600) and South Oldham’s Tanner Dowdy (3,200) were the only Louisville-area athletes to claim individual crowns.

Nuguse, a junior, won the 1,600 with a personal-record time of 4:12.10 and was followed by St. Xavier’s Matthew Thomas (4:14.06) and Madison Central’s Brennan Fields (4:18.34).

“If it wasn’t for them, I never would have gotten the PR,” Nuguse said of the push provided by Thomas and Fields. “Having them there encourages you to do more.”

Jason Frakes can be reached at (502) 582-4046 and jfrakes@courier-journal.com.

REPUBLIC BANK/KHSAA CLASS 3-A TRACK AND FIELD MEET

GIRLS

* Team scores – 1. Male 94; 2. North Hardin 60; 3. Manual 59; 4. Bryan Station 48; 5. Tates Creek 46.33; 6. Eastern 40; 7. Assumption 37; 8. Central 35; 9. Hopkinsville 30; 10. Lafayette 22; 12. Butler 18; 14. Sacred Heart 14.33; 16. Jeffersontown 13; 22. Bullitt East 9; 23. South Oldham 8; 34. Oldham County 2; 36. North Bullitt 1.

* 3,200-meter relay – 1. Manual (Rachel Been, Labreea Hall, Grace duPlessis, Emma Kuntz), 9:23.66; 2. Hopkinsville, 9:34.43.

* 100 hurdles – 1. Ke’Asia Johnson-Bell (Eastern), 14.56; 2. Rebecca Cline (Campbell County), 15.15.

* 100 – 1. Taliyah Townsend (Male), 11.95; 2. Brooke Raglin (Bryan Station), 11.96.

* 800 relay – 1. Eastern (Lauren Buchanan, Jumyia Denning, Tarryn Long, D’Myia Thornton), 1:42.27; 2. Tates Creek, 1:42.50.

* 1,600 – 1. Alena Sapienza-Wright (Manual), 5:02.24; 2. Kaitlyn Lacy (Male), 5:04.71.

* 400 relay – 1. Male (Chimond Vaughn, Anaiya Crawford, Taylor Kraft, Tashyonna Bethel), 48.42; 2. Bryan Station, 48.88.

* 400 – 1. Taliyah Townsend (Male), 55.46; 2. Alexis Gibbons (Butler), 56.41.

* 300 hurdles – 1. Alexandra Lawson (North Hardin), 44.58; 2. Rhyann Bush (Central), 44.88.

* 800 – 1. Emma Kuntz (Manual), 2:14.31; 2. Labreea Hall (Manual), 2:16.70.

* 200 – 1. Taliyah Townsend (Male), 24.63; 2. Brooke Raglin (Bryan Station), 25.07.

* 3,200 – 1. Alena Sapienza-Wright (Manual), 11:08.12; 2. Hallie Searcy (South Oldham), 11:10.25.

* 1,600 relay – 1. Manual (Grace duPlessis, Labreea Hall, Alena Sapienza-Wright, Emma Kuntz), 3:54.00; 2. Hopkinsville, 3:58.90.

* Shot put – 1. Allison Harper (Greenwood), 39-1.75; 2. Paige Pettell (North Hardin), 37-10.75.

* Discus – 1. Rachel Lancaster (Assumption), 131-1; 2. Paige Pettell (North Hardin), 119-8.

* Long jump – 1. Alexis Gibbons (Butler), 19-9.25; 2. Jaylynn Francois (North Hardin), 17-5.

* Triple jump – 1. Chimond Vaughn (Male), 36-10.5; 2. Molly O’Dea (Assumption), 36-6.5.

* High jump – 1. Heaven Bigelow (Tates Creek), 5-3; 2. Taliyah Colone (East Jessamine), 5-2.

* Pole vault – 1. Jaci Bickett (Henderson County), 12-6; 2. Kristina Leggas (Lafayette), 12-6.

BOYS

* Team scores – 1. Henry Clay 65; 2. Paul Dunbar 61; 3. Tates Creek 59.5; 4. Male 49; 5. North Hardin 46; 6. St. Xavier 34; 7. Central Hardin 30; 8. (tie) South Oldham, Ballard 28; 10. Scott County 27.5; 11. (tie) Central, Manual 24; 15. Trinity 16.5; 17. Pleasure Ridge Park 15; 25. Oldham County 7; 27. (tie) Bullitt East, Atherton 5; 31. Eastern 4; 38. Fern Creek 1.

* 3,200-meter relay – 1. Central Hardin (Jeremiah Harp, Josiah Harp, Patrick Quire, Christian Wright), 7:50.03; 2. Trinity, 8:00.74.

* 110 hurdles – 1. Matt Froschauer (Ryle), 14.07; 2. Isaiah McCall (Bryan Station), 14.13.

* 100 – 1. William Allen (Paul Dunbar), 10.42; 2. Kasaun James (North Hardin), 10.50.

* 800 relay – 1. Henry Clay (Tyree Clarke, Jack Jackson, Langston Jackson, Ramond Jackson), 1:28.37; 2. South Oldham, 1:29.34.

* 1,600 – 1. Yared Nuguse (Manual), 4:12.10; 2. Matthew Thomas (St. Xavier), 4:14.06.

* 400 relay – 1. Henry Clay (Tyree Clarke, Jack Jackson, Langston Jackson, Ramond Jackson), 42.23; 2. Male, 42.89.

* 400 – 1. William Allen (Paul Dunbar), 47.39; 2. Kasaun James (North Hardin), 48.01.

* 300 hurdles – 1. Isaiah McCall (Bryan Station), 38.03; 2. Blake Cleary (Bowling Green), 38.89.

* 800 – 1. Christian Wright (Central Hardin), 1:52.31; 2. Mikah Bailey (Paul Dunbar), 1:53.20.

* 200 – 1. William Allen (Paul Dunbar), 21.04; 2. Kasaun James (North Hardin), 21.21.

* 3,200 – 1. Tanner Dowdy (South Oldham), 9:23.05; 2. Alex Mortimer (Tates Creek), 9:26.58.

* 1,600 relay – 1. Paul Dunbar (Braxton Edge, Mikah Bailey, Ethan Tan, William Allen), 3:21.62; 2. Central, 3:22.48.

* Shot put – 1. Bryan Hudson (Scott County), 55-1.75; 2. Landon Young (Lafayette), 54-6.25.

* Discus – 1. Landon Young (Lafayette), 177-7; 2. Bryan Hudson (Scott County), 170-3.

* Long jump – 1. Jaron Brooks (Henry Clay), 23-4.25; 2. Devin Gentry (Male), 22-7.

* Triple jump – 1. Jaron Brooks (Henry Clay), 47-5.75; 2. Devin Gentry (Male), 45-7.25.

* High jump – 1. Jaron Brooks (Henry Clay), 6-10; 2. Patrick Kelly (Tates Creek), 6-8.

* Pole vault – 1. Ed Huzyak (South Warren), 13-6; 2. Ben Stone (Tates Creek), 13-0.

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