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By Dennis Atwood - email@example.com
CHARLOTTESVILLE -- The Strasburg Rams finished second in the girls Region B meet as did Clarke County in the boys meet at Monticello High School on Thursday evening.
Junior Katlyn Ayers and sophomore Anthony Wallis each took first-place honors in two distance running events.
Ayers clocked in at 5:19.54 in the 1,600-meter run, eight seconds ahead of the second finisher, and Wallis motored at 4:27.52 (personal best) to win the boys 1,600-meter event.
Ayers took top 800 meter honors with a 2:19.98 effort, a mere .38 seconds off the meet record.
"I'm a little bummed that I was that close to setting the record because at districts I got a 2:19:59, so ugh, but I'm happy, " Ayers said. "It's better to have the longer event first because it warms up my legs better.
"But I was really tired today after the mile [1600 meter] and I was a little worried going into the 800, but once I got started I was fine."
Wallis's second top finish was a 9:46.10 in the 3,200 meter run.
"This year I've been running around a 4:38," Wallis said. "At districts I ran a 4:30.5, and this meet I ran a 4:27 and I plan on running a lot faster at states. I run cross country and I plan on being really good [in that] next year."
The top six individual finishers and top three relay teams in each event qualify for the state track meet. The Rams had state qualifiers in 13 events.
Second-place Strasburg finishers were Sarah Elbon in the 1,600-meter run (5:43.61) and Hannah Clinedinst in the 100-meter hurdles (16:34).
Elbon also finished fifth in 3200-meter run (12:33.65), and other state qualifiers were Joshua Speaker (fifth in shot put, 44-05.25) ), Taylor Cockerille (fourth in shot put, 35-00.0 and discus, 105-05), Mark Colson (third in 1,600-meter run, 4:32.55), Clinedinst (sixth in 300-meter hurdles, 51.17), and Dylan Callaway (sixth in 800-meter run, 2:03.87).
"This is the first time that we've been in the team trophy hunt since the 2005 season, so it's good to get back to where we start to claim some big hardware. We're pretty excited about that," Strasburg coach Glenn Proctor said. "Actually, I think we can do better next week [at states], particularly our girls.
"Even though we're taking more boys, our girls are good enough to be competitive and score well at a state meet. This a prelude to it, a nice stepping stone and we're looking forward to bigger and better things next week."
The Eagles had 17 individuals and teams achieve state qualifying marks.
Steven Trayer placed second in the boys 3,200-meter run (9:52) and Paul Myer took fifth in the same event (10:16.41). Myer finished second in the boys 1,600-meter run (4:32.55).
The Clarke County boys 400-meter relay team (Thomas Grant, Ron Anderson, Chris Collins, Daulton Teaford) finished second with a 44.38 time, and the girls 1,600 group (Kelly Lee, Alsberry, Amanda Spain, and Megan Waring) also finished second with a 4:19.18 effort.
Third place finishers were Caitlin Lake (100 meter hurdles, 17.06), Nadine Voelker (shot put, 35-04.00), Andrea Gaither (100-meter dash, 12.54, and 400-meter dash, 1:01.75).
Clarke County's girls were flying high with three qualifiers in the triple jump -- Miles Crosby in fourth (33-03.00), Natalie Flaff in fifth (32-07.25), and freshman Erin Hall in sixth place (32-07.25).
"Our girls stepped up and did a good job," Eagles coach Andre Kidrick said. "Our girls team loves to complete, they have a lot of heart and they really do compete. In recent years they love to step up in the big meets.
"Caitlin Lake, last year's state champion in the girls 100-meter hurdles, still has hip issues. She'll need surgery after the season."
The Stonewall Jackson Generals boys 1,600 relay team (Trevor Warner, Michael Strazella, Christian Frost, and Cole Shaffer) took first place with 3:28.59.
The Generals had state qualifiers in six other events, led by second-place finishes by John Michael Pirtle in the 100-meter hurdles (14.88), and Dylan Shirley's 51.25 in the 400-meter dash.
For Central, Lindsey Toothman finished second in the girls triple jump (33-06.25) and fourth in the long jump (15-10.25). Brandon Poff took third in the 3,200-meter run (10:10.82) and sixth in the 1,600-meter run (4:39.52). Logan Patrick took fourth in the 800-meter run (2:02.94).
In team scoring, Manassas Park took first place for both the boys and girls teams. The Eagles took fourth among the girls teams and Central finished 11th.
Stonewall Jackson placed fourth among the boys teams and Central came in 14th.