Allen wins shot put, leads Warriors to second-place finish

Isaiah Allen threw a personal record of 58-06 on his last throw and won the event at Saturday's Apple Blossom Invitational at James Wood High School in Winchester. Robert Niedzwiecki/For The Northern Virginia Daily

WINCHESTER – The pressure was on, and Isaiah Allen delivered.

As the Sherando junior was preparing for his last throw in the boys discus at the Apple Blossom Track and Field Invitational, many of the fans and athletes began to clap in unison. He said it’s something the fans do when someone has been making really good throws.

The extra buzz from the crowd may have given Allen just what he needed as he threw the shot put 58 feet and 6 inches.

“This is the second meet we’ve done that,” Allen said of the clapping. “We did it at Handley, and that helped me get the win there. So it might be something that we have to start doing, but that definitely helped me get it out there. That lets me know that everybody around here is watching, so it’s time to perform. So I know nothing can go wrong. And I got to hit everything I need to so I can throw far.”

Allen’s throw helped him take first place in shot put and aided Sherando as it took second place as a team in the boys meet held Saturday at James Wood High School.

Allen’s top throw of the season and his career was 55-09.50. However, on Saturday he said he set a personal record on his first throw and continued to set a new personal record with each of his six throws.

“It was just a good day, one of the best series (of throws) I’ve had in a long time,” he said. “So I was really happy with that.”

Allen also placed second in the discus with a throw of 145-06. Skyline’s Tucker Fortney, who placed eighth in the shot put, won the discus with a throw of 145-11.

“It was a rough week of practice, and I came out thinking I’d throw better than I actually did,” Fortney said. “I’m not too happy with what I threw. I know I can throw further. So I’ll just have to work harder this week and hopefully throw better (this week). It’s good to win. This is actually my first gold of the season. Even though I didn’t perform at my best, it still feels good.”

Sherando’s T.J. Washington won the triple jump, while Strasburg’s Stephen Kloosterman placed second in the event.

Washington had a leap of 45-08.25, while Kloosterman had a jump of 41-09.50. Washington placed second in the long jump, and he said he wasn’t happy with that performance and wanted to make up for it in the triple jump.

“I just had to make sure I got my phases right,” Washington said. “When I get my phases right then everything else should be good.”

For Kloosterman, it was his second consecutive second-place finish in a big invitational as he had the same result in last weekend’s meet at Woodgrove High School. He said that he enjoys competing in bigger meets and against bigger schools.

“They push you,” Kloosterman said. “It pushes you further. For me, I feel like it helps me to get to where I’m better at that event.”

Sherando’s Kyle Holliday won the 110-meter hurdles in a time of 15.99. He said the wind slowed him down. Otherwise, he probably would have set a personal record.

“I was hoping for a PR,” Holliday said. ” I knew I had tons of guys who were just on the same competitive level. I wasn’t expecting to win. I knew whoever won we would be really happy with each other, and we were all just looking for a PR.”

Sherando’s Keli Lawson placed eighth in the high jump (5-10) and third in the triple jump (41-08.50). His teammate Jabril Hayes was fourth in the long jump (20-03.75). Sherando finished sixth in the 3,200-meter relay (8:38.71).

Darius Lane placed fifth for Sherando in the 110-meter hurdles (17.21). The Warriors were fifth in the 400-meter relay (44.95). Sherando’s Ty Waits was third in the 400-meter dash (51.50), and Holliday was seventh in the 300-meter hurdles (44.29).

Skyline junior Asher Pastore was eighth in the triple jump (39-09.50), and teammate Jordan Price placed third in the 800-meter run (2:02.88).

“Pastore was able to make it into the finals (in triple jump),” Skyline coach Steve Burton said. “He’s coming along. Once he learns how to jump, he’s still tending to lean over a little bit there at the end. But once he gets that finish part there’s no reason why he can’t be out there competing.”

Warren County, which didn’t send a full team to the meet, was led by D.J. Staton’s sixth-place finish in the 3,200-meter run (10:11.84). Warren County’s 3,200-meter relay team finished fourth in a time of 8:33.47.

“They were one second off their best time,” Warren County distance coach Mike Tanner said of the 3,200-meter relay team. “So they ran pretty well.”

Skyline finished 11th as a team with 18 points, while Strasburg and Warren County tied for 13th with 8 points. Loudoun County won the boys meet with 91.5 points, while Sherando had 77.

Sherando coach Jamie McCarty said that due to the school’s prom being held Saturday night the Warriors weren’t able to use everybody in all the events that he would have liked to. All of Sherando’s athletes left before the end of the meet, and McCarty said they could have been closer to first-place had they had the full team for the entire meet.

“(Loudoun) County they had all their guys in all their stuff that I can tell of, and they are a really good team,” he said. “To be even close to them right now makes me feel pretty good going forward. It just shows that the guys had a pretty good day and put themselves in a good position to be successful. And a couple points here and a couple points there, and an inch here and a second there and maybe it’s a different story. But I’m still proud of their overall effort.”