High School Track & Field

Whale Branch boys ready to make run at state track title this weekend

Several Beaufort and Jasper County athletes have gold within reach

mmccombs@beaufortgazette.comMay 11, 2012 

This could be the year for Whale Branch. It's not like it's been a long wait, though.

In only its second year of existence, Whale Branch has to be considered one of the favorites to take home the Class 1-A boys championship at this weekend's S.C. Track and Field State Championships at Spring Valley High School in Columbia.

The Warriors finished sixth last year in their first state meet. The return of the core of that team, coupled with the addition of senior sprinter Andre Watson, has the Warriors' coaches thinking title.

"Probably top three sprinter in the state," Whale Branch athletic director and track assistant Carlos Cave said of Watson. "He's the fastest in the 200 (meters) in South Carolina. At one point this season, he had the fastest time in the 100. He anchors our 4x100. He's a strong sprinter and a strong athlete."

Don't try to get Cave to say Watson is the difference this year, though. The Warriors are strong all around, qualifying in 11 of the 17 events.

"Our 4x800 (relay) is strong," Cave said. "Charles Jiles, he's outstanding in the 800."

Jiles is qualified individually, as well, in the 800 meters and the 1,600 meters. And Deonta Glover, a sophomore, is qualified in the 1,600 and 3,200 -- events he placed fifth in last year.

"He knows what it's about," Cave said of Glover. "We expect him to be no worse than third in the events he's entered in."

Cave believes the Warriors are more mentally prepared for the pressure of the state championships than some of their opponents.

"The one plus that we have is that we run in a lot of big boy meets with the big boy teams," Cave said. "We don't run in the little boy meets."

While Whale Branch has it's eyes on championships, both individual and team, several other area athletes hope to bring home gold, as well.

Among them:

  • Ridgeland's Alvin Brown is defending his 1-A boys discus crown. He's also qualified in the shot put.

  • The Hardeeville girls 4x100 team of Tydasha Rivers, Aaliyah Hill, Ravon Grant and Raven Grant will run for the Class 1-A title after finishing second last year.

  • The Hilton Head Island High School boys are the defending state champions in Class 3-A, and behind the strength of their distance runners -- including state cross country champion Jack Manesiotis -- should put up a good point total again this year.

  • Hilton Head Island High's Faith Lifer is qualified in the girls 1,600 meters, an event she finished sixth in last year.

  • And Beaufort High's Madeline Aune is looking to do something special in the Class 4-A girls pole vault -- break the state record of 12 feet, 8 inches.

  • "I'm hoping that she can get 12-10 or 13 feet," Beaufort coach Herbert Glaze said. "She's pretty excited. Last week, she had 12-6. She could have went higher but she decided to wait.

    "She works hard every day, and good work, hard work pays off. And I think it will pay off this weekend."

    2012 S.C. TRACK & FIELD STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS

    Today-Saturday, Spring Valley High School, Columbia

    Events begin at 5:45 tonight, 9 a.m. Saturday and run all day

    Admission: $5 tonight, $8 Saturday

    TV: The event will stream live at www.SCHSL.tv and be available on demand later in the week for Time Warner Cable subscribers

    Event schedule: http://schsl.org/2011%20forms/trschedule.pdf

    BOYS

    4-A

    110 Hurdles

    Henry Jenkins, Beaufort

    Devonte Green, Beaufort

    Randy Thomas, Beaufort

    400 Hurdles

    Henry Jenkins, Beaufort

    4x400 Relay

    Beaufort (Darren Chaplin, Joshua Skanes, Desmond Howard, Randy Thomas)

    4x800 Relay

    Beaufort (Joshua Skanes, Desmond Howard, Seth Andrews, Terae Davis)

    Long jump

    Martin Washington, Beaufort

    Triple jump

    Parrish Holmes, Beaufort

    High jump

    Martin Washington, Beaufort

    Discus

    DeEndre Jefferson-Fields, Beaufort

    3-A

    200

    Desmond Bonaparte, Hilton Head Island

    400

    Desmond Bonaparte, Hilton Head Island

    800

    Demetrius Smalls, Bluffton

    Matthew Alex Couch, Hilton Head Island

    1,600

    Jack Manesiotis, Hilton Head Island

    3,200

    Jack Manesiotis, Hilton Head Island

    Sean McMahon, Hilton Head Island

    4x400 Relay

    Hilton Head Island (Matthew Alex Couch, Desmond Bonaparte, Robbie Iulo, Michael Julian)

    Bluffton (Muhammad Abdul Malik, Michael Spence, Demetrius Smalls, DeVaughn Frazier)

    4x800 Relay

    Hilton Head Island (Jack Manesiotis, Matthew Alex Couch, Sean McMahon, Robbie Iulo)

    Long jump

    Michael Julian, Hilton Head Island

    Triple jump

    Justice Oliver, Battery Creek

    DeVaughn Frazier, Bluffton

    Shot put

    Shakil Gause, Battery Creek

    Discus

    Shakil Gause, Battery Creek

    1-A

    100

    Andre Watson, Whale Branch

    200

    Andre Watson, Whale Branch

    800

    Charles Jiles, Whale Branch

    1,600

    Charles Jiles, Whale Branch

    Devonta Glover, Whale Branch

    3,200

    Devonta Glover, Whale Branch

    Nicholas Reid, Ridgeland

    110 Hurdles

    Antione Johnson, Ridgeland

    Xavier Capers, Ridgeland

    400 Hurdles

    Devonte Delaney, Whale Branch

    Antione Johnson, Ridgeland

    4x100 Relay

    Whale Branch (John Little, Joshua Fields, Michael Smalls, Andre Watson)

    4x400 Relay

    Ridgeland (Immanual White, Israel Allen, Danzell Mitchell, Desjon Frazier)

    Whale Branch (Andrew Byam, Devonte Delaney, Andre Watson, Charles Jiles)

    4x800 Relay

    Whale Branch (Vishawn Burrage, Brandon Morton, Devntae Lykes, Charles Jiles)

    Ridgeland (Danzell Mitchell, Donald Jenkins, Marquis McClennon, Nicholas Reid)

    Triple jump

    Saydrian Williams, Ridgeland

    Devonte Alston, Whale Branch

    High jump

    Jacob Feruson, Ridgeland

    Devonte Alston, Whale Branch

    Shot put

    Wesley Scott, Ridgeland

    Alvin Brown, Ridgeland

    Discus

    Alvin Brown, Ridgeland

    GIRLS

    4-A

    100

    Stephanie Taylor-Pollock, Beaufort

    100 Hurdles

    Alexia Neal, Beaufort

    400 Hurdles

    Alexia Neal, Beaufort

    4x100 Relay

    Beaufort (Stephanie Taylor-Pollock, Veneshia Holmes, Tiffany Robinson, Latoya Smalls)

    4x400 Relay

    Beaufort (Aaliyah Smalls, Latoya Smalls, Stephanie Taylor-Pollock, Veneshia Holmes)

    High jump

    Alexia Neal, Beaufort

    Pole Vault

    Madeline Aune, Beaufort

    3-A

    800

    Rachel Friend, Hilton Head Island

    1,600

    Faith Lifer, Hilton Head Island

    3,200

    Savannah Schepp, Hilton Head Island

    100 Hurdles

    Gretchen Brown, Battery Creek

    400 Hurdles

    Johnnie Gaston, Bluffton

    4x100 Relay

    Battery Creek (Gretchen Brown, Daisja Cannon, La'Schirrae Morral, Quamecha Morrison)

    4x800 Relay

    Hilton Head Island (Faith Lifer, Christina Mason, Abi Short, Keyuntay Heyward)

    Long jump

    Gretchen Brown, Battery Creek

    Triple jump

    Gretchen Brown, Battery Creek

    High jump

    Quamecha Morrison, Batttery Creek

    1-A

    100

    Tydasha Rivers, Hardeeville

    3,200

    Breandrea Washington, Ridgeland

    400 Hurdles

    Rayshaundra Rankins, Ridgeland

    4x100 Relay

    Hardeeville (Tydasha Rivers, Aaliyah Hill, Ravon Grant, Raven Grant)

    Long jump

    Aaliyha Hill, Hardeeville

    Triple jump

    Aaliyha Hill, Hardeeville

    High jump

    Aaliyha Hill, Hardeeville

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