Five county teams take part in MLK Classic

Published 11:11 am Tuesday, January 19, 2016

By BAKER ELLIS / Sports Editor

BIRMINGHAM – There were 42 girls teams and 52 boys teams that descended upon the Birmingham Crossplex on Monday, Jan. 18 for the Martin Luther King Indoor Track Classic. Of those 94 combined teams, five came from Shelby County and had runners score points in the meet.

Two county boys’ teams competed in the event, Oak Mountain and Helena. Oak Mountain was the highest-scoring team from the county at the meet, as the Eagles finished sixth overall in the 6A-7A division with 27 points. The majority of Oak Mountain’s points on the day came from the 3,200-meter run, where Cole Stidfole placed second overall and Caleb Van Geffen placed seventh. Stidfole placed second with a time of 9:44.23, which broke the old meet record set last year by Caleb Casolaro of Fairhope. Unfortunately, Benjamin Knox of Hewitt-Trussville ran a 9:38.73 to also break the previous meet record and take home the event’s top spot. Van Geffen’s time of 10:14.20 held off Carson Chambliss of Auburn by less than a second.

The Eagles also placed second in the 4×200-meter relay, losing out to Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa by just over a second, and placed second in the 4×800-meter relay as well. Justice Hammond was the only other point-scorer at the meet, as he came in eighth place in the shot put with a toss of 12.75 meters.

Helena placed 10th overall in the 1-5A boys meet with 19 points. Blake Vaughn was responsible for the majority of those points, as he placed third overall in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:07.36 and also placed fifth overall in the 1,600-meter run with a time of 4:46.71. Both times placed Vaughn comfortably ahead of the next-closest finisher. Curtis Woods was the only other individual who scored for the Huskies, as he finished fifth in the triple jump with a jump of 41-9.00 feet. The boys also placed fourth in the 4×800-meter relay as well.

Helena and Oak Mountain were also two of the girls’ teams that scored points in the meet, with the third girls team being Pelham. The Lady ranked highest among the girls from the county, coming is as the No. 8 team in the 1A-5A meet with 32 points. Claire Vaughn finished sixth in the 800-meter run and third in the 1,600-meter run to finish with nine points on the day. Kirsen Gardner placed second in the shot put with a throw of 9.9 meters, Hannah Montalbano placed fifth in the high jump with a leap of 4-10.0 feet and Quiana Moore placed eighth in the 60-meter dash to round out the individual scoring for the Lady Huskies.

The Lady Eagles placed 13th overall out of 21 teams in the 6A-7A field with 11 points. All of those points came from relays, as Oak Mountain placed second in the 4×400-meter relay and seventh in the 4x-200-meter relay.

Amelia Guthrie was the only Lady Panther to score points, as she scored 0.75 points with a ninth-place finish in the pole vault.