Several track teams shine at King of the Mountain event

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor 

VESTAVIA HILLS – With the spring sports season in full swing, the outdoor track and field season is off and running, and on Saturday, March 9, six Shelby County teams traveled to Vestavia Hills High School to take part in the King of the Mountain Invitational.

With Thompson, Oak Mountain, Helena, Chelsea, Briarwood and Westminster at Oak Mountain all competing in the event, nine different athletes between boys and girls events were able to claim a first-place finish, while several others picked up top 10 finishes.

One of the strongest performances was put together by the Thompson Warriors, who put together top 10 finishes in several different events, including three event winners.

Jace Jones was one of those to finish first, as he and Brandon DeMarcus Lee fared well in the distance runs. While the two finished second and fifth, respectively, in the 800-meter run, they were able to claim the top two spots in the 1,600-meter run thanks to times of 4:29.52 and 4:35.06, respectively.

Several other boys fared well, including Dominque Hall, who was able to claim three top 10 finishes on the day. Hall finished fourth in the pole vault finals, fifth in the 300-meter hurdles and sixth in the 400-meter dash.

Sam Reynolds, Tyreke Bivins, Julian Woods and Jared Hurst each put up two top 10 finishes apiece.

Reynolds finished second in the 100-meter dash and seventh in the 200-meter dash, while Bivins was just behind in the 100-meter dash finishing eighth and just ahead in the 200-meter dashing taking home fourth.

Woods finished 10th in the long jump and sixth in the triple jump, while Hurst claimed 10th in the triple jump and second in the high jump.

The final three top 10 boys’ finishers for Thompson were Blake Ellis, JB Mitchell and Gavin Gray. Ellis finished eighth in the pole vault finals, Mitchell finished eighth in the 400-meter dash and Gray finished fifth in the high jump.

The girls were highlighted by two winners, including London Wooley and Niya Oden, both of whom finished inside the top 10 three times.

Wooley finished first in the 300-meter hurdles, while adding finishes of seventh and sixth in the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash, respectively.

Oden won the long jump, while finishing third in the triple jump and eighth in the 100-meter dash.

Zoria Miller also added a third athlete to finish in the top 10 in three different events thanks to finishing 10th in the discus throw, eighth in the javelin and a high of second in the shot put.

Behind those three, Zakiria Holifield, Alayah King, Jill Douglas and Briana Rapley all finished inside the top 10 on two different occasions.

Holifield finished second in both the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash, while King finished seventh in the 200-meter dash and fourth in the triple jump.

Douglas was able to claim finishes of eighth in the 400-meter dash and ninth in the 200-meter dash, while Rapley finished second in the 100-meter hurdles and fifth in the 300-meter hurdles.

The final two top 10 finishers were Tyara Irvin and Autumn Alexander, who finished ninth in the long jump and 10th in the shot put, respectively.

For the Oak Mountain Eagles, Nicole Payne carried over her strong indoor performances and finished first in both the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash. She finished in 12.04 seconds in the 100 meter and 24.57 seconds in the 200 meter.

Harrison Dimick and Evie Bell also finished first and picked up multiple top 10 finishes.

Dimick won the discus finals, while also finishing second in the shot put, while Bell won the 1,600-meter run and finished seventh in the 800-meter run.

Glen Humphrey also had a strong day finishing fifth in the 100-meter dash and sixth in the 200-meter dash. Lexi Ray also had two top 10 finishes claiming 10th in both the 800-meter run and the 1,600-meter run.

Walker Cole, Antheny Carey and Jalen Thomas closed out the day for the Eagles with top 10 finishes as well. Cole finished fourth in the 3,200-meter run, Carey finished eighth in the high jump and Thomas finished 10th in the javelin.

Helena’s performance at the event was impressive as well thanks to first place finishes from Jonah Hyde and Allison Tanner.

Hyde was able to win the high jump, while Tanner won the high jump as well and finished inside the top 10 in two other events. She also claimed eighth in the long jump and second in the triple jump.

For the boys, Christian Hill and Garrett Hinds each finished in the top 10 twice. Hill finished eighth in the 110-meter hurdles and seventh in the 300-meter hurdles, while Hinds claimed ninth in the shot put and 10th in the discus.

Brady Barton and Damian Hines had strong events as well finishing fourth in the 1,600-meter run and seventh in the discus, respectively.

For the girls, Brooklynn Kirksey, Kirsen Gardner and Victoria Brown all had two top 10 finishes.

Kirksey finished second in the 400-meter dash and sixth in the 100-meter dash.

Gardner was able to finish third in both the discus and shot put, while Brown claimed eighth in the shot put and fourth in the discus.

Lexi Walton and Caroline Davis-Briggins finished things out for Helena by finishing sixth in the long jump and 10th in the 100-meter dash, respectively.

Chelsea was led by Teanna Cason with two top 10 finishes after claiming fifth in the 3,200-meter run and eighth in the 1,600-meter run.

For the boys, Desmond Battle and James Turnes finished seventh and 10th, respectively, in the shot put.

Briarwood’s Jay Kynerd was the only one to finish inside the top 10 twice for the Lions claiming seventh in the 100-meter dash and 10th in the 200-meter dash.

Jake Nunn and Chase Travis had strong showings for the boys as well, finishing third in the 400-meter dash and eighth in the javelin, respectively.

Adrienne Goolsby, Lauren Musachia, Ellie Sherrod and Gracie Wong highlighted the girls.

Goolsby finished seventh in the 3,200-meter race, Musachia finished fourth in the high jump, Sherrod finished seventh in the javelin and Wong finished 10th in the triple jump.

Westminster’s biggest highlight was Hannah York thanks to two top 10 finishes. She claimed ninth in the 100-mter hurdles and eighth in the 300-meter hurdles.

The high jump was by far the Knights’ most successful event with Samantha Schrock finishing fifth, Ellie Sachs finishing sixth and Molly Reynolds claiming ninth.

Maggie McCallum was the final girl to finish inside the top 10 for the Knights thanks to her finish of 10th in the javelin.

For the boys, Andrew Purcell finished 10th in the 800-meter run and Mitchell Drennen ninth in the long jump.