As the indoor track season winds down, nine area athletes and two relay teams boast the top marks in the state this season. The N.C. High School Athletic Association championships are Feb. 10 and 11 at the JDL Fast Track in Winston-Salem.
Panther Creek’s J. Johnson is the only player to lead in two events – the 55-meter dash (6.36 seconds) and long jump (22 feet, 4 1/2 inches).
Other leaders include:
Boys’ running events: Green Hope’s Ian Delgado in the 1,000-meter run (2:34.26), Cleveland’s Gable Dershem in the mile (4:31.97) and Leesville Road’s Nathan Gamble is tops in the two-mile (9:44.89).
Boys’ field events: Harnett Central’s Ryan Smith in the triple jump (46 feet, 1 3/4 inches); Chapel Hill’s Jacob Hickerson in the pole vault (14 feet)
Girls’ running events: Southeast Raleigh leads in the 4-by-200 and 4-by-400 relays, and Kyna Robinson also leads in the 500 (1:15.16).
Girls’ field events: Northwood’s Tessa Sheets in the pole vault (12 feet) and Hillside’s Kayla Beasley in the shot put (41 feet, 9 1/2 inches).
Gymanstics championships: The N.C. gymnastics championships are scheduled for Friday evening and Saturday afternoon at the Raleigh School of Gymnastics.
Most of the teams are from the eastern half of the state as those west of Durham typically don’t field varsity gymnastics teams. The sport is not under the NCHSAA umbrella, but many schools – including all in Wake County – have incorporated it as a varsity sport with a paid coach and regular-season schedule.
Panther Creek is the reigning large-teams championship and Middle Creek won the small-teams title.
Last week, Panther Creek (Southwest Wake 4A), West Johnston (Greater Neuse River 4A) and Leesville Road (Cap-8 4A) won conference championships.
Clayton lineman named to national team: Clayton offensive lineman Noah Ferguson has been named to the U.S. Under-18 National Team and will compete against Canada in the first North American Championship at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex.
Ferguson is one of 48 high school athletes chosen to represent Team USA in the international competition.
The 2017 North American Championship is a collaboration of the sport’s national governing bodies in each country – USA Football and Football Canada. Players will arrive in Orlando, Fla., on Monday and will kick games off on Saturday.
JUSA presents awards: The Johnston United Soccer Association has named its 2016 Johnston County High School Mr. Soccer and its 2016 Boys High School All-County Team. The Mr. Soccer Award went to Dillon Parker of Corinth Holders.
Members of the All County Team are listed below by position:
Defenders – Tyler Duncan, Clayton; Bailey King, Cleveland; and Ricardo Padilla-Sanchez and Ian Walston, both of North Johnston.
Forwards – Hunter Lee, Cleveland; and Austin Stephens, Luis Molina and Levi Martin, all of West Johnston.
Midfielders – Caleb Rodgers, Clayton; Joseph Martinez, Cleveland; and Dillon Parker and Jacob Meierer, Corinth Holders.
Goalkeeper – Jacob Maloney, West Johnston.
Honorable mention went to Reis Yu of Cleveland, Caleb Metz of DASH homeschool, Adolfo Rosales of North Johnston, Brayden Kauppi of South Johnston and Gavin Brundidge and Carlos Molina of West Johnston.