Led by multiple winners Marcus Krah, Desmond Jackson and Taleya Harris, Hillside won both the PAC-6 conference’s boys and girls championships in track and field Wednesday.
Competing in the two-day meet at their own Russell Blunt Memorial Stadium, the Hornet girls amassed 159 points to win the PAC-6 championship for a second straight year. Riverside was second with 116 points, followed by East Chapel Hill (112), Jordan (86), Northern Durham (47) and Roxboro Person (17).
Hillside won the boys title with 160 points to the 126 for East Chapel Hill and 116 for last year’s champion, Jordan. Northern finished with 64, Riverside 52 and Person 47.
Spurred on by a need to hit qualifying marks for next week’s NCHSAA regionals, Hillside’s Marcus Krah won three events: the long jump (21 feet, 3.5 inches) and triple jump (44 feet, 9 inches) Tuesday in the meet’s opening day, and the 110 hurdles Wednesday with a time of 14.61 seconds, edging past Hornet teammate McKinley Brown (14.71).
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After straining a hamstring in the Indoor Nationals last winter, Krah, the defending 4A state champion in the 110 hurdles, entered that event and the triple jump for the first time this spring in the PAC-6 meet.
“I really needed this meet. I had to qualify,” Krah said. “I came out hoping to do a little better, but it’s been a good couple of days for me.”
Unfazed by finishing second to Krah in the 110 hurdles, Brown ran away with the boys 300 hurdles title with the best N.C. high school time this year (38.36), well ahead of Jordan’s Matthew Phillips (42.23).
“I stuttered a little bit a the first hurdle and the last hurdle,” Brown said. “I know I can do better that the regionals.”
Hillside’s Jackson was the biggest individual winner, competing alone and winning in the PAC-6 meet’s ambulatory events: the 100-, 200- and 300-meters and the long jump.
Harris was a triple-winner for Hillside’s girls team: in the long jump (16 feet, 9.5 inches), the 100 hurdles (15.67) and the 300 hurdles (46.80).
Atlanta Woodall of Riverside, a two-time winner in last year’s PAC-6 meet, won three events this time. Woodall broke her own meet record in winning the girls 200 meters (22.55) and just missed another new mark in winning the 100 meters in 12.43, not too far off her winning time last year of 12.09. She added a victory this year in the triple jump (36 feet, 3 inches.)
Jza-Quashia Mookie Davis repeated as the girls winner in shot put (43 feet, 11 inches) and discus (100 feet, 9 inches).
Lily Price paced the East Chapel Hill females with her wins in the 800 meters (2:29.84) and 1600 meters (5:20.84).
“I didn’t get a PR (personal record), but I feel like I’m peaking right now,” Price said. “Everything felt pretty easy, which is a good omen for the regionals and states.”
Iyin Battle of East Chapel Hill, committed to competing next year for Duke, repeated as double champion in the boys’ shot put (48 feet, 9 inches) and discus (181 feet, 1 inch). His mark in the discus, the best in the state this year, was within eyesight of the NCHSAA record of 185-1.
Helped by a Hillside mistake, East Chapel Hill picked up a first place in the girls 4x100 relay. The Wildcats won another three relays, including a boys and girls sweep in the 4x800 and a win over Hillside in the climatic boys 4x400.
Hillside swept the boys and girls 4x200 and won the girls 4x400. Hillside’s girls 4x100 relay, undefeated up to Wednesday, was disqualified for a false start.
Jordan was the only other school to win a relay – the boys 4x100.
Jordan picked up individual wins by Drew Noah in the 400 meters (50.15), Quinton Meyer in the 3200 meters (10:03.59), and Caleb Wright in the pole vault (10-0).
Person’s best performance came in the boys’ 100 meters, where Dontavian Smith (11.23) and Tayshaun Outrlaw (11.39) finished one-two.
Other male winners included: Hillside’s Tremelle Parker in the high jump (6-2) and Najee Reams in the 200 meters (22.38); and East Chapel Hill’s Connor MacDonald in the 800 meters (1:57.93) and James Gildard in the 1600 meters (4:41.13).
Other female winners included: Katie Maitland of East Chapel Hill, pole vault (7-6); Jordyn Brown of Jordan, high jump (5-7); Riverside’s Leland MacDonald, 3200 meters (12:23.52); Hillside ninth-grader Jessica Wright, 400 meters (58.91).