Special to The Sun
The Lady Bulldogs of Edmond Memorial scored in 13 of 17 events to romp to the Class 6A girls championship in impressive fashion at the OSSAA State Track and Field Championships at Yukon Saturday.
Crosstown rival Edmond Santa Fe was a distant second in the girls division while the Memorial boys also finished second to Broken Arrow, 125-110, falling short on the concluding 1600 relay.
Memorial's ladies won three relay titles and got a gold medal from sophomore Jenny Roy, who had a career best of 5-6 to win the high jump. The Lady ‘Dogs piled up 134 points while Santa Fe finished with 73 to claim the runner-up trophy.
The Memorial boys held a slim 106-105 advantage going into the final event on the program, the 1600 meter relay and the Bulldogs had qualified second behind Enid with a time of 3:23.27 while Broken Arrow fell into the No. 4 slot with a qualifying time of 3:24.87.
But the championship race was a different story as the Broken Arrow squad lowered its time to 3:24.17 for the gold and 20 points, and Yukon, Jenks and Enid all finished ahead of Memorial, which picked up just four points for a 3:25.82 finish. That gave Broken arrow 125 and the runner-up Bulldogs 110.
The Lady Bulldogs scored an unbelievable 72 points with three winning relays and a third place in the 3200 relay.
The 400 meter quartet got the ball rolling with a 48.32 clocking with Santa Fe taking third behind Norman. Then the foursome of Ricky Sheef, Kelsey Shanks, Rhandi Jackson and Shaquan Burris highlighted an Edlam shuffle in the 800 meter race as they posted a 1:42.38 while Santa Fe was second and Edmond North was third.
For good measure, Sheef, Clara O'Connor, Jackson and Burris ran a 4:00.67 for gold in the concluding 1600 meter relay after qualifying fourth behind Santa Fe, Jenks and Lawton Eisenhower. Jenks would finish second in the finals, followed by Eisenhower and Santa Fe.
Burris, who joined with Cherish Abinah to go 2-3 in the 100, credited the victory to the emotional bond between members of the squad.
“We have had a lot of injuries and some other things go wrong, but when it counted, we stuck together and drew strength from each other. Coach (Tim Grantham) asked us on the bus who was going to step up on Saturday. We all volunteered and now we have championship trophy to prove it,” she said.
Jade Patton of Edmond North was the winner of the 100 meters followed by Burris and Abinah. Patton's teammate, Quinn Patterson and sister Jordan also made the awards stand to give Edmond athletes five of the six medals. Jade Patton and Patterson were 2-3 in the 200 for North.
In the boys 100, Robert Charlton of Memorial was third in a time of 10.83.
Tyler Wisby of Santa Fe ran a 57.78 to claim the silver in the girls 400 while O'Connor was sixth. In the boys 400, Grey Howard of Edmond Memorial was fourth in 50.07. Emily Hart of Santa Fe was third in the 100 meter hurdles for girls while Demetrius Jones of Santa Fe and the Memorial duo of Jesse Cossey and Donovan Nunley went 2-3 and North's Mark Sharpton was fifth.
In the closest race of the day, Midwest City basketballer Caleb Corprew nipped Memorial’s Micah Fontaine, 38.791 to 38.799 in the 300 hurdles after the race was originally signaled a tie.
The boys 800 was all Memorial as Howard took the gold medal with a 1:56.80 closely followed by Ryan Nielson at 1:56.97 and Alex Shook at 1:57.16 for 24 valuable team points. O'Connor was second in the girls 800 with a time of 2:20.03. Josiah Hunter of Edmond Santa Fe was the winner of the high jump, clearing 6-8 while Roy gave Memorial 10 points with her victory in the high jump. In the pole vault, the Memorial trio of Lauren Pitts, Adrienne Viviani and Makenzi Cloyd added 14 points as Pitts was second, clearing 10-6, Viviani tied for second at 10-0 and Cloyd was fifth at 9-6.
Santa Fe’s Hunter finished third with a leap of 22-7 in the long jump and Mallory Simpson of Memorial was fifth in the long jump.
David Smith of Memorial garnered a silver medal with a throw of 162-10 in the discus and teammate Sierra Sheen picked up a third-place medal in the girls discus with a throw of 121-11. In the girls shot put, Alaina and Alexis Cooper of Santa Fe finished 4-5. Smith also won a fourth place medal in the shot put, throwing 52-10.
Yukon will also be the site for Tuesday's Oklahoma Track Coaches Association Meet of Champions beginning at 6 p.m. The first and second place finishers in each event from Classes A, 2A, 3A, 4A, 5A and 6A plus the next four best performances regardless of class have been invited to participate.
OTCA President Dennis Seifreid of Weatherford reported Sunday that more than 350 athletes have signed up with more expected by Tuesday. Future plans include Meet of Champions winners forming a team to compete against Texas all-stars.