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BA boys take the region

Girls take runner up in GISA Region 2-AA meet

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BA boys take the region

Bulloch Academy's Ethan Lovett and Rachel Gilbert pose with a combined 10 first-place plaques after they both won individual high point at the championship meet.

    One region team championship trophy, one region runner-up trophy, two high-point award winners, 18 individual region champions and 58 entries into next week’s state meet — not a bad day for Bulloch Academy Thursday at the GISA Region 2-AA track and field championships.
    “It was a fantastic day,” said BA head boys’ and girls’ track coach Clint Morgan. “We had so many personal bests. They all performed well. It’s what hard work and great senior leadership will do for you. I feel like we could be peaking at the right time.”
    The Gator guys walked away with the region title, scoring a phenomenal 223 points. The Bulloch ladies took second in the four-team meet with 113. Trinity won the girls’ title, nipping the Lady Gators by 14 points. The Lady Crusaders scored 215 points while Bulloch’s girls notched 201.
    The BA boys collectively earned 11 individual region titles and won their first team region championship since 2006. The girls’ team notched seven region titles.
Senior Ethan Lovett won three events (pole vault, 110-meter hurdles and 300m hurdles) and ran legs on the winning 4x100 and 4x400m relay teams. He accumulated a perfect 35 points to win the boys’ high-point award.
    “Thirty-five points is the maximum,” said Morgan. “You can’t ask for anything else. Ethan is a superb athlete. He is probably the best all-around athlete I have ever coached.”
    Freshman Rachel Gilbert also won three events (long jump, 400m dash, 200m dash) and ran legs on the second-place 4x400m relay team and the third-place 4x100m relay team. She tallied 33.5 points to win the girls’ high-point trophy award. The honor is Gilbert’s second of her young varsity career. At the 2007 region meet, she scored 34.5 points for the award.
    “How many people can say that they have won two high-point awards in their career?” said Morgan. “She’s just a ninth grader. Like Ethan, Rachel is just a natural athlete. They both work so hard. I don’t remember a time when I’ve had both boys’ and girls’ high-point award winners.”
    Also winning individual region titles for the BA girls were sophomore Kelcie Jacobs, who won both the 1600m run and the 800m run, freshman Sally Marie Futch, who set the school record in the discus with a throw of 111-9, and senior Whitney Hinson in the high jump.
    Region champions for the Gator guys were seniors Darion Carter (100m dash and 200m dash), Jordan Walker (triple jump, 4x100m relay, 4x400m relay), juniors Chan Newton (high jump, 4x100m relay) and Troy Poulin (400m dash, 4x100m relay, 4x400m relay), sophomore Paul Son (discus) and Ellis Lane (4x400m relay).
    But, more importantly, Bulloch Academy will have 58 entries into GISA Class AA track and field championships next week at Hugh Mills Stadium in Albany. Competitors who finished in the top four spots of each event in the region meet automatically qualified for the April 24-27 state meet.
    Both squads will have 29 out of a possible 32 entries into the state championships as they both will make strong runs at their respective state titles. Last Spring, the Gators were state runners-up while the Lady Gators were fourth.
    “Any coach will tell you that the key to winning a state championship in track and field is depth,” said Morgan. “We definitely have that in both teams. We have the capability of several first-place finishes at state.”
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