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Statesboro rolls in home track meet

    Statesboro’s track and field squads continued a stellar start to the 2014 season as both the boys and girls claimed first place finishes in Wednesday’s meet at Womack Field.
    The Lady Blue Devils scored an impressive 202 points while their teammates on the boys’ side recorded a final tally of 182 points. South Effingham finished second in both the boys and girls competitions. The boys’ meet fielded six teams while the girls saw seven schools come to compete.
    Saint Vincent’s out of Savannah competed in the girls’ meet while Appling County, Portal, Jenkins County, Islands, and South Effingham sent both boys and girls teams.
    “This was another great night for us,” SHS coach Jake Collins said. “We had some people coming back off of injury who performed very well and help us get the win. We’re also happy that we did it against some solid competition. Now, the key is to keep on improving from here.”
    The boys squad was particularly dominant, claiming first place finishes in 13 of the 16 events.
    Zaquavian Smith won the high jump as well as the 200 and 400 meter races. Ricky Lee took both the shot put and the discus throws while Nash Davis claimed the pole vault and mile run and Andreas Ward won both hurdling events.
    Other winners for the boys included Xavier Fennell (800 meters), Zach Grant (triple jump), Jaier Williams (100 meters), as well as the 4x100 and 4x400 relay squads.
    “The relays were big for us,” Collins said. “The 4x400 relay is a tradition here at Statesboro. We take a lot of pride in our relay races and we were very excited to have our first and second squads seep in both the boys and girls competitions.”
    The success was just as prevalent for the Lady Devils.
    Lucia Lyons recorded first place throws in the shot put and discus while the field event dominance continued with Alexis Hunter wining the triple jump and Simone Kirkland topping all competitors in the pole vault.
    On the track, Jaslyn Joseph took both hurdling races, Genevieve Okafor won the 800 meters, and the Devils swept the relay races.
    “A big part of our strength is our depth,” Collins said. “We don’t just want to field people in every event. We expect to compete to win in every event. Matt Green at William James Middle School and Cassius Osborn at Langston Chapel play a big role in building up our athletes and allowing us to have a full roster that can compete in every aspect of meets.”
    Statesboro hosts another home meet next Wednesday.
    Following that, the Devils will travel to Hinesville for the Bradwell Relays before returning to Womack Field on March 29 for the 46th annual Statesboro Relays.

    Mike Anthony may be reached at (912) 489-9404.