Relays was the theme for this weekend with many of the big meets heavy in the relays for their events as well as their names with the Carolyn Legard Relays in Chantilly, Conn-Madden Relays in Newport News, Manchester Relays in Chesterfield, The Potomac Relays in McLean, and the Roanoke River Relays in Vinton. Meanwhile, the VA Runner Invitational was contested at Colonial Forge High School in Stafford with the more traditional championship meet format of events. Complete results are up from all major invites in-state that we know of. Photo galleries are now posted by John Herzog at Manchester (1015 photos) and Ted Plunkett at Carolyn Legard (777 photos) with galleries by Brandon Miles at VA Runner and David Fleenor at Manchester to come (as well as video from VA Runner). Close to getting all performances from this past weekend entered into the database for the site's rankings and athlete profiles.
Colonial Forge senior Blake Arnold now finds himself as the state leader in three distance events for 800, 1600, and 3200 meters after picking up two state bests times this past Saturday at his team's home meet at the VA Runner Invitational. Arnold outkicked Mountain View sophomore Thomas Porter for a 4:24.14 1600 meter win, while leading wire to wire with a 1:57.30 victory in the 800 meter run. (Photo by Brandon Miles)
VA Runner Invitational Highlights
Blake Arnold of Colonial Forge picked up two wins on his home track at Colonial Forge High School for the second annual VA Runner Invitaitonal. After this weekend, the Colonial Forge senior now has the state's fastest times in three distance events. Arnold won both the 1600 and 800 meter races this past weekend with a victory over Northwest Region rival Thomas Porter of Mountain View to gap him in the final 400 meters for a 4:24.14 first place finish. Porter finished second in 4:30.44. In the 800 meter run, Arnold returned and instead of sitting on the leaders as he did with Porter in the 1600 meter run, shot to the lead from the start and took it wire to wire in 1:57.30 second win of the meet. Both times are early season state bests to go along with his 9:44 3200 from last Saturday's I-95 Brian Watkins Invite.
North Stafford's Jerald Fayorsey and Forest Park's Alex Feldman battled it out twice in the sprints with an even outcome in first place finishes for both. Fayorsey took the 200 meter dash in 22.99 with Feldman in second at 23.21, while Feldman had won the 400 meter dash earlier in a close finish with only 12 hundredths of a second separating Feldman (49.68) and Fayorsey (49.80) as both went under 50 seconds.
Fayorsey spoiled a 1-2 finish by Mountain View in both the long jump and triple jump with a mark of 43'4" in the triple jump to snag second place honors. Mountain View had the top two jumpers in the long jump with Cedric Hudson (22'3.75") and Olu Olamigoke (22'0.50") both over 22 feet, while Olamigoke was the triple jump winner in 44'7.75" and teammate DJ Haskins finishing third after Fayorsey at 42'.6.50".
Riverbend's Jeremy Snyder, a Group AA state champion in the high jump last year as a junior during indoor track, had an impressive meet at the VA Runner Invite in his specialty by matching his best height with a 6'8" clearance to break his own meet record of 6'7" from last year.
Potomac Senior closed out the meet with one of the faster times so far put in the 4x400 meter relay in the state as they won decisively by five seconds in 3:23.65.
April Sinkler of Brooke Point dominated the girls' side of the meet with as she swept the jumping events with meet record breaking performances in each as she cleared 5'8" in a deep high jump competition, which saw 12 girls clear over 5 feet. Sinkler also won the long jump by a foot with a mark of 18'1" over the Deep Run pair of Ashley Orr (2nd, 17'1") and Briana Hudson (3rd, 17'0"). The Clemson bound Sinkler also broke Orr's meet record in the triple jump by well over a foot in a top performance of 37'9.50".
James Robinson's Echard sisters swept the throwing events with a best throw of 36'5" for Jessie Echard in the shot put and a winning mark of 107'11" for Asia Echard in the discus throw.
Both Brooke Point's Becky Sampson and Potomac's Yvonne Amegashie won two races each on the track. Sampson was the first to cross the line in both hurdle races with a 15.61 clocking in the 100 meter hurdles and 47.40 clocking in the 300 meter hurdles to win for the second year in both at the VA Runner Invite as well as break break her own meet records.
Meanwhile, Amegashie rolled out the state's fastest time for 400 meters in a 57.67 victory to break the old meet record by 2 1/2 seconds as well as double back in the 200 meter dash to hold off a challenge from one of Region II's best in Jennifer Weatherly (2nd, 25.97) for a 25.82 win.
Weatherly, a regional champion in both the 100 and 200 meter dash last spring in Region II, won the 100 meter dash earlier in 12.74 narrowly over Deep Run's Joanna Hassell in a close second at 12.75.
Another Region II athlete in Brentsville senior Becky Stewart also had a meet to be boastful about as she split a 2:21 for Brentsville's victorious 4x800 meter relay in 9:47.94 to start off the meet and two hours later won a close 1600 meter battle in 5:08.54 with Brooke Point's Brittany Copeland (5:08.84) as only three tenths of a second separating the two at the line.
Fourth place finisher in the 1600 meter run, Kaylan Comer of Colonial Forge, had a solid double at her home meet as she posted a time of 5:13.44 in a competitive 1600 meter run and followed it up with a 12 second victory in the 3200 meter run in 11:21.96.
Third place finisher in the 3200 meter run, Liz Barclay of Albemarle (11:37.39), competed in one of her rare eight lap race appearances after winning the 800 meter run earlier in a great finish as she was able to scoot past the Brooke Point pair of Brittany Wilhlem (2nd, 2:23.23) and Brittany Copeland (2:23.32) in a 2:21.61 victory.
Wilhelm had a strong meet with her second place showing in the 800 meter run and anchored home a 4:06 first place showing for Brooke Point in the 4x400 meter relay to conclude the day.
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- Manchester Relays: Herzog Gallery
- Manchester Relays: Fleenor Gallery
- Carolyn Legard Relays: Plunkett Gallery
- VA Runner Invitational: Miles Gallery
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