Class 5 Girls State Meet Recap

In a strikingly familiar scene, the Nansemond River girls track team claimed another state championship at the Class 5 indoor track meet, held in late February at the Virginia Beach Sports Center.

The Lady Warriors, in winning their seventh team title, held off strong challenges from Glen Allen and Albemarle teams, scoring 55.83 points, as opposed to the 46 for the runners-up. Maury, Prince George, and upstart Independence tied for third with 34.

For Glen Allen, it was their third indoor runner-up in the past four seasons.

Perhaps more surprising for the team from Suffolk, that counts multiple state title winners such as Brandee' Johnson, Syaira Richardson and Kori Carter among its alumnae, is that they had only a single gold medalist - although Jaliyah Person's state meet record time of 1:13.63 in the 500 meters was one of the strongest performances of the weekend on the Sports Center's banked blue oval.

Albemarle's Madelyn Gypson was one of the meet's outstanding performers, winning the 1600 (5:12.88), 3200 (10:57.33), and anchoring the Patriots' winning 3200-meter relay, which included Courtney Hughlett, Dylan Stasko, and Caroline Hughlett (9:36.39). In the 3200, Gypson nipped Glen Allen's Elly Velazquez by .08 seconds.

Brianna Selby, the junior sensation from Indian River, won the 55 in a meet record time of 6.84, and 300, and her time of 38.33 just missed Richardson's meet record of 38.26. For Selby, whose chronicles will be followed as she prepares to compete in two national meets, both times were personal bests.

Glen Allen's Emily Romano capped a 1-4-7 finish for Coach Matt Walton's team, winning the pole vault with a leap of 12 feet.

The other field event winners were split between Richmond-area and Loudoun County athletes.

Highland Springs' Pryncess Jackson won the long jump in 18-8.25, while Kaitlyn Cash of L.C. Bird captured the triple with her final effort of 38-5.5.

Hannah Riolo of Independence won the high jump in 5-6 and Ann Ibiezughe from Riverside tossed the shot 38 feet and four inches to place first.

Maury won the 800-meter relay (1:42.65), while Midlothian captured the 1600-meter relay in 4:02.61.

Lauren Thomas, also of Independence, topped the 55-meter hurdle field with a clocking of 8.11.

Prince George's Riley Humphries the 1000 meters in 2:58.06.