Lake Braddock girls rout, Denbigh boys suprise at CNU opener

NEWPORT NEWS, VA -- Christopher Newport University hosted its first of two high school indoor track meets this season at the Freeman Center and recently dedicated Vince Brown Track with the CNU Winter Frolic. There were some expected results as well as suprising finishes from the meet. The Lake Braddock girls are year in and year out one of the state\'s top track programs and did not disprove that fact to start off this season as they earned the team title at CNU with a team score of 97 points. Meanwhile, the boys\' team title was awarded to suprising squad in the Denbigh boys (77.50 pts) as they finished ahead of the state\'s premier track program over the years in Deep Creek (2nd, 63 pts). The ball got rolling for the Denbigh crew in the field events to give them a nice gap on the competition heading into the running events. Three Denbigh athletes had first place finishes in the field events including a state leading mark of 55-9.25 from Jaymes Brooks in the shot put as Brooks should be in contention for the Group AAA state title in March. Terrence Riggins in the triple jump (43-8) and Joshua Linder in the high jump (5-11) were also event winners. In the running events, Denbigh had one alone first place finish with their 4x200 meter relay squad posting a time of 1:36.87. Second place Deep Creek\'s sole individual event winner of the day came in the 500 meter dash with Keonta Coleman\'s 1:08.73 clocking. Coleman came back later in the day as a member of the winning 4x400 meter relay squad (3:32.43). Lafayette\'s Ryan Gaul has to be considered an early favorite for the state crown in the Group AA 1000 meter title as he opened with a state leading time of 2:34.13 to win the event at CNU. Kempsville\'s Trenton Hughes had an excellent day as he walked away with two victories in posting the top time in the 300 meter dash (36.42) as well as having the best mark in the long jump (21-5.50). Atlee\'s Justin Varner competed without his team as the rest of the Atlee squad raced at VMI this weekend, but he represented his team well with ten points as he won the pole vault competition in a successful clearance of 13-6. The Lake Braddock boys were the first 4x800 relay team to go under 8:30 in this early season as they won with a time of 8:29.79 in Friday night\'s race. Lake Braddock swept the 4x800 meter relays on Friday evening with the girls also taking first place honors and running a state best time of 9:46.31. Anna Noguchi gave them big points on the first day of events as well as she won the pole vault competition in a jumpoff with Heritage\'s Carolyn Lewis at 10 feet. 4x800 meter relay members Erin Klein and Michelle Presley for Lake Braddock came back on Saturday to finish 1-2 in the 1000 meter run as Klein posted a state leading time of 3:08.41 to finish first, while Presley trailed close in second at 3:10.02. The Lady Bruins also produced a 1-2 finish in the 3200 meter run with Christine Moore (11:43.54) and Anna Corrigan (11:46.24) taking the top two places. Melanie Akwule picked up another win for Lake Braddock as she clocked a time of 9.17 to win the 55 meter hurdles. Some state bests were produced out of the sprint events as well at CNU. Salem\'s Shamika Kentish gets to sit at the top of the rankings for now until Francena McCorory has her debut 55 meter dash race as Kentish won at CNU and posted a 7.16 clocking in the prelims. Kentish was a double event winner at the meet as she also won the long jump narrowly over Heritage\'s Carolyn Lewis (17-8.25) with a mark of 17-9. Meanwhile, Oscar Smith\'s Crystal Rascoe does not have to worry about an athlete the caliber of McCorory standing in her way to a state title in the 500 meter dash as she posted a swift early season time of 1:17.80 to possess the state\'s fastest time in the event. However, Rascoe should face stiff competition down the road from the likes of Kecoughtan\'s Lana McGawan (1:16.27 best) and Woodside\'s Dominique Jordan (1:17.20 best). Rascoe won the 400 meter state title at last spring\'s outdoor state track meet. Last year\'s indoor state champion and state leader in the shot put, Kathy Howard of Lee-Davis picked up right where she left off as she won the shot put competition with a state leading mark of 42-00.25. Teammate Rachel Butler had an outstanding meet with two victories at CNU with first place finishes in the 300 meter dash (42.13) and triple jump (37-7). Between the two athletes, they contributed 30 points to the team\'s total of 50 points as Lee-Davis finished third overall in the team standings. Only a few years into existence, the Deep Run girls had a solid team performance to take runner-up honors behind Lake Braddock with 61 points. Brianna Hudson got things going for Deep Run as she won the high jump competition at a height of 5-2. The 4x200 meter relay team also contributed ten points to the team\'s cause with a 1:50.40 clocking. Several runner-up performances from Deep Run individuals also boosted their team score. Erin Bragg, the first athlete to qualify for a state meet from the school two years ago in the 800 meter run outdoors, finished second to Patrick Henry\'s Amber Yung (5:29.47) in the 1600 meter run (5:32.83). In the 55 meter dash, Ashley Orr, a transfer from Thomas Dale, scored eight points for Deep Run finishing second to Salem\'s Kentish in a 7.54 clocking. Orr also contributed another eight points finishing second in the triple jump (36-3).