Northern Region Champs (Day 1): Lake Braddock 9:11 4x800, Fortes 180ft in Discus! May 21, 2009

The Lake Braddock and West Potomac girls had a great battle in the 4x800 meter relay on Thursday night for day one of the Northern Region Championships, which resulted in both teams running well under the old meet record of 9:17.56 by a 2005 squad from Lake Braddock. The Lake Braddock girls defeated their Patriot District rivals in a state leading and US #5 time of 9:11.52. West Potomac settled for second in the state's second fastest time of the 2009 outdoor season in 9:15.88 to improve by 12 seconds from their 9:27 Southern Track Classic win two years ago. (Lake Braddock anchor Liana Epstein pictured right by Ted Plunkett)   It was a very successful first day for the Lake Braddock girls as they are the favored squad to win the Northern Region team title and lead the team scoring after day one with 28 1/2 points. Lake Braddock's Becca Sinickho looked strong in the preliminary rounds of her events as the sophomore posted the fastest qualifying time in the 200 (25.22) and second fastest in the 400 (57.58) behind indoor 500 meter state champ Genamarie McCant of James Robinson (56.33). Sinichko, who has already state qualified in the 300 meter hurdles, garnered a surprising runner-up finish in the long jump with a mark of 17'7".   Sinichko was a runner-up to Tynita Butts of T.C. Williams, who is wrapping up her final Northern Region championships and will go down as one of the greatest athletes ever from the region as she claimed two titles on Thursday in the long jump (19'1.50") and high jump (5'7"). Butts will be anxious to return to Todd Stadium next week and erase the demons of last year's state outdoor meet when she fouled out of the long jump despite being the heavy favorite.   The top boys' performance from day one belonged to South Lakes thrower Quintin Fortes (pictured above by Ted Plunkett) who sent a clear message to the rest of the discus throwers in the state heading into the state meet with his monster effort of 180'10" at Lake Braddock High School. Fortes was just over 2 feet away from breaking one of the Northern Region's oldest meet records as the mark of 183'0" by Phil Vincenses has stood for over 30 years dating back to 1976.   The throw by Fortes has also jumpstarted his South Lakes team, which will contend for the outdoor regional title after taking the indoor title in February. The Seahawks will look to Vincent Brown to score most of the points and the senior has plenty of momentum to score plenty of points on day two after winning the long jump with a season best leap of 22'10.75" and also running the fastest times in the qualifying rounds for the 100 meter dash (10.99), 200 meter dash (22.13), and 110 meter hurdles (14.41). Three wins on Saturday would be huge for Brown and South Lakes' chances of repeating their glory from the indoor regional championships. Read more from day one...   Northern Region Championships - Day 1 Results Northern Region Championships Photo Gallery by Ted Plunkett - 474 photos from Day 1