COLUMBIA — Saturday at Harry Parone Stadium was a golden one for four T&D Region track and field athletes.
Both Edisto’s Brice Johnson and Woodland’s Christopher Gaddist were successful in defending their respective individual Class 2-A boys’ titles at the S.C. Track and Field Championships. The University of North Carolina-bound Johnson repeated as high jump champion with a leap of 6’08, while Gaddist claimed the 400 meter hurdles once again with a time of 53.36 seconds.
“My thoughts (going into the competition) was I wanted to win again,” said Johnson, who hinted at possibly taking up track with the Tar Heels.
“We have good coaches and (we do) a lot of hard work,” Gaddist said. “(Hurdling’s) in my family. My sister did it and so did my dad and ma.”
Earlier in the day, Lake Marion junior Mike Williams earned his first state title by winning the high jump. The three-sport Gator and reigning T&D Region Football Player of the Year at wide receiver won a tiebreaker with Seneca’s Dorian Raines and Belton-Honea Path’s Chris Smith to win a gold medal with a jump of six feet, two inches.
This capped a week of good news for Williams which included nomination for the U.S. Army All-America Game next year in San Antonio, Texas.
“My coach was telling me I had a chance to win state and I had never won state in any sport,” he said. “I always wanted to win state in something, so I decided to come to all the practices and all the meets to compete.”
On the girls’ side, the day belonged locally to senior Kolisha Coleman. Vowing to end her Lady Eagle career with a high finish, Coleman came away a two-time champion in sweeping the Class A 100 (12.84 seconds) and 200 meters (26.28 seconds).
“Hard work, dedication, ice bags,” said Coleman, whose college choices have narrowed down to USC-Upstate and Charleston Southern. “You have to really want to work. You have to want to put in the practice and you have to put in your mind that you’re going to win. Once you do that, it comes easy.”
Other T&D Region medalists included:
Discus Throw — David DeLeon (Bamberg-Ehrhardt) 146’07 — 3rd place
Shotput — Britt Shane (Woodland) 57’04.50 — 2nd place
Long Jump — Rameak Smith (Woodland) 22’07.50 — 3rd place
110 meter hurdles — Christopher Gaddist (Woodland) 15.24 seconds — 2nd place
100 meter hurdles — Kimberly Casteal (Hunter-Kinard-Tyler) 15.98 seconds — 2nd place
Long Jump — Shamone Harley (Blackville-Hilda) 17’02.50 — 2nd place
Shotput – Courtney Thomas (Edisto) 35’03.25 — 3rd place
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