The Watauga High boy's and girl's track teams swept the Northwestern 3A/4A Conference championships Thursday at Lenior-Rhyne University in Hickory, N.C. The WHS girls won five events and
bested the field with 174 points; the boys, led by Zach Styron, won three events and captured the title with 155.50 points.
Styron was a dual winner on Thursday as he captured both the boy's 110-meter hurdles (16.57 seconds) and the boy's 300-meter hurdles (42.94). The Pioneers also won the boy's 4x800 relay (8:11.50). WHS solidified the title by posting 34 top ten finishes.
Matt Hall turned in a second-place finish in the high jump (5-feet, 06-inches), Josh Anderson finished second in the 1,600 (4:37.39). He finishsed just six-tenths of a second behind the winner, Dylan Mathewson of South Caldwell (4:37.33).
Bryan Brackney turned in a strong effort and finished second in the 400 (50.66), and Ryan Hellenbrand finishsed second in the 800 (2:02.16). Hibriten finished a distant second with 103 points; St. Stephens finished third with 80 points.
The WHS girls won five events and posted 32 top-ten finishers. The Pioneers dominated the 1,600-meter run by capturing the top three spots in the race. Darby Middlebrook, who has slowly worked her way back into the line up following a leg injury last fall, won the event in 5:25.16. Doria Kosmala finished second in 5:27.22, Madison Harman finished third in 5:32.82.
Kosmala won the 800 (2:24.66), Kathleen Mansure won the 3,200 (12:34.52), Taylor Drummonds won the pole vault (9-6), and WHS won the 4x800 relay (10:34.80).
Drummonds also posted a pair of second-place finishes in the 100-meter hurdles (15.65) and the 300 hurdles (49.39). Alison Seramur had a second-place finish in the pole vault (9-0), Middlebrook finished second in the 800 (2:25.56), and Lynde Wangler finished second in the 3,200 (12:42.31).
Alexander Central finished a distant second with 131 points; Fred T. Foard finished third with 68 points. The Pioneers will host the High Country Track & Field Classic next Saturday, May 4; the Class 4A Western Regional will be held at A.C. Reynolds High in Asheville, N.C., on Saturday, May 11.
MIDDLE SCHOOL TRACK RESULTS
The Watauga County Middle School boy's and girl's track teams competed on Monday. The teams combined won 13 events and they posted 41 top-five finishers. The girl's won eight events.
Brielle McKinney won two events, the 800-(3:06.70) and the 1,600-meter run (6:37.50). Alden McClure won the 100-meter dash (13.99), Hailey McDaniel won the 200 (31.12), Norma Martinez won the high jump (3-feet, 10-inches), Emma Kate Sovensky won the 400 (1:10.10) and Watauga captured the 4x100 (2:15.21) and the 4x200 (1:00.50) relay events.
The girls won the meet with 92 points; Ashe County finished second with 67 points.
The boys won five events. Grant Pilkington won the 1,600 (5:30.6), Emory Wallace won the 100 (13.34), Andrew Nenow won the 200 (28.16), and Watauga captured both the 4x100 (55.97) and the 4x200 (1:57.91) relays.
Elkin won the meet with 62 points; Watauga finished five points back with 57.
MIDDLE SCHOOL GOLF
The Watauga Middle School boy's golf team finished fourth with a team score of 199 on Thursday at the Brushy Mountain Golf Course in Taylorsville, N.C. Caldwell County won its third meet in a row by besting the field with at team score of 179. Burke County finished second with a 183, four shots off the lead.
Noah Haney of Caldwell County was the leading medalist with a 37; Rory McNeil led Watauga with a 42, five shots off the lead. Alan Graham had a 48 and Jordan Austin fired a 51. Watauga travels to Cedar Rock Country Club in Lenior, N.C., next Tuesday, April 30.
Medalist: Noah Haney, Caldwell 37
Rory McNeil 42
Alan Graham 48
Jordan Austin 51
Benjamin Critcher 58
Joseph Critcher 62
WHS BOY'S LACROSSE CLINCHES PLAYOFF SPOT
The Watauga High boy's lacrosse team ended four-years of frustration Thursday night by nailing down its first playoff berth in school history. The Pioneers (4-5; 4-0 in District 9) nailed down the district championship and their post-season spot by knocking off Hickory 9-7 on the road.
Nick Williams led the way with four goals. He now has 49 goals this season and 86 in his career.
Dominick Hamilton had three goals. The Pioneers take on Patton at home tonight on Senior Night at Leigh Wallace Memorial Field. The Pioneers close out the regular season at Freedom Tuesday, April 30.
WHS GIRL'S FALL SHORT AT HOUGH
The Watauga High girl's lacrosse team spotted Cornelius-Hough a 15-7 halftime lead, and despite a furious second-half comeback, lost 19-13 in a District 7 game. The Pioneers (3-6) outscored the Huskies 6-4 in the second half.
Taelor Critcher led WHS with five goals; Addy Kincaid chipped in with three goals; sophomore Katie Marks had two goals and an assist. Ava Moody had two assists. Goaltender Keirsten Henson made 15 saves.
"This was better than the last time we played them," said WHS coach Holly Quick. "I was pleased with our play in the second half. We got down very early, but the girls played hard to get back in it."
WHS will wrap up the season against Lake Norman on Saturday. WHS will also be celebrating Senior Day at Leigh Wallace Memorial Field, beginning at 11 a.m. Critcher, Kincaid, Moody, Henson,and Kali Scott will be among the seniors honored before the match.