River Region has pair of state field champs

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Morris, Carter take top honors in events


Sports Editor

BATON ROUGE-Competing for and winning state championships is almost becoming as regular of an occurrence at West St. John as breathing.

This past weekend on the campus of Louisiana State University at the LHSAA State Farm Track and Field Championships, East St. John decided to get in on the fun to.

The highest finishing team in the area with a fourth place finish overall; the West St. John Rams concluded the state meet with 34 points.

Rams star Darrell Morris took home the state championship in the discus for West St. John with an unbelievable throw of 153-02. He also had a solid showing in the boy’s shot put, finishing in fourth place with a throw of 48-06.25.

“It was a great throw for Darrell and we are all really happy for him,” West St. John Head Coach Martin Sylvain said. “Darrell has committed himself all year and he wanted to win the state title in the discuss as well as the shot put. He has worked really hard and he was blessed to have an assistant coach who had taken part in the same event at Southern University successfully for four years.

“We were not surprised with him winning. We expected to Darrell to win that event.”

Joining Morris in helping to rack up points for the Rams was speedster Ray Bartholomew. Bartholomew was the state runner-up in the 100 meter dash with a time of 10.90, only a miniscule .53 away from taking home the individual title in the 100 meter event.

“Ray was balanced in every event he was in for us,” Sylvain said. “He gave it his all and that is all anyone can ask. We knew that going into the event that he and Trindon Holiday would be the top two sprinters in the 100 meter dash. Everyone knew about Trindon Holiday without a doubt, but Ray finished a strong second against Holiday in the regionals and in the state meet. Ray had a great year and really helped our squad.”

The main sprinter for the Rams in the state meet, Bartholomew also took home third-place honors n the 200 meter dash with a time of 22.50 and was part of the 4×200 meter relay squad that finished in third place.

Accompanied by Therial Reese, Donovan Dorsey and Jaron Howard, Bartholomew and the rest of the Rams finished with an impressive time of 1:37.47.

Competing with not as many qualifiers as he would have liked to have, Sylvain said he was very happy with his squad’s performance.

“We were very excited about it,” Sylvain said. “Matter of fact, going into the meet we saw ourselves points wise coming out in third place. If it were not for an unfortunate disqualification in the 4×100 meter relay that we won, we would have finished third.

“I told our kids, we only had a few number of competitors qualify and for us to finish where we ended up is a great accomplishment.”

While the West St. John sprinters were showing why they were one of the best in all of Class 2A, the field event competitors of East St. John High School were having a solid meet.

Ashlee Cooper finished in sixth place in the girls shot put with a throw of 33-00.75 and Whitney Stewart finished in eighth place in the girls high jump with a solid attempt of 4-10.00.

The Wildcats trip of course was highlighted by the exploits of Vincent Stewart in the high jump. Taking home the state championship, the former basketball players cleared the bar at 6-07, defeating second-place finisher Jordan Pratt of Acadiana by only.2 meters.

“We are very excited for Vincent and his entire family,” East St. John Head Coach Eleno Rodriguez said. “It was great because practically his entire family was there. I know that they could not wait to get home and make signs for their yards celebrating his title.

“Vincent was not 100-percent. That was the most rewarding thing to me. To see a young man that was not 100-percent physically refuse to give up and want to win shows a lot character.”

While East and West St. John each brought back state championships to the River Region, the fans of Riverside and Reserve Christian should be very happy with their squad’s performances as both teams fought very hard.

Expected to contend for a state championship in the 100 meter dash as well as the 100 meter hurdles, Lady Eagle Antawnette Moten made the finals of both events. Although she finished a disappointing eighth in the hurdles with a time of 18.64, Moten’s third-place time of 12.89 in the 100 meter dash final was only .39 second behind the first-place finisher.

Moten also teamed up with Ashley Wilking, Rebecca Simon and Allison Young to help Reserve finish a very respectable fifth in the 4×100 meter relay.

For the meet, the Lady Eagles finished in a tie for 16th place with eight points.

“It was a little bit disappointing for Antawnette in the hurdles,” RCS Head Coach Mary Smith said. “Because the main reason is that she was in the lead for almost the entire race. She got over the last hurdle and then stumbled and fell and by the time she was able to regain her composure, seven other runners had already crossed the finish line ahead of her. We were kind of disappointed with the hurdles, but overall we all think that Antawnette did extremely well.

“Our relay team made the finals and we know that next year we will do even better. We know that we have to build our entire team up, but we know that we will be back next year and hopefully qualify a lot more people. Although the girls didn’t do as well as they would have liked, we are very proud of their girls and the way that they performed.”

Rounding out the River Region contingent were the jumpers and throwers of Riverside Academy. Along with the javelin-throwing Monica Millet, the jumping duo of Josh Labiche and Lee Haydel were able to make it to the finals of three events for the Rebels.

Millet had the best showing amongst the three as she finished in third place in the javelin with a throw of 119-07.

After winning the regional title in the high jump, Labiche, who yesterday was taking part in a state semifinal baseball game, finished in sixth place in the state meet with a jump of 6’0.

Competing in the long and triple jump, Haydel’s best finish came in the triple with a jump of 42-11.50, good for fourth place. His long jump attempt of 21-01.25 was good for eighth place.