Williams shines for Wildcats at Woodlawn
Published 11:45 pm Tuesday, April 15, 2014
By RYAN ARENA
LAPLACE — East St. John split their track and field squad up between two events last week, getting tune up reps for both its boys and girls roster all around as it gets closer to the District 7-5A championship meet in two weeks.
The Wildcats field athletes took part in the Woodlawn Panther Relays last Thursday, while Friday saw East St. John host a small relay events-only meet Friday at Joe Keller Memorial Stadium in the annual Wildcat Carnival Relays.
East St. John and Carver were the lone participating teams Friday on a day that both East St. John boys coach Greg Gathers and girls coach Mark Creecy said allowed for some lineup tinkering and experimentation, as both coaches attempt to find the optimal points-scoring lineup to set the Wildcats up for district, regional and perhaps state success.
ESJ event winners were: girls 4×200 — Anjelique Johnson, Ladeja Harris, Bianca Holmes and Keilah Scott (1:51.44); boys distance medley — Darrien Perry, Kenneal Tassin, Johnnel Crockett and Brian Cain (12:27.25); boys 1600 sprint medley — Donald Allen, Javen Brown, Jalyn Brown and Johnnel Crockett (50.46); girls 800 sprint medley — Chelsea Eugene, Jirah Brown, Kori Gray and Cache Burell (2:11.57); boys 4×800 meter relay — Brian Cain, Johnnel Crockett, Brian Davis and Darrien Perry (8:49.76); girls 4×100 meter relay — Bianca Holmes, Ayonte Thomas, Keilah Washington and Ladeja Harris (52.67); girls 4×400 — Donte Fleming, Jirah Brown, Chelsea Eugene and Keilah Scott (5:02.27) and boys 4×400—Darius Lipps, Jacob McNeil, Jarod Jackson and Dequan Cross (3:33.19).
Gathers noted that losses in the 4×1 and 4×2 boys relays to Carver came as a surprise, but said help may be on the way. Dontrell Allen, who has been nursing a leg injury over the past few weeks, may be on the verge of a return.
“He’s going to be special,” said Gathers. We’re hoping to get him back for one relay this week. We’re being cautious, though. It’s real touch and go.”
He was encouraged by the performance of the 4×400 team.
“That was a different lineup that I was able to get a look at, and one I think will give us our best chance there,” said Gathers.
At Woodlawn, Darren Williams excelled, winning the boys discus with a throw of 123-04 and finishing second in the shot put (43-10.20). Kordell Vance won the pole vault (9-06).
“We got some good work in,” said Gathers. “We’re in that Bayou district now and the field events are going to be tougher than they’ve been.’
“I’m evaluating what we have there and where we can develop some points and some depth.”
Gathers said Williams’ strong performance over both events was a pleasant surprise. An even bigger surprise, he said, was the emergence of Vance and teammate Obediyah Payne in the pole vault. Payne cleared 7-06.
“That was the most interesting thing. I’ve found two pole vaulters,” said Gathers. “We haven’t really had pole vaulters over the past few seasons, so that’s somewhere different where we might be able to score. I’m hoping Obediyah can get over eight to 8.5. Kordell has cleared 10 feet.”
Ayonte Thomas won the girls triple jump (34-11). Dominique Gray took second in the girls discus (89.08).
SCOTT HIGHLIGHTS RAMS PERFORMANCE—West St. John’s Quan Scott finished third in the long jump (22-07.50) and sixth in the triple jump to lead West St. John at the Tiger Relays at Thibodaux last week.
Jeremy Jackson led the Ram track athletes with a fourth place finish in the 100 (10.97).
18 teams competed at the event.