The Georgia High School Association boys state track championships got underway Thursday with plenty of hopefuls from both Campbell High School and Whitefield Academy seeking honors over the course of the three-day event at Memorial Stadium in Jefferson.
It started well for Whitefield Academy's Cameron Thornton as he repeated as state champion in the Class A 1,600 meters. That and a third-place finish by Andrew Dunkleberger in the discus helped the Wolfpack rest in second place in the team standings after Day. 1.
The majority of the running event preliminaries will take place Friday with the finals set for Saturday. Thornton is also seeking to repeat as state champ in the 800 meters.
Whitefield has eight athletes participating, while the Class AAAAA Spartans from Campbell have 15 athletes in Jefferson with Trey Fluellen a solid contender for top honors in 100-meter hurdles.
The state championship meet for the girls will take place next week, May 12-14, in Albany.
- In Columbus this past week, both Whitefield golf teams participated in the state tournament for the first time in school history. At the Bull Creek Golf Club, the Lady Wolfpack finished eighth with Colleen Panosian carding a final score of 83 to finish tied for fourth overall.
The Whitefield boys tied for ninth overall at the Green Island Golf Club. Ty Hampel scored a team-low 78, and was followed by James Schultz (79), Anders Olsson (80) and Tyler Thompson (98).
- The news wasn’t as good in the opening round of the state playoffs for the Wolfpack boys soccer and baseball teams. The soccer team, after concluding the regular season at 12-5 following a three-game win streak, had its season halted with a 1-0 setback to Hebron Christian Academy on Wednesday.
- That was tight, but the Whitefield baseball team had an even more agonizing conclusion to their season the night before. Facing No. 8-ranked Commerce in a best-of-three series, Whitefield split Monday’s doubleheader with a solid pitching performance from Nahim Attaf to help secure the Wolfpack win.
Yet in Tuesday’s deciding Game 3, Whitefield led 11-5 after five innings, but gave up 10 runs in the sixth and eventually fell 18-14 in a thrice rain-delayed game that took nearly four hours to complete.
- On the diamond at Campbell this spring, a Spartan team that won just two games in 2010 finished at 6-18. The team boasted only two seniors and coach Ron Wendt is optimistic that better days are ahead for the once proud CHS program.
One of the seniors was captain TJ Whitt, who batted leadoff and paced the team’s pitching staff in wins.
Freshman Austin Green led the team in hitting at a .324 clip, while Imani Will was tops on the team with a dozen stolen bases. Other contributing players included; Landen Law, Alex Jardine, Caleb Parks, Cory Hawkins, JJ Brown, Chad Criss, James Glendinning, Taylor Colwell, Charlie Sharitz, and Christian Pace.
The team ended the season on a positive note by playing with athletes from the Horizon Miracle League in Acworth last Saturday. The Spartans participated as buddies in the special needs baseball game as the team has taken on more community service projects the past two seasons.
“I am very proud of the players and managers who gave of their time to give back to the community in this way.’’ said Wendt. “With most of the team coming back next year, we are all very excited that they have something to build on with the experience that they gained this year playing in one of the most competitive regions in the state.’’