Booker T. Washington opened the track and field season with its 400-meter relay team running one of the fastest times in the nation.
The Tornadoes are out to prove they have more than just speed.
Another strong effort in the sprints and relays, coupled with some quality points in the field events, propelled Booker T. to the boys’ GMAC team championship Friday night at Traz Powell Stadium.
On the girls’ side, Northwestern’s mastery of the event continued as the Bulls won their fifth GMAC championship in a row, led by thrower Lloydricia Cameron’s sweep of the shot put and discus.
Booker T., which hopes to challenge defending state champion Plantation American Heritage for the Class 2A state crown this season, finished with 87 points and secured its first GMAC title.
The Tornadoes’ 400-meter relay team won in 41.58 seconds. At the Louie Bing Invitational in late February, the squad won the race in 41.09 seconds for the nation’s fastest mark at the time. That mark has since been bested by Heritage (41.01). Booker T. also won the 1,600-meter relay Friday in 3:17.50.
But Nicholas Norris gave Booker T. key points by winning the long jump with a distance of 22 feet, 6 inches. Norris also finished second to Jackson’s Tyrone Thornton (10.90) in the 100 meters in 10.93 seconds. Deltron Hopkins (100), Nigel Patten (200) and Krondis Larry (400) all finished in the top three in the sprints. Vaquan Small gave the Tornadoes a boost in the middle distance, winning the 800 meters in 1:57.69.
“This is another stepping stone for what our ultimate goal is for the season,” Booker T. coach Tim Harris Jr. said. “The guys are trying to come out of practices and stand up to the challenge. It gives us that much more confidence going forward.”
Cameron gave Northwestern’s girls 20 points with another dominating performance in the shot put, with a throw of 44-2, and the discus, with a toss of 156-10. The discus toss was the best in the state so far this season. The Bulls also won the 1,600- and 3,200-meter relays, and Ricardia Cooper won the 800 meters.
“Lloydricia has found that fire you need to succeed,” Northwestern coach Carmen Jackson said. “You always see her on the side working with her coaches and training to get better. She has goals and a vision of what she wants to accomplish.”
One county record was broken Friday when Coral Gables junior Johanna Schiefer won the pole vault with a height of 10-3, surpassing former South Dade vaulter Lindsay Chandler’s record of 10-0 set in 2001.
Coral Park’s sibling throwers Steven and Kevin Delgado finished first and second in each of their events, with Kevin winning the shot put in 58-4 1/2 and Steven winning the discus with a throw of 154-11.
Southridge had two athletes win two events.
Chris Prophet swept the boys’ hurdles, winning the 110-meters in 14.90 and the 300-meters in 38.31. Girls’ sprinter J’Nea Bellamy won the 100 meters in 11.93 and the 200 meters in 24.50.
Boys’ team scores: 1. Booker T. Washington 87; 2. Central 62; 3. Carol City 58; 4. Jackson 55; 5. Columbus 48; 6. Southridge and American 46; 8. Coral Park 41; 9. Ferguson 40; 10. Sunset 34.
Girls’ team scores: 1. Northwestern 139; 2. South Dade 71; 3. Southridge and Killian 65; 5. Ferguson 59; 6. Dr. Krop 39; 7. Carol City 32; 8. Coral Reef 29; 9. Norland 28; 10. Jackson 27.