track and field | state meet preview

Northwestern girls’ program aiming for 11th state crown


If you go

What: The state track and field championships.

When: Friday-Saturday.

Where: The University of North Florida, 1 UNF Drive, Jacksonville.

Meet schedule – Friday: Classes 1A and 2A; Saturday: Classes 3A and 4A.

Event schedule - Field events and running prelims: 9 a.m.; Running finals: 4 p.m.

Boys’ defending state champions – Class 4A: Orlando Olympia; 3A: Jacksonville Bartram Trail; 2A: St. Petersburg Lakewood; 1A: Melbourne Holy Trinity.

Girls’ defending state champions – Class 4A: Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas; 3A:Miami Northwestern; 2A: Plantation American Heritage; 1A: Maclay.

Northwestern girls’ track and field stars have gotten cozy at the top the medal stand at state track in recent years.

Barring an unforeseen series of unfortunate events, the Bulls should find a comfortable spot this weekend at the top of the state championship record book.

With one of its deepest teams in recent years, Northwestern figures to be the biggest winner among Miami-Dade County track and field competitors at the state championships that will be held Friday and Saturday at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville.

An 11th championship overall would give Northwestern the most of any girls team in state history.

The Bulls are aiming for a sixth consecutive state title, which would tie Lakeland Christian for the second-longest championship streak in state history and two behind the record of eight in a row set by Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas.

The Bulls have won eight of the past nine championships and have enough favorites and qualifiers to dominate Class 3A.

Senior thrower Lloydricia Cameron is vying for her fourth and fifth individual titles. Freshman Taranique Alexander enters as the favorite in the long jump and triple jump, with sophomore Briana Eskridge likely to score high in the triple jump.

Temetria Mitchell is a favorite in the hurdles, and La’Kayla Harris is expected to do well in the 200 meters. The Bulls are also strong favorites to win all three relays.

Led by sprinters Jeffery Green and Cordell Lamb, the Northwestern boys will try to make it a state title sweep — something the school has yet to accomplish.


• Northwestern isn’t the only team with a chance to win gold in Class 3A. Carol City’s Terneka Gibson (400), Norland’s Kimani Austin-Reese (300 hurdles), and Central’s Sherrie Hinds (800) and Fred Jones (shot put, discus) are among the state’s top contenders in their respective events.

• American’s boys will try to push St. Thomas Aquinas for the team title in Class 4A. The Patriots have Ari Cogdell in the 400 meters, Yohance Haynes in the 800 meters and are top seeds in the 1,600- and 3,200-meter relays. Coral Reef’s Kurt Convey is a top seed in the 3,200 meters.

• Southridge’s girls are looking to finish strong in Class 4A as well. Dominique Bullock could be one of the meet’s top performers in the long jump, 100 and 400 meters. The Spartans also have freshman Symone Mason in the sprints, Kayla Johnson in the 800 and Epiphany Thompson (shot put, discus) all in solid contention. Ferguson’s 3,200-meter relay is also a favorite to win gold.

• A year after coming up one point short of a state title, Booker T. Washington has several contenders in the sprints to make another push for the Class 2A state title. Krondis Larry and Nigel Bethel are among the top contenders in the sprints. The Tornadoes, however, will have to make due without Vaquan Small, who sustained a torn meniscus. Jackson’s Tyrone Thornton (long jump) on the boys’ side and Daesha Rogers (800 meters, 1,600 relay) on the girls’ side are strong contenders. Ransom Everglades’ Gaby Correa is the top seed in the boys’ 1,600 meters.

• Dade Christian’s Jonathan Saintil (triple jump) and Archbishop Curley’s Germaine Small (long jump) will each look to win gold in Friday’s Class 1A meet.

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