Northwestern’s girls need no introduction in the track and field community.
That hasn’t been the case until recently for the American boys’ team.
"We used to go places and wear the name ‘Patriots’ and people thought we were from Miramar," American coach Enrico Knowles said. "Or we’d wear American and they thought we were from American Heritage."
On Friday evening, the longtime champion and the upcoming contender each shared the spotlight at Traz Powell Stadium.
Winning 11 events overall and breaking one individual and two relay meet records Northwestern won its sixth consecutive GMAC girls’ championship with 191.5 points to finish 72.5 points ahead of the rest of the field.
American, a regional champion for the first time last season, scored another first for its program winning its first-ever GMAC boys’ championship scoring 88 points to edge perennial powers Northwestern (77), Central (68) and Booker T. Washington (62).
The Patriots were strong once again in the field events led by senior Christian Williams’ victory in the high jump (6-8) and senior Wisdom Offor’s win in the triple jump (45-9). But it was American’s distance runners winning the 3,200-meter relay that gave it the edge it needed. Sophomore Dawun Hylton was one of the contributors also winning the 800 meters in 1:57.17.
On the girls’ side, Northwestern’s dominance was not a surprise.
It was how the Bulls have been doing it that indicates they have one of their deeper teams in recent years.
Senior thrower Lloydricia Cameron swept the discus and shot put as she has done consistently over the past couple of years. Cameron won the shot put in 48-2 and the discus in 165-8.
But the Bulls have strengthened their talent in the sprints making them the favorite so far this season to win a potential sixth state title in a row and state-record 11th overall.
On Friday, Northwestern showed off that speed by breaking the 400-meter relay record in the preliminaries with a time of 46.86 and later won the championship in the event with a time of 46.95.
The Bulls also broke the GMAC record in the 3,200-meter relay with a winning time of 9:15.00.
Northwestern sophomore Timetria Mitchell set a huge mark later on sweeping both hurdles events.
First, Mitchell won the 100-meter hurdles in 14.41 seconds.
But in the 300 hurdles, Mitchell finished with a time of 42.11 that broke the previous record of 42.17 set by Tiffany Ross in 2001.
Junior La’Kayla Harris wins the 100 (12.03) barely edging teammate Twanisha Terry. Harris also won the 200 (24.55) finishing two-hundredths of a second ahead of Southridge freshman Symone Mason.
Mason won the 400 meters in 56.36 to lead Southridge to a team runner-up finish with 119 points.
Another meet record fell in the girls’ pole vault where Coral Gables junior Johanna Schiefer set the mark with a vault of 10-feet, 6-inches.
Columbus sophomore Amir Rasul swept the 100 and 200 meters as he has consistently this season winning the first in 10.74 seconds and the latter in 21.48.
Central senior thrower Frederick Jones won the shot put (58-6.5) and the discus (178-6).
Booker T. Washington’s boys secured victories in both the 400-meter (41.61) and 1,600-meter relays (3:19.45).