The boys 55m Dash might be one of the most loaded events of all the state championships this weekend lead by defending champ in sophomore Michael Gupton (Rolesville) going up against Cameron Rose (Hickory Ridge), Keshaun Black (Mooresville) and Trevin Moyer (North Mecklenburg). Gupton holds the top PR in the field with his 6.31 and edged both Rose and Black in the 60m Dash at Mondo Elite. Black has run 6.36, Moyer 6.38 and Rose is the nations top 200m/300m runner. I'd expect a sub-6.3 to take this one with four of the country's best sprinters going head to head.
Cameron Rose is the nations best 300m runner and the current state record holder, but elected to just run the 55m Dash this weekend leaving the 300m wide open. Dominique Alexander (Millbrook), Christian Ruffin (Southeast Raleigh) and Trevin Moyer (North Mecklenburg) come in as the three boys who have broken 35 seconds this season. You'll also have Jaime Halton (Vance), Jarrell Guy (Mallard Creek) and Brian Williams (Southeast Raleigh) with 35.0 marks this season. Danny Renard (Heritage) and Michael Gupton (Rolesville) will be in the second fastest heat, but with proven 500m and 55m speed respectively I wouldn't be surprised to see one of them win it from the slower section.
Just like the 300m, the 500m is just as deep with no clear favorite coming in. The top 5 boys in Moyer, Guy, Renard, Jordyn Smith (Berry) and Dillon Leacock (Millbrook) have all run 1:05 this season with three others at 1:06. Moyer holds the top mark at 1:05.01, but so much can change in a crowded indoor 500m it's anyones race for the taking.
Four boys have run under 4:20 in the 1600m coming in with Ian Harrison holding the top mark at 4:17.05. He's also the #2 seed in the 3200m which he may decide to focus on along the the 4x800m. Tim Haughton (Apex Friendship) has run two sub 4:20 1600m this season at the VA Showcase and Mondo Elite having a big indoor campaign after an off season in cross country. Jack Rooney (Broughton) was victorious over most of this field at Mondo Elite only losing to 3A's Jake Toomey in the field. Carson Williams (Cardinal Gibbons) and Thomas Vo (Green Hope) both should be in the mix as well. Vo ran 1:55 for 800m last weekend and Williams is the defending 3200m state champ and ran a 4:16 1600m outdoors last year.
Haughton, Williams, Rooney and Vo will all double back, or at least are entered to, for the 1000m. Top seed AJ Williams (Pinecrest) has run 2:32.09, and might be the freshest in the field. Haughton, Williams and Rooney have each run 2:32 or 2:33 as well and will certainly be capable of taking the win. It should be a wide open race, and someone could scratch the mile in order to be fresh in the 1000m later in the day.
The 3200m is headlined by defending champion Carson Williams and cross country champ Ian Harrison. They ran 9:11 and 9:12 back in November in a battle at the Dash for Doobie. Jack Rooney and Maddon Muhammad (Myers Park) come in with sub-9:30 credentials as well. John Malach (Broughton) holds 9:23 PR from last indoor season, and might be the only one of this field coming in fresh to the 3200m if he decides to scratch the 1600m.
The boys shot put should be exciting, as the state record holder Mason Ellis (West Forsyth) will face off against Davin Vann (Cary). Ellis threw 62-4 for the state record last month, but Vann is right on his tails at 59-9. Ellis won indoors last year, but if both are throwing over the 60 foot mark tomorrow it'll make for a thrilling event.
We have 4 boys over 22 feet in the Long Jump with Keshaun Black (Mooresville) leading at 23-0.5, VJ Wilkins (Reagan), Spencer Evans (Lake Norman) and Eric Brown (Enloe). Evans will be doubling in the Long Jump and Pole Vault. He's only long jumped once this year, but held a 22-2.25. Wilkins and Brown will be the underclassman looking to earn their first NCHSAA State Title.
Evans main focus is the Pole Vault. His final step in rewriting the North Carolina record books is to take down the NCHSAA Indoor State Meet Record of 16-6 by Scott Houston. He jumped 17-0.25 for the win at Millrose a week ago and should be riding in off good momentum with that mark in site early in his jumps. Chandler Ward (Ragsdale) would be a heavy favorite to win in a regular year coming in with a mark of 15-0. It'll be tough to challange Evans, but he'll be there if something goes wrong.
Jordan Payne (Panther Creek) and Josh Green (Reagan) come in as the two favorites in the Triple Jump. Both come in with PRs in the 47s, Payne at 47-11 and Green 47-2.75. Tashaun Parker (Providence) and T Jaden Gaddy (Pinecrest) are the only other two who come in the marks of 45 feet this season.
We'll have a battle between Kendall Artis (Rolesville) and Danny Renard (Heritage) in the high jump. Both boys cleared 6-10 outdoors last year, but hold indoor best of 6-7 and 6-6 respectively. It wouldn't surprise me to see the bar go up to around 6-10 with the high competition of the state championships this weekend as both look to get to the 7 foot mark by this spring.