Cuthbetson, Weddington Win Come Out On Top With 3A Repeats


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Winning their fourth straight team title, the Cuthbertson girls put together a dominant performance to kick off indoor state competition at the NCHSAA 3A state meet on Friday evening.

The Cavaliers racked up an impressive 106.5 points, finishing 59.5 points ahead of Parkland in second. In the boys team title race, Weddington scored 91 points to win over the Cuthbertson boys in second.

Cuthbertson only won three events - the girls 4x200m, 4x400m, and pole vault (Ava Studney) - yet placed multiple athletes in many events to rack in points. Highlights included runner-up finishes from Madeline Hill in the 1,600m and Lillian Nasta in the 3,200m.

Other athletes from Cuthbertson's star-studded distance group put together solid point-scoring performances, including Gabriella Castro (fifth in the 1,600m, seventh in the 3,200m), Marissa Bosland (sixth in the 1,000m) and Leah Helms (seventh in the 1,000m). 

Crucial third place finishes in the 55m dash (Victoria Teasley), 500m (Mackenzie Townsend) and long jump (Jade McClain) also added key points to Cuthbertson's winning total.

The Weddington boys captured the team title thanks in large part to senior Jake Toomey, who pulled off the difficult 1,600m/1,000m distance double in winning fashion. Toomey kicked past Dwayne Lillie (A.C Reynolds) down the final stretch to win the 1,600m in 4:23.97, and dominated the 1,000m with his winning time of 2:35.99. He also anchored Weddington to a second place finish in the final event of the day, the 4x400m.

Other event wins and season best performances from Alec Mock in the shot put and Nick Callis in the pole vault helped elevate Weddington over the rest of the competing teams. 

Besides seeing commanding team wins, spectators witnessed individuals run new record times. 

Terrell Robinson Jr (Mount Tabor) clocked 6.32 in the 55m dash for a new NC #3 time and a 3A state meet record. The time also places him near the top of the national rankings at US #4. 

In the 55m hurdles, Zariyah Black (Eastern Guilford) set a new girls state meet record in 7.96. Black followed up her record-breaking run with a title win in the 55m dash, a performance that earned her the designation of girls meet MVP.

Chapel Hill's girls 4x800m team, led by 1,000m champion Megan Marvin, also broke the 3A state meet record with a winning time of 9:30.01. 

Furman signee Jonna Strange (North Iredell) nearly missed setting a new state meet record in the 3,200m, but nevertheless won the event in an impressive time of 10:52.42.

In the long sprints, Alyssa Hernandez (Northern Guilford) threw down yet another stellar performance on the track in the girls 500m. Her title-winning time of 1:15.57 was just off her NC #2 time of 1:14.67 from the VA Showcase in January. In the boys race, Mitchell Norris (Asheville) ran a new personal best of 1:05.62 to win and rank fifth in the state in the event.

One of the most spirited performances of the day came from senior distance star Jacob Gallant (Mount Tabor). After finishing second in the 3,200m at the indoor and outdoor state meets as a junior, the UNC Charlotte commit finally captured the title in the event in 9:18.17 future 49er teammate Avery Cannon (Watauga).

Field event action included huge performances from jumps star Jieem Bullock (North Brunswick). The future LSU tiger earned the boys meet MVP award behind wins in the high jump and long jump, as well as his bronze medal finish in the 55m hurdles. 

Other field highlights include Jayda Hunter (Jacksonville), who set a new personal best to win the triple jump with a new NC #4 mark of 38-7.75. Mock's huge PR of 55-10.75 in the shot put helped him earn the win ahead of Luke Noonan (Piedmont), who also threw a big lifetime best for second.