There was plenty of Columbia blue and red on display at Wednesday’s District 4-5A track meet, some from the host Broadmoor High but most from Zachary High.
The Broncos swept the boys and girls titles in such impressive fashion that both squads had clinched their respective titles by the time the final event, the 1,600-meter relay, was staged.
The Zachary boys ran up 135 points to hold off second-place Central, which had 105. Scotlandville (88) and Broadmoor (84) were the next closest pursuers.
Zachary’s girls squad was even more impressive, totaling 1621/2 points, while Walker (116), Broadmoor (70.5) and Denham Springs (67) gave chase.
The top four finishers in each event qualified for next Thursday’s Region II, Class 5A meet at Baton Rouge High.
“It’s great for these kids. One of our goals was to be district champions,” Zachary coach Chris Carrier said. “The main thing at a meet like this is to qualify as many kids as we can for regionals next week.”
Among the Zachary girls standouts were Kenyatta Franklin, Janie O’Connor and Jennifer Brown.
Franklin took firsts in the 100 hurdles (15.30) and 300 hurdles (45.70). O’Connor doubled with wins in the 400 (54.88) and 200 (24.58). Brown took second in the 200, and also ran a leg on each of Zachary’s winning relay teams in the 4x200, 4x100 and 4x400 relays.
The Broncos finished with wins in nine of 11 events on the track, and had another in the field.
“Our girls have been having a lot of success all year, but we had some boys that really stepped up,” Carrier said. “Our 4x2 (200) and 4x4 (400 relays) stepped up, and we had some outstanding performances in the field.
“We needed that against Central and Scotlandville because they’re so good on the track.”
Zachary picked up two wins in the field. Christopher London won the discus (131 feet, 1 inch), and Darryl Anderson won the high jump (6-4). The Broncos won the 4x400 relay (3:27.18), and took second in the 800 relay.
Central got a boost from Gary Triplett, who took firsts in the 100 (11.06) and 200 (22.38). All totaled, Triplett scored 24 points and was named outstanding boys track performer.
“Last year we were third, just out of a trophy position. We made a few adjustments, and now we’re second,” Central coach Adam MacDowell said. “We’re creeping toward Zachary, but they have a phenomenal team. They have a great coach and great athletes.”
Central’s Craig Jones was the boys’ top field performer scoring 18 points after winning the long jump (22-3¾) and placing second in the triple jump.
The Wildcats got an unexpected boost from Micha Venable, who qualified for the regional meet with a fourth place finish in the 800.
“We don’t normally score in the distance events,” MacDowell said.
“It was unexpected but (Venable) got on the track and fought for those points. It was a big part of why we were second today.”
Denham Springs’ distance runner Amber Ferguson was the outstanding girls track athlete. She won the 1,600 (5:33.87) and the 3,200 (12:42.56) and was third in the 800.
Live Oak’s Ashley Davis was the top girls field athlete with wins in the shot put (38-8) and discus (111-0).
Walker’s Baylie Stears won the triple jump (34-6½), and went on to score 26 total points after adding second places in the high jump and the 1,600.
Denham Springs’ Phoenix Richardson was a boys double winner after running the top times in the 110 hurdles (15.62) and 300 hurdles (40.95).