Pritchard takes second in high; Rams sitting in lead

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 31, 2004

GREENVILLE &045; At least his mark in MPSA Class A still stands.

Wilkinson Christian’s Brad Pritchard couldn’t get the overall mark of 6-8 1/2 set back on 1998, and on Friday he had to settle on second in the high jump at 6-4 in the first day of the MPSA state meet at Washington School.

Pritchard finished second behind the winning jump of 6-5 as he and the Rams finished the field events well in first place with 42 points.

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&uot;He just looked tired on his jumps,&uot; WCCA head coach Paul Hayles said. &uot;It was just one of those things. Neither of them jumped well. They both looked tired. They both went out at 6-5, but Brad had missed the previous height. It’s one of those things.&uot;

Fortunately for Pritchard and the Rams, he refocused and won the triple jump at 41-9. They also got three more seconds in field events &045; Travis Allen in second in the long jump at 19-10, Brandon Wisner in the pole vault at 11-0 and LaValle Johnson in the discus at 136-9.

That put the Rams in first with 42 points with 18 points on the second place team. Behind them in the standings are East Holmes with 24, DeSoto School with 20 and University Christian School with 10.

UCS edged out the Rams for the South State title last week. The running events begin at 11 a.m. today with the 3,200-meter run and continue until the 5:30 p.m. awards presentation.

&uot;We were in a better situation last time because we had more personnel last week,&uot; Hayles said. &uot;But at the state meet you’ve got to perform. We’ve had a great track practice, and hopefully we’ll perform tomorrow.&uot;

In girls, the Adams Christian Lady Rebels are anticipating today’s running events, particularly a battle that’s brewing in the 400 with defending state champion Nikki Hankins.

But on Friday in field events Brittany Gamberi &045; who came in with the best long jump in MPSA at 16-3 3/4 &045; couldn’t get her feet down and didn’t place.

&uot;She couldn’t get her steps down,&uot; AC head coach Bill Richardson said. &uot;Even the Prep coach said she would have gone 17 feet if she had got on the board. But she didn’t get on the board.&uot;

Arianna DeLaSalle finished fifth in the high jump at 4-10, and Stevie Dellinger finished sixth in the shot put at 28-2. In boys, Heath Williams finished fourth in the discus at 112-0 and did not place in the shot put.

But plenty of attention will be on Hankins and that 400-meter that will start at 1:43 p.m. today. Hankins, who won the race last year clean in 60.0, ran 60.02 at South State to win it.

The Class AAA record is 58.20 seconds set back in 1981.

&uot;Somebody is going to push somebody to a class record in that 400,&uot; Richardson said. &uot;Hankins is coming in with a minute flat, and she’s coming in No. 3. And she had the best workout of her track career today. The other girl is coming in there with a 59.6. Somebody is going to come real close to that if the weather cooperates.&uot;

Jackson Prep finished the first day of the meet in first place, but the Lady Patriots’ streak of state titles at the state meet may be in jeopardy thanks to an upstart Washington team that’s got them in a dogfight.