Natchez High Bulldogs headed to south state track meet

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 1, 2009

NATCHEZ — Natchez High track coach Larry Wesley’s expectations of his team have been high all season.

This weekend is no different as the Bulldogs head to the MHSAA Class 5A South State meet at Hattiesburg High School.

The Bulldogs won the 4×200-meter relay last year, and he said they should have won the 4×100-meter relay as well, and he’s expecting nothing less on Saturday.

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“We’re in three relays, and I’m pretty sure we’re going to win at least two of them,” Wesley said. “Even if we don’t win the meet, we’re going to win the relays. I’m pretty certain of that.”

Gabe Campbell, Rico Richardson, Jeremy Davis and Willie Newman finished first with a time of 42.90 in the Region 3-5A meet, and the 4×200-meet was won by Davis, Richardson, Wesley Pendleton and Rolando Prater.

Natchez took third in the 4×400-meter relay with Davis, Prater, Ernest Jones and Travis Woods.

Jones, who has been in the top ranks of the high jump all season, has something to prove after finishing seventh in the high jump.

“He was sick,” Wesley said of Jones. “But he feels alright now.”

Wesley also has high hopes for two first-year track athletes that also have 4.0 GPAs.

Senior Lamesha Anderson took fourth place in the 300-meter hurdles at regionals, although she fell in the 110-meter hurdles.

She said the south state meet has her a bit nervous.

“I’m kind of worried that I might not make it, but I think I’m going to do good,” Anderson said. “Every meet it just gets harder.”

And sophomore Joseph Perry won the 800-meter run at regionals with a time of 2:00.00, the second best time in the state.

Starkville High School’s 800-meter runner finished at 1:59 in another region.

“He really didn’t have much competition,” Wesley said of Perry. “I’m really looking at him to do well.”

Perry, who also sometimes runs in the 4×400 relay, said he sort of got stuck with the long-distance running this year.

But it’s a challenge he’s enjoyed taking on.

“I knew I had a little speed so I just came out here and tried my luck,” Perry said. “It feels good to win, but it’s hard work. Now, I’m shooting for first.”

The meet begins at 9 a.m. in Hattiesburg.