By Steve Williams
One might say Halls High won the first Battle of Emory Road Track Meet on cruise control.
The guys and gals in Red and White took first place in 16 of the 34 events and finished with a combined 192 points last week at Halls.
Karns edged Powell 115 to 113 for second place and Gibbs came in fourth with 57 points.
In addition to earning the new meet’s trophy and getting to keep it for a year, the Halls team enjoyed its Senior Night even more with the special victory.
Halls Coach Tony Tampas expected a close meet coming in, but ended up getting some extra points he hadn’t figured on. He also had some athletes to fill in for some who were “dinged up.”
Tampas, in his 12th season at Halls, said the track world is like a “cat and mouse game” with your opponents until the day of the big meet, “and then you got to show everything and pull out all the stops.
“It turned out to be a good day for us. For the kids to step up and do the right things and try their best and give their all, it worked out real well for us. They were really excited with winning this meet.”
Kendall Moles, a junior competing in her first season in the sport, led the way by sweeping the shot put and discus events and bettering her school records in both again.
“I love it,” said Moles. “I’ve always been one to want to compete with myself.”
She also enjoys every meet being a new challenge.
Moles tossed the shot 38 feet and one-half inch, and then hurled the discus 111-10.
Quinton Cook-Carter, a senior, was a big point-getter on the track as he sped to victories in the 200 (23.28) and 400-meter (52.67) dashes and was second in the 100.
Connor Cummings placed in four events and contributed 17 points to Halls’ total. The sophomore prevailed in the high jump (5-4), was second in the 110 hurdles and 300 hurdles and came in third in the long jump.
Senior Ashley Newton swept the 1600 (6:42.62) and 3200 (15:05.77) as the Halls girls racked up 25 points in the two distance events.
Other winners for Halls were juniors Caden Stephens (11.64 in the 100) and Tae Rucker (20-6½ in the long jump) on the boys’ side, plus junior Keeley Noe (13.46 in the 100), sophomore Molly Stover (3:28.03 in the 800) and senior Ella Campbell (28-4 in the triple jump) on the girls’ side.
Halls also had victories in the boys’ and girls’ 4×100, boys’ 4×400 and girls’ 4×800. The boys’ 4×100 was timed in 44.97 and its 4×400 posted a time of 3:49.40. The girls’ 4×100 ran a 53.51 and their 4×800 clocked a 13:42.22.
“Hopefully, we’ll continue to have some good success through the rest of the season,” said Coach Tampas. “If we keep everybody healthy and hopefully get through sectionals, maybe we can get a few of them to the state if we’re lucky.”