Northview, EA making final push for playoffs

Published 8:06 am Monday, May 2, 2005

By By Tim Cottrell
Escambia Academy may need to find a bigger trophy room.
The Cougar Track &Field team traveled to Mobile Saturday to compete in the State Junior Varsity Track &Field Meet. In a hotly contested meet, the boy's squad came out on top claiming the state championship by only four points over second place finisher Jackson Academy. The girl's squad finished third.
Wesley Channell and Andrea Nall also racked up the hardware for EA, with each winning the MVP for boys and girls.
"The kids just laid it on the line," Bert Rice, volunteer coach of the track team, said. "Some of the gutsiest performances were kids who had their all-time best performances and may not have won an event, but scored points for us and helped us along the way. You look at the final totals, with us winning by only four points, one person made a lot of difference."
Channell and Nall won a number of individual events. Channell finished first place in the 110-meter hurdles, where he set a new state record, as well as in the triple jump. Nall finished first in the mile- and two-mile runs, and set a new state record in both. She won the girls' long jump as well, but failed to break her own state record she set last year. In addition to those three, Nall also finished first in the 300-meter hurdles.
Nall and Channell were not the only Cougars to have big days. Alan Ash mirrored Nall's accomplishments in the mile- and two-mile runs, winning and setting state records in both. Claire Jones won the girls 100-meter hurdles and set a new state record time, and won the high jump and tied for a state record.
"Andrea set three state records," Rice said. "Alan Ash set a few more. The kids did so well, and I deserve none of the credit for it. Wesley was tremendous, and Andrea was just dominating. I'm very happy. They worked so hard all year. I'm glad to see such good results from their hard work."
In addition to the tremendous efforts of Channell, Nall, Ash, and Jones, several other Cougar runners pitched in points to push EA over the top. Pierce Robinson, Wade Matthews, Jake Taylor, Clay Helton, Andy Anderson, Robert Johnson, Marshall Burkette, Jian Chen, Alex Hetzel, Carlee Broughton, and Kristen Matthews all scored points on the day in various events.
"Sometimes in other sports you can go through the motions," Rice said. "But in track you're out there on an island. Everyone can see if you're dogging it, and these kids worked so hard and competed so well. I'm very excited for them."
Escambia Academy's varsity track squad will travel to Selma Thursday and Friday for the senior high state meet.

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