The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Latest Sports

November 15, 2012

Lilly headed Down Under

Shady junior to compete in international track meet in Australia

You might say Ben ‘B.J.’ Lilly burns up the track at Shady Spring High School.

“We like to tease B.J. that he runs with his feet on fire,” coach Vince Culicerto said. “He’s the fastest guy we’ve got.”

Lilly, who helped the Tigers finish runner-up in the Class AA 4x100 relay, and third place in the 4x200 in May at the state track meet in Charleston, has been invited to represent the USA next summer in The Down Under Track & Field Meet in Australia.

The junior is one of 300 young athletes from America who will compete, and one of only six from West Virginia.

Lilly will leave June 30 and will spend seven days in Australia. In the offseason, he hopes to gain sponsorships from area businesses.

He played soccer in the fall, scoring three goals as a striker for Shady. Running track is his first love, however.

“I started in middle school. One of my teachers thought I’d be good,” Lilly said. “I’ve stuck with it.”

His strategy in running is simple. Get out in front and stay there.

“I start out fast and strong in the blocks. A faster start helps me keep ahead of people,” Lilly said. “I train myself every day to run to get a faster time. I like to be a second ahead, rather than a second behind.”

Of all the events, he prefers the 200-meters, where he finished ninth in the trials and just missed the finals at states last year.

Lilly said the energy really flows when you hit the final curve.

“You hear your school and your teammates calling your name,” he said. “It gets your adrenaline going and it makes you push faster.”

Having the best kick on the team helps as well, whether in the 200 or the relays. He runs the 1st leg of the 4x100 to try to give the Tigers the lead, and he does the 3rd leg in the 4x200 to maintain the lead.

“B.J. does a good job,” Culicerto said. “He’s just a little old fellow. Quiet. But he gets on the that track and he can hang with the best of them.

“He’s a hard-working kid, and a good-natured boy. He’s fun to be around.”

Lilly’s best time in the 200 was a 23:25 last spring in the Oak Hill Lions Club Invitational.

But it was a meet at Cabell Midland High School in Ona that was most memorable for him.

“It was our first time against AAA teams, and some at school doubted we’d do anything,” Lilly recalled. “But we did what we were supposed to do. My (relay) team got first, and I got second in the 200. I was proud we showed people we can compete with anybody.”

He hopes to create some more excitement this spring, as Shady moves up to the AAA ranks.

“I want to make a good name for my school, so people will come to Shady and run track for us,” Lilly said. “I also want to do good for my family and make them happy.”

Lilly is the son of Virginia Kincaid and Douglas Lilly.

Anyone who would like to sign up as a sponsor can contact him at 304-763-2082.

— E-mail: dstillwell@register-herald.com

1
Text Only
Latest Sports
  • 041814 Sisler Diamond Classic continues today

    Fayetteville pitcher Kaitlyn Sisler pitched five innings of shutout softball as the Pirates beat Oak Hill 10-0 Wednesday in the Diamond Classic in Fayetteville.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • D’Antoni’s Lakers future still unclear

    With the Los Angeles Lakers season officially over — the Lakers beat the Spurs 113-100 Wednesday but finished 27-55 overall, the most losses in the club’s history and the franchise’s worst winning percentage since the Minneapolis Lakers in 1957-58 — Marshall fans will be keeping a close eye on what’s going on in Tinsel Town over the coming days.

    April 17, 2014

  • Turnbull’s tenure dominates WVU wrestling history

    Did Oliver Luck really do a thorough job in deeply evaluating Craig Turnbull’s 36-year career as wrestling coach before firing him?

    April 17, 2014

  • WVU’s top football prospects working out for NFL teams

    As we draw ever closer to the NFL Draft, the prospect workouts for teams are picking up steam for former Mountaineers. Both running back Charles Sims and defensive end Will Clarke have a busy road ahead.

    April 17, 2014

  • 041814 james monroe Crusaders make history in loss to James Monroe

    The first season for Greater Beckley Christian’s baseball team has been met with growing pains — to say the least.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 041714 millard Kickoff time set for WVU-Alabama

    West Virginia football fans can now start counting down to the exact minute, instead of just the day.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Questions raised about Turnbull’s firing

    Dr. Stephen Graber, an associate professor at the West Virginia University School of Medicine, is among the latest WVU teachers to deplore Oliver Luck’s firing of veteran wrestling coach Craig Turnbull.

    April 17, 2014

  • Gettin’ ready for gobbler season: Step 4 — the setup

    This just in — in a recent study on turkey hunting and turkey hunters it was found that 98.7 percent of the time when hunters were unsuccessful when calling in a gobbler, the hunter made some mistake during the last 50 yards of the bird’s approach.

    April 17, 2014

  • 041714 wright Former Red Devil star realizing dream of playing D-I basketball

    When former Oak Hill High School standout Kalif Wright was a kid, he would play EA Sports’ NCAA March Madness video games and dream of one day getting a chance to play in the NCAA Tournament.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • McClung moving from mound to dugout

    Seth McClung was getting his daughters Madison and Fallon inside and ready for their baths when his phone rang. He’s said before that he enjoys the role of “daddy day care.”

    April 15, 2014

NCAA Hoops
AP Video