By Steve Keenan
For The Register-Herald
Second place had entirely different meanings for two local track and field standouts Saturday in Charleston.
Greenbrier East’s Trey Cochran started the morning session of the final day of the annual state championship meet by engaging in a battle with Jefferson’s Jordan Hardiman in the Class AAA high jump. Hardiman eventually won with a leap of 6 feet, 8 inches before missing on three attempts at 7 feet. Cochran, who has been battling with tendonitis for several months, was runner-up with a personal best of 6-6.
“I hurt my knee Friday at practice,” said Cochran. “It finally gave out.”
But, he collected himself enough to perform well Saturday morning. “I’m happy with it, real happy with it. I worked the past nine months just for today.”
Cochran’s teammate, Tyler Hanna, tied for third in the high jump with a leap of 6-0.
Cochran and Hanna later ran legs of the Spartans’ 4x400-meter relay unit, which very nearly joined the Greenbrier East girls on the winners’ podium. In the meet’s last event, the Spartan boys registered a time of 3 minutes, 26.70 seconds to narrowly miss out on a defeat of winner Martinsburg, which ran 3:26.22.
With 26 points, East finished fifth in the boys triple-A standings. The East girls were eighth with 25 points.
While Cochran rather enjoyed himself Saturday, Woodrow Wilson senior Ramon Edwards didn’t.
Hoping to finally conquer Jefferson sensation Dante Price, Edwards was again left unfulfilled. Price overcame a strong early portion of the 100 final by Edwards to pull away in the closing meters and register a front-running victory in 10.74 seconds. Edwards placed second in 10.97.
“Like always, he caught me at the end,” a subdued Edwards said of Price, who also had victories in the 200 (22.92) and 400 (49.02). “He’s just got a whole different gear.
“(It feels) terrible. That was my chance.”
Edwards later finished seventh in the 200.
Some other area highlights:
n Webster County’s Luther Stoots won the Class AA high jump Friday with a leap of 6-0. The Highlanders’ Samantha Stout was third in the 800 (2:27.03).
n Pocahontas County’s Fredriciah Gardner was second in the single-A discus (101-10).
n Greenbrier West senior Colby Ennis placed third in the Class A 110 hurdles (16.16) and anchored the Cavaliers’ shuttle hurdles squad (1:01.34) to a runner-up finish. Other team members were Malik Boatwright, Devin George and Jordan Tincher. West’s Corey Cox was third in the high jump (6-0).
n The Oak Hill boys got a pair of third-place efforts in Class AAA — Deon Marion with a 20-5 3/4 leap in the long jump and Jovare Brown with a 50.03 clocking in the 400.
n Shady Spring got a fourth-place finish from Lyndsey Thompson in the girls 300 hurdles (46.89). The Tigers’ Kaylee Dickenson (5-2) placed fourth in the high jump.
n Midland Trail’s Ethan Barker posted fourth-place finishes in the 100 (11.61) and 200 (23.67), and ran a leg of the Patriots’ 4x200 relay team, which was fifth.
n Westside’s James Adkins was fourth in the Class AA shot put (43-9).
n Woodrow Wilson’s Lashonda McDowell was fourth in the 400 (58.74).
n Greenbrier East’s Ashley Morgan placed fourth in the girls long jump (16-1).
n Richwood’s Breanna Mazzella was third in the 3200 (12:07.19) Friday and posted a fourth-place effort in the 1600 (5:32.13) Saturday. Her teammate, Jamie Bailey, was fourth in the high jump (5-0). The Lumberjacks placed third in both boys and girls shuttle hurdles events. The girls quartet of Bailey, Haley Hinchman, Hannah Brown and Hannah Green was timed in 1:11.46, while the boys unit of Zach Bennett, Levi Mowery, Gary Boggs and Terry Frasier crossed in 1:01.41.
n Nicholas County’s Autumn Tyree was fourth in the long jump (16-0 3/4).
n Overall team winners were the Jefferson boys and Buckhannon-Upshur girls in Class AAA, the Ritchie County boys and Frankfort girls in Class AA and the Doddridge County boys and Williamstown girls in Class A.