• By Bill Caine

WCMS track and field wins state title


THE WCMS TRACK AND FIELD STATE CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM was celebrated by friends and family at an event at the high school Tuesday, June 8. (Photo by Bill Caine)
THE WCMS TRACK AND FIELD STATE CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM was celebrated by friends and family at an event at the high school Tuesday, June 8. (Photo by Bill Caine)

The Woodford County Middle School track and field boys’ and girls’ teams

took home state championships Saturday, June 5, in Louisville. The teams

came into the meet confident after winning the Bluegrass Conference

title two weeks ago.

“I could not be more proud of the way the boys and girls competed

today,” said WCMS Coach Adam Swingle. “Each athlete gave their very best

for their team, and each person’s best effort resulted in team state

titles. These kids have a special place in my and my coaches’ hearts.

This group has overcome so much adversity this season and did it with a

maturity way beyond their years. A special thank you to all of my

assistant coaches who work so hard to prepare the kids to compete and

the parents who support us in every way possible.”

The Lady Tigers won the state championship behind some incredible

performances that included state champions and a handful of state

runner-ups. Payton Asher broke the state record in the girls’ 100-meter

hurdles during the preliminary rounds and later finished runner-up

(15.69). Asher then finished runner-up in the triple jump (32 feet, 2.75

inches). Asher also placed fourth in the 300-meter hurdles (51.18).

“This track season and the success that came with it was a really big

surprise after the number of obstacles that were thrown at us throughout

the past year,” said Asher. “I am incredibly proud of how we all

performed this season. We had multiple new records going up on the

board. I am super happy with myself and beating the record in the 100

hurdles at the first meet and improving my time. Having my twin brother

on the team was a huge help; in my opinion, he was always there to help

push me to be my very best.”

Macy Stickel finished 10th in the 400-meter dash (1:03.44). Addison

Moore was runner-up in the girls’ 3200-meter run (11:53.00). Moore also

placed third in the 1600-meter run (5:24.85). Olivia Dabney placed

fourth in the girls’ discus (82 feet, five inches). Dabney also placed

fifth in the shot put (31 feet, 11 inches) and 14th in the turbojav (61

feet). Ayana Wilson finished 11th in the girls’ pole vault (six feet,

six inches).

“Coach Swingle and Coach (Kevin) Hash have made my first track season,

of hopefully many, a wonderful experience,” said Dabney. “Three months

ago, I didn’t know anything about track and field. Then, my mom

encouraged me to try out and learn to throw shot put and discus. It has

been a lot of fun learning and excelling in something new. I’m so glad I

was part of this team.”

The girls’ 4x200 relay team of Stickel, Chosen Johnson, Jasmine Williams

and Asher won the state title (1:53.01). The girls’ 4x400 relay team of

Stickel, Erin Myers, Larkyn Hewett and Gabby Gampper finished sixth

(4:37.01). The girls’ 4x800 relay team of Hewett, Shealynn Coffey,

Gampper and Myers (11:18.49) finished 13th.

Charla Gormley represented St. Leo school in three events. Gormley

placed third in the 100-meter hurdles (16.63), eighth in the 300-meter

hurdles (53.33) and fourth in the long jump (15 feet, 5.5 inches).

The WCMS boys’ team racked up top-three performances as they cruised to

a team state title. Nolan Asher won the state crown in the high jump

(five feet, four inches). Asher was also runner-up in the boys’

400-meter dash (52.43).

Leland Taylor was runner-up in the boys’ 200-meter dash (23.93). Chaz

Stout finished runner-up in the boys’ pole vault (nine feet, six inches).

Ryan Hendrix placed fifth in the 800-meter dash (2:13.91). Hendrix also

finished eighth in the 1600-meter run (4:54.00). Mo Hash finished 18th

in the boys’ discus (93 feet, 11 inches).

Chase Thurman was runner-up in the boys’ turbojav (110 feet, three

inches). Braxton Brock finished eighth in the boys’ triple jump (33

feet, 8.5 inches).

The boys’ 4x100 relay team of Jed Padgett, Brock, Wyatt Crowe and Taylor

finished seventh (50.98). The boys’ 4x200 team of Asher, Padgett, Crowe

and Taylor won the state title (1:38.02). The boys’ 4x400 relay team of

Hendrix, Padgett, Asher and Crowe won the state title (3:50.31).

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