Newton overall track champions in Region 2-AAAAAA

COVINGTON -- Newton's track team garnered seven first-place finishes in Region 2-AAAAAA track and field championships at Twelve Oaks Stadium in Hampton to win the combined championship on Wednesday.

Long distance runner Alex Grady won the 1,600-meter race with a time of four minutes, 29.17 seconds as well as taking the top spot in the 3,200, crossing the finish line in 10:03.

Also winning multiple titles for Newton were Brianna Hayden in the 100 (12.63) and the 200 (24.90) with Makayla Jackson winning the 100 hurdles (15.27) and the 300 hurdles (45.04).

Other first-place finishes for Newton were provided by Duronte Carter in the boys 300 hurdles (39.36). Taking the top of the podium for Rockdale were Jhibri Greer in the 110 hurdles (15.01) for the boys with Antwonette Thomas winning the 800 (2:22.62) and the 1,600 (5:34.84).

Alcovy had its share of winners also, with Khorvon Nelson winning the 200 (22.23) and the 400 (48.47). Alcovy also won the girls 4x100 in 48.22 seconds and the boys 4x400 with a time of 3:21.30.

Running for the Alcovy girls were Bryce Wilis, Ashley Williams, Brianna Archer and Laniece Dennis. Taking the gold for the Alcovy boys in the relay race were Marcus Beasley, Brian Francois, Rontavious Banks, and Nelson.

Archer came close to winning the 400 but lost to Luella's Courtney Keaton by less than 1/1000 of a second as both girls had an official time of 59.39 seconds. Dennis had a pair of runner-up finishes, coming in behind the region winner in the 100 (12.79) and 200 (25.87). Coming in second for Alcovy were Alexis Emanuel in the 800 (2:25.10) and the girls 4x400 (Ayanna Martin, Archer, Williams and Emanuel) with a time of 4:04.96.

Rockdale also had several second-place finishes: Malik Dawkins in the 400 (49.16), Tyree Newton in the 3,200 (10:16.21), Greer in the 300 hurdles (39.63) and the boys 4x400 relay team (Marc Griffiths, Joseph Wright, Chaz Mapp and TJ Warren) with a time of 3:21.41.

Finishing second as well was Newton's girls 4x100 relay team (Mercedes Booker, Hayden, Jazmene Jackson and Shay Lawrence) with a time of 49.04.

In the Region 8-AAAA meet at Lanier, the Eastside boys made a good run to place eight top-four finishes to take second overall. Even though Eastside scored 115 points, it was not enough to surpass Lanier's 153.

The Eastside girls finished just one point behind Chestatee in the runner-up battle. The Lanier girls won with 132 points, followed by Chestatee with 75 and Eastside with 74 for third place.

Winning region for the Eastside boys were Jamal Hardge in the 400 (50.83), Landon Moore in the 800 (2:05.15) and Lorenzo James in the 300 hurdles (41.30). Coming in second place for the boys was Darvelle Smith in the 110 hurdles (15.55).

Dallas Worthy was Eastside's only girls champion, winning the 400 with a time of 57.78 with Breanna Thornton coming in second at 1:00.25. Also coming in second in other runs were Corin Stokes (100 -- 12.32) and Rhodelle Lewis (800 -- 2:29.20).

Heritage and Salem did notperform well as a team, but several individuals made their marks. One athlete that stood above the rest was Heritage's Mia McLean, who won the girls triple jump with a distance of 34-feet, 6.50 inches. Coming in second for Heritage was Dayo Akendeli in the boys long jump (21-09.75) with Salem's Quintis Maddox taking second in the discus with a throw of 149-03.

The top four finishers in each region championship still have a chance to advance to the state meet by finishing in the top four of their sectional on April 27. Newton will travel Mill Creek with Eastside going to Carrollton and Salem and Heritage traveling to Greenbrier High School in Grovetown.