Orange County

Tigers take it down to the wire for Big Eight boys' track title

Orange's Jamar Davis (right) battles with Chapel Hill's Dylan Blankenship (left) to the line in the 1,600 relay at the Big Eight track championships on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at Durham County Stadium. Davis finished .02 seconds ahead for the win.
Orange's Jamar Davis (right) battles with Chapel Hill's Dylan Blankenship (left) to the line in the 1,600 relay at the Big Eight track championships on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at Durham County Stadium. Davis finished .02 seconds ahead for the win.

The boys' title in the Big Eight track championship at Durham County Stadium came down to the last race on Wednesday.

Chapel Hill won with 159 points, edging Cedar Ridge, which finished with 155 points.

Southern and Oxford Webb finished tied for third with 78 points, while Northwood was fifth (64), Orange came in sixth (46) and Northern Vance was seventh (7).

Two points separated Chapel Hill and Cedar Ridge heading into the 1,600 relay. And that race turned out to be the race of the day but not between Chapel Hill and Cedar Ridge but between Chapel Hill and Orange. Cedar Ridge, which had been a contender early in the race, fell out of contention when the Red Wolves' second runner stumbled and fell.

Orange won by .02 seconds as Jamar Davis outleaned Chapel Hill's Dylan Blankenship at the line.

"I just pushed as hard as I could," Davis said. "That's only the second time we've run this relay."

Tyrese Britten, Cameron Michalsku and Paul Ruback joined Davis to finish in 3:33.97. Chapel Hill's time was 3:33.97 and Cedar Ridge came back and finished third (3:41.96).

Chapel Hill won the 3,200 relay in 8:58.46 with Ben Campbell, Jacob Meredith-Andrews, Jason Dadolf and Tyler Yandrofski. Cedar Ridge took second (9:13.26) and Northwood was third (9:21.99).

Blankenship won the 300 hurdles in 40.43 for Chapel Hill, while Marcus McDonald was second (40.50) for Southern and Cedar Ridge' Edgar Galvin took third (43.13). McDonald stumbled over the final hurdle and almost collided with Blankenship, who was able to surge ahead for the victory.

Tyler Yandrofski of Chapel Hill won the 800 in 2:02.44, while Southern's Nybrion Jackson was second (2:08.10) and Silas Buckner of Chapel Hill took third (2:08.91).

Earlier, Buckner edged Ian Elliott of Cedar Ridge by .17 seconds at the line in the 1,600 as he finished in 4:30.39. Elliott's time was 4:30.56. Chapel Hill's Nat Romaine took third in that race (4:52.29).

"This race I was just really going for place," Buckner said. "Ian has been a big rival for the last year. We did basically the same last year in this meet. This race put me in a good spot heading into regionals."

Elliott said it was a fun race despite losing at the line.

"I do this every race," Elliott said. "I go out too fast. But Silas is a very good runner. I love racing against him because he just pushes me. We seem to trade wins. A couple of weeks I won. This week he won. He did the exact same thing to me last year, beat me in the last 50 meters."

Elliott had another close finish in the 3,200 as he came in behind winner Ryan Combs of Chapel Hill, who finished in 9:55.10. Elliott's time was 9:59.94, while James Clabo of Chapel Hill was third (10:15.36).

Chapel Hill's Jacob Hickerson won the pole vault by clearing 11-0, while Cedar Ridge's Ben Pardue came in second (10-0) and Brian Richardson of Chapel Hill took third (9-0).

McDonald won the 110 hurdles in 14.76 for Southern, while Zin Maung of Cedar Ridge was second (16.03) and Alex Hudson of Oxford Webb took third (16.21).

"It's a good mark going into the next few weeks," McDonald said. "But I've got to go faster if I want to win at states. Every track season I start off slow but I get better and better and my times keep dropping. Hopefully, I can keep getting better."

Bobby Fuller of Southern won the shot put with a toss of 42-3, while Nathaniel Lewis of Cedar Ridge was second (40-1.50) and Red Wolves' teammate John Williams took third (38-6.50).

Davis won the long jump with a leap of 20-10.50 for Orange, while McDonald was second by a half inch (20-10) for the Spartans and Edgar Galvin of Cedar Ridge took third (20-9).

Davis and McDonald also battled it out in the triple jump with Davis again taking the top spot with an effort of 45-6, while McDonald posted a 41-3.75. Blankenship was third (41-3.50) for Chapel Hill.

Josh-Lester Harris of Oxford Webb won the 100 in 10.87, edging Northwood's Cameron Council (10:93), while Harris' teammate Khiliel Bullock took third (11.41) for the Warriors. Harris also won the 200 in 22.60 as Davis was second (23.04) for Orange and Northwood's Seth Baldwin took third (23.26).

Oxford Webb won the 400 relay in 43.50 with Javonte Shoffner, Bullock, Daramin Phraim and Harris. Cedar Ridge was second (44.27) and Northwood took third (44.51).

Cedar Ridge won the 800 relay in 1:31.39 with Cory McIntyre, Marvin Jones, Edgar Galvan and Seth Baldwin. Chapel Hill took second (1:36.43) and Northwood came in third (1:36.87).

Jones won the high jump for Cedar Ridge, clearing 6-4. Blankenship took second (6-2) for the Tigers, while teammate Shakeem Nickens was third (5-8).

Council gave Northwood a victory in the 400 in 48.91, while Southern's Khaleb McRae was second (49.22) and Spartan teammate Montrel Cooper was third (49.40).

Oxford Webb's Andrew Rice won the discus with a toss of 140-7, while Seth McKee of Cedar Ridge was second (130-11) and Northwood's Sergei Johnson was third (117-6).

Joe Johnson: 919-419-6889, @HPreps