CHARLESTON — Oak Hill High senior Michael Beasley gave his team a strong start Friday in the annual state track and field championship meet, an event which was plagued by a lightning delay of around four hours.
Beasley captured runner-up finishes in two field events — the long jump and the high jump — as Oak Hill was second in the team rankings to Fairmont Senior after day one.
First up, Beasley was second in the long jump, an event in which he was the defending state champion. He led for most of the way with a top leap of 22 feet, 7 3/4 inches, but Roane County's Jordan Coon uncorked a winning jump of 23-1 in his final attempt to dash Beasley's hopes for a repeat.
Beasley later finished second in the high jump with a clearance of 6-2. Winner Michael Garrett, of North Marion, cleared 6-6.
"I'm kinda disappointed; it wasn't what I wanted," Beasley said after the high jump. "But at the end of the day, I still got a second-place medal, got a medal for Oak Hill, and that's all that really matters."
Beasley still has two more opportunities at gold today as the meet continues at UC Stadium's Laidley Field. He runs in the 400-meter dash at 11:25 a.m. and the 300 hurdles at 1 p.m.
He's ranked second in the hurdles race, with a time of 41.85 seconds to Coon's 41.04.
"I'm gonna try my hardest," Beasley said of the 300 hurdles. "That's the same guy that beat me in the long jump."
Also Friday, Oak Hill finished fifth in both the Class AA girls and boys 4x800 relays. The Red Devils girls unit of Samiah Lynch, Courtney Smith, Morgan Wills and Kiya Babkirk turned in a time of 10:13.46, while the OHHS boys quartet of Seth Crosier, Mason Harp, Ian Bibb and Dylan Massey was clocked in 8:31.49.
Woodrow Wilson senior Chris Barbera raced to a 9:11.41 win in the 3200, the final event of Friday's extra-long first day. George Washington's Jacob Birurakis (9:15.05) was second.
The meet resumed this morning with an adjusted schedule to accommodate field events which couldn't be concluded Friday night.
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