Low Turnout Hampers BHS Track Team

Brentwood's 400-meter relay team, shown in practice, is (from left) Corey Carroll, Justice Harris, Jacob Clay and Kaylon Jenkins.
Brentwood’s 400-meter relay team, shown in practice, is (from left) Justice Harris, Jacob Clay, Kaylon Jenkins and Corey Carroll.

But Rivera is having her best season ever

 
By Steve Bowman
Editor, The Brentwood Spirit
email: bowmansj@sbcglobal.net

It’s hard to quickly sum up how well the Brentwood High School track and field program is doing so far this season.

On one hand, there’s junior Sophia Rivera, who is having an incredible spring even by her own high standards. She has not only flawlessly defended her state titles in the shot put and discus but has thrown the javelin farther than any other high school girl in the U.S. for 2015.

Then there’s the rest of the team. With a few exceptions, the Eagles are having a lackluster season due mostly to a low turnout of about 15 students. The boys finished last in their own invitational on April 21, and the boys and girls together competed in only 13 of the 29 events.

Most of the members of the BHS boys track team are (from left) Corey Carroll, Brandon Gordan, Kaylon Jenkins, Justin Shipley, Justice Harris, Deshaun Johnson and Jacob Clay. (All photos by Steve Bowman)
After a recent practice, Brentwood’s male sprinters pose for a photo on the high jump pit. They are (from left) Corey Carroll, Brandon Gordan, Kaylon Jenkins, Justin Shipley, Justice Harris, Deshaun Johnson and Jacob Clay. (All photos by Steve Bowman)

Last weekend, with Rivera temporarily out of the lineup, the boys and girls together scored only four points at the Marion Freeman Invitational in Clayton, advancing one person to the finals.

It’s too bad the roster is so small, as Missouri recently went from four to five classes in track and field. Brentwood stayed in Class 2 but some of its toughest Class 2 competitors were moved up to Class 3. Before the season began, BHS assistant track and field coach Robert Findley thought the change could mean high state finishes for the Eagles. Then he saw the turnout.

“We just didn’t get the body of kids we thought we’d get,” said Findley. “It’s just commitment level.”

Best javelin throw of year in U.S.

Findley said the Missouri State High School Activities Association has added the javelin throw in 2015 and 2016 on a trial basis. Nobody is happier about that than Rivera, who started competing in the javelin on a club team in the fourth grade when she lived in New Jersey.

Local meets at which she has won the javelin, so far in 2015, include the Skippy Keefer Relays at John Burroughs and the Brentwood Invitational. At the Brentwood meet her throw of 175 feet and 10 inches is the best in the U.S. this year, and the fifth best of all time, among high school girls.

This spring she has also won the javelin at two prestigious national meets: the Kansas Relays at the University of Kansas and the 120-year-old Penn Relays at the University of Pennsylvania. At the Penn Relays, in Philadelphia, her throw of 169-6 set a meet record and beat 18 others from Pennsylvania, Utah and New Jersey. She was even named the high school female athlete of the meet.

To see a video interview of Rivera from the Penn Relays, click here.

Sophia Rivera was named the high school girl athlete of the meet at the Penn Relays in Philadelphia. (Photo courtesy of Michelle Hassemer)
Sophia Rivera was named the high school female athlete of the meet at the Penn Relays in Philadelphia. (Photo courtesy of Michelle Hassemer)

Jenkins leads sprinters

With Rivera out of town last weekend, Kaylon Jenkins was the only Eagle to qualify for finals at Clayton High School’s Marion Freeman Invitational. With an eighth place in the preliminaries of the 200-meter dash he just barely made the cut to the finals but didn’t medal.

Jenkins ran on the 800-meter relay team that missed qualifying for the finals by five-100ths of a second. His relay mates were Corey Carroll, Justice Harris and Jacob Clay.

“Kaylon is leading the pack right now,” said Findley, assessing his sprinters. “Justice Harris is coming along also. Clay has been kind of struggling but we still have time and we’re going to get it fixed.”

Kaylon Jenkins waits to receive the baton on the second leg of the 400 relay.
Kaylon Jenkins waits to receive the baton on the second leg of the 400 relay.
Ready to compete in the 400-meter relay at the Marion Freeman Invitational in Clayton on Friday are (from left) Corey Carroll, Kaylon Jenkins, Justice Harris and Jacob Clay.
Ready to compete in the 400-meter relay at the Marion Freeman Invitational in Clayton on Friday are (from left) Corey Carroll, Kaylon Jenkins, Justice Harris and Jacob Clay.

Silerio, Yancey help girls

Also with a ninth-place finish in the prelims, just missing the cut to the finals, was the girls 800 relay team of Leanna Baudendistel, Air’shay Lampkin, Adrienne Silerio and Alesha Williams.

“Adrienne is pretty much our most consistent runner,” said Findley. “Her best event is the 400. We look for her to do some good things.”

Another good finish in Clayton was Jill Yancey, who took ninth among 23 in the discus throw.

“Jill has improved in her discus,” said Findley. “She’s been throwing it 81 feet and we’re hoping to get her farther. She has a good chance of making it to Jeff City.”

Adrienne Silerio runs the final leg of the 400-meter relay at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Adrienne Silerio runs the final leg of the 400-meter relay at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Jill Yancey competes in the shot put at last year's Brentwood Invitational.
Jill Yancey competes in the shot put at last year’s Brentwood Invitational.

District this weekend

Brentwood competes in the Class 2 District 2 meet this weekend at Monroe City High School. The top four finishers in each event will advance to the Class 2 Sectional 1 meet next weekend at Central Park Hills. The top four at the sectional will go to state in Jefferson City on May 22-23. The only ones on the team who made it to state last year were Rivera in the shot put and discus throw and Clay in the 400 relay.

Teams in Brentwood’s district are Barat, Cleveland NJROTC, Elsberry, Louisiana, Mark Twain, McKinley Classical Leadership, Monroe City, Schuyler County, Scotland County, South Shelby and St. Louis Med/Bio Science.

Air'shay Lampkin runs in the 800-meter relay in Clayton on Saturday.
Air’shay Lampkin runs in the 800-meter relay in Clayton on Saturday.

BHS girls results, Brentwood Invitational, April 21

Girls team scores:
1. Trinity, 109 points
2. McKinley, 83
3. Brentwood, 77
4. Principia, 73
5. Kennedy, 71
6. Cleveland NJROTC, 39

Girls Discus Throw
1st, Sophia Rivera, 149 feet 9 inches
5th, Jill Yancey, 75-3
12th, Charity Wallace, 42-3
14th, Sotiria Karanikolas, 31-5

Girls shot put
1st, Rivera, 46 feet 10 inches
9th, Yancey, 24-5.5
13th, Karanikolas, 18-10.5
14th, Wallace, 16-11.5.

Girls javelin throw
1st, Rivera, 175-10
2nd, Yancey, 52-11
3rd, Karanikolas, 33-2
4th, Wallace, 26-7

Girls 100-meter dash
1st, Air’shay Lampkin, 13.6 seconds
6th, Leanna Baudendistel, 14.5

Girls 400-meter relay
3rd, Brentwood, 56.6 seconds

Girls 400-meter dash
3rd, Adrienne Silerio, 1 minute 9.2 seconds

Girls 200-meter dash
5th, Lampkin, 29.8 seconds

Leanna Baudendistel takes the baton from Alesha Williams in the 800 relay at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Leanna Baudendistel takes the baton from Alesha Williams in the 800 relay at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Alesha Williams (left) accelerates away from Air'shay Lampkins in the 400 relay.
Alesha Williams (left) accelerates away from Air’shay Lampkins in the 400 relay.

BHS boys results, Brentwood Invitational, April 21

Boys team scores:
1. Principia, 144 points
2. Trinity, 125
3. Cleveland NJROTC, 73
4. McKinley, 50
5. Kennedy, 36
6. Brentwood, 35

Boys 100-meter dash:
3rd, Kaylon Jenkins, 11.7 seconds
4th, Jacob Clay, 11.7
10th, Brandon Gordan, 12.4

Boys 1,600-meter relay
2nd, Brentwood, 56.6 seconds

Boys 400-meter relay
2nd, Brentwood, 46.2 seconds

Boys 800-meter relay
3rd, Brentwood, 1 minute 39.03 seconds

Boys 400-meter dash
8th, Brandon Gordan, 1 minute 9 seconds

Boys 200-meter dash
2nd, Jenkins, 23.6 seconds
8th, Justice Harris, 25.3

Corey Carroll carries the baton in the 800 relay on Saturday.
Corey Carroll carries the baton in the 800 relay on Saturday.
Deshaun Johnson at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Deshaun Johnson at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Justice Harris carries the baton in the 400-meter relay in Clayton.
Justice Harris carries the baton in the 400-meter relay in Clayton.

Marion Freeman Invitational, Clayton High School
Brentwood results, May 1-2

Boys 100-meter dash
14th out of 35, Kaylon Jenkins, 11.89 seconds
18th, Jacob Clay, 11.99

Boys 200-meter dash
8th out of 33, Jenkins, 23.39 seconds
18th, Justice Harris, 24.75

Boys 400-meter dash
26th out of 27, Brandon Gordan, 1 minute 7.56 seconds

300-meter hurdles
19th out of 21, Justin Shipley, 50.89 seconds

Boys 800-meter relay
9th out of 11, Corey Carroll, Harris, Clay, Jenkins, 1 minute 36.30 seconds

Boys 400-meter relay
11th out of 15, Carroll, Harris, Clay, Jenkins, 45.85 seconds

Freshman Brandon Gordan competed in the 400-meter run on Saturday in Clayton.
Freshman Brandon Gordan, shown here in practice, competed in the 400-meter run on Saturday in Clayton.
Jacob Clay (right) practices taking a baton from Kaylon Jenkins.
Jacob Clay (right) practices taking a baton from Kaylon Jenkins.

Girls discus throw
9th out of 23, Jill Yancey, 86 feet
23rd, Charity Wallace, 41-0

Girls shot put
16th out of 21, Yancey, 23 feet 5 inches

Girls 200-meter dash
16th out of 21, Adrienne Silerio, 30.28 seconds
20th, Leanna Baudendistel, 32.09

Girls 800-meter relay
9th out of 11, Baudendistel, Air’shay Lampkin, Silerio, Alesha Williams, 2 minutes 0.75 second

Girls 400-meter relay
12th out of 12, Silerio, Lampkin, Williams, Baudendistel, 56.78 seconds

For the complete results of the Marion Freeman Invitational, click here.

Charity Wallace watches the discus she has just thrown at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Charity Wallace watches the discus she has just thrown at the Marion Freeman Invitational.
Adrian Silerio pulls a tire to build leg strength at BHS.
Adrian Silerio pulls a tire to build leg strength at BHS.
Here's an uncropped version of the photo at the top of this page.
Here’s an uncropped version of the photo at the top of this page.

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