Truman High School's boys track and field team certainly proved that quality is much more important than quantity.



Coach Craig Lewis' Patriots went to the Class 4 Missouri State High School Championships this past weekend at Lincoln University’s Dwight T. Reed Stadium with five runners and came back with what is believed to be the first state team trophy in school history.

Truman High School's boys track and field team certainly proved that quality is much more important than quantity.

Coach Craig Lewis' Patriots went to the Class 4 Missouri State High School Championships this past weekend at Lincoln University’s Dwight T. Reed Stadium with five runners and came back with what is believed to be the first state team trophy in school history.

Each of the runners scored points and the Patriots wound up tying Christian Brothers College High School of St. Louis for third place with 35 points.

“And get this,” Lewis said, shaking his head, “they had to win the last race, the 1,600 relay, to tie us, and they did. But that's all right. I'm so proud of these guys. I can't even tell you how proud I am of them. I'm stoked!”

Senior Roy Bay finished second in the 100 (11.04) and 200 meters (21.90) and his strong anchor leg helped the Patriots finish in fourth place in the 400 relay. Junior Cole Rockhold was third in the 1,600 Friday and was edged at the finish line by Chris Mooneyham (9:06.8 to 9:07) for second place in the 3,200 Saturday.

Demetric Dinwiddie, Alex Davis and Ben Sander joined Bay on the fourth-place 400 relay team.

“Before we came down here, we talked about the chance of bringing home a trophy, but no one mentioned it once we got here,” Lewis said. “They were too busy concentrating on their events.”

Before he knew Truman had claimed a third-place state trophy, Bay expressed disappointment in his performance.

“I came down here to win three events – the 100, 200 and the 4-by-100,” Bay said, “and I'm disappointed I didn't. This (individual) disappointment will fuel me this summer to work even harder to get ready to college.

“But I am proud of the points we scored. We did a lot for a team that just brought five runners.”

Rockhold said the state trophy eased his disappointment.

“I was able to compete against some great competition, and I am so surprised and thrilled that we got a third-place tie as a team with just five guys,” Rockhold said. “In the 3,200, I gave it everything I had and the kid edged me at the end.

“I can take a lot of pride in competing against (Blue Springs sophomore standout) Stephen (Mugeche, who was one place behind Rockhold in the 1,600 and 3,200) and Simon (Belete, a Blue Springs senior).

“They are class individuals who bring out the best in me. I am so happy that they got second place as a team. They deserve it.”

Wildcats coach Joe Cusack also praised the Patriots.

“What about Coach Lewis and those Patriots?” Cusack said as he congratulated members of the Truman team. “With all the talented down, here and to just bring five guys and get a state trophy is just amazing. People are going to be talking about what Truman did for a long time!”

n Fort Osage's Austin Regier rebounded from what he called one of the most disappointing performances of his career to a stellar personal-best 6-foot-, 4-inch effort in the high jump to take third place.

“I didn't do anything in the triple jump on Friday – I was 12th – and I was so disappointed that I called my mom and my man, D'Vante (Mosby, a teammate on the Fort Osage basketball team) and had a long talk with them,” Regier said.

“They told me to keep the faith, and I did. I got out my Bible and started reading Deuteronomy and really digging into the scripture. It helped and I finished my high school career with one of my best performances.”

n Regier's teammate Elijah McGill experienced a bittersweet Saturday as he thought for a moment that he had won the long jump. But he actually tied Blue Springs' Donte Watkins, and Watkins won the first-place medal when a previous jump was used as the basis to determine first place.

“He got me,” McGill said, “but I'm a junior and this is going to make me want it even more next year. I'm really happy with my jumps today. I just wish I could have gotten that first-place medal. But congrats to Donte, he's a class act.”

McGill and Regier helped the Indians finish 15th as a team with 14 points.

n William Chrisman earned three all-state honors. DaVante Wilkerson took fifth in the 100 (11.20) and he and his brother Dalvin helped the 400 relay take fifth (43.01) and the 800 relay finish sixth (1:29.19). David Daniel and Javaughn Chambers helped in the 400 and Chambers and Sam Michell ran in the 800. The Bears finished 22nd in the team standings with 11 points.

n Raytown’s 800 relay team of Lorenzo Wade, Reese Fisher, Shannon Rollins and Markel Robinson also earned all-state honors with a fourth-place finish in 1:28.75. Raytown South’s Justice Burks won a state title in the 110 hurdles in 14.64 seconds.

n Oak Grove junior Skyler Hulse managed a big smile after his seventh-place finish in the Class 3 boys 110 hurdles.

“I didn't finish last, so I can't complain,” said Hulse, who looks more like a defensive end than a hurdler. “I put on 40 pounds for football and still managed to come down here and get a medal. I have a lot to smile about.”

Oak Grove's 400 relay team finished in third place.