Tiger Sharks to send 14 tracksters to state meet

Fourteen athletes from Port St. Joe qualified at the 1A Region 1 meet on Wednesday, May 4, for the upcoming state track and field meet.

At the regionals, Coach Keion McNair’s boys finished in fifth place with 59 points, and the Tiger Shark girls took fourth place with 78 points. Pensacola Christian’s boys won gold with 88 points, while the Maclay girls ran away with the title, earning 156.5 points.

The top Tiger Shark finishers at regionals, which were held at Bishop Snyder High School in Jacksonville, now head to the 1A state finals on Wednesday, May 11, at the University of Florida’s James G. Pressly Stadium. 

The Port St. Joe boys who will compete in Gainesville at the state meet, and how they finished at regionals, are: 

  • Parker Hicks, second place on the 4×400 relay team, which posted a time of 3:32, and sixth place in the 800-meter run, with a time of 2:06. 
  • Donnell Hill, second place on the 4×400 relay team 
  • Darian Mills, first place in both the 110-meter hurdles, with a 14.29 time, and in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 38.58; second place on the 4×400 relay team 
  • Daniel Nguyen, second on the 4×400 relay team, third in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 42.39 
  • D.J. Oliver, second in shot put, with throw of 46 feet 10.75 inches 
  • Justice Peacock, third in javelin, with throw of 150 feet 5 inches 
  • In addition, Devin Cuttino will go as an alternate for the 4×400 relay team 

St. Joe girls who qualified for the state finals: 

  • Kristen Bouington, personal best times of 2:43 in the 800-meter run and 6:17 in the 1600-meter run 
  • Madelyn Gortemoller, second in 800-meter run with a 2.21 time 
  • Jayla Hill, fourth in triple jump with a leap of 33 feet 1 inch 
  • Damari Johnson, first in both the 100-meter hurdles, with a 16.30 time, and triple jump with a leap of 38 feet 10.5 inches, third in 300-meter hurdles with a 51.24 time, fifth in long jump with a leap of 15 feet 3.5 inches 
  • Jae Lenox, second in long jump with a leap of 16 feet 1.75 inches 
  • Alexis Price, third in discus with a throw of 95 feet 8 inches 
  • Lily Wockenfuss, fourth in pole vault with a showing of 10 feet 10 inches 

The top two finishers in each event at regionals automatically qualify for the state finals, with the next best eight times or distances from the four regions being selected. McNair had expected “about 10,” so he was pleased with the final selections. 

Admission to the state finals is $11 in advance and $14 at the gate. The cost for parking is included in the admission price.

Meet the Editor

Wendy Weitzel, The Star’s digital editor, joined the news outlet in August 2021, as a reporter covering primarily Gulf County.

Prior to then, she interned for Oklahoma-based news wire service Gaylord News and for Oklahoma City-based online newspaper NonDoc.com during her four years at the University of Oklahoma, from which she graduated in May with degrees in online journalism and political science.

While at OU, Weitzel was selected as Carnegie-Knight News21 Investigative Fellow among 30 top journalism students from around the country. She also was senior editor managing a 12-person newsroom in coordination with Oklahoma Watch, a non-profit news organization in eastern Oklahoma.

Wendy Weitzel The Star Digital Editor

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