With St. James moving up to Class 4A this season, Alexus Alston had her work cut out in an attempt to defend her 400-meter hurdles Lower State title.
On Saturday, she proved she was up to the challenge and more.
Not only did the senior defend that title, she earned another in the 100-meter hurdles at York Comprehensive High.
“She was hungry and just got it done today,” Sharks coach Jacob Scheuer said.
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Alston was one of two local performers to bring home multiple Lower State titles as Carvers Bay’s Melissa Jefferson took first in the 100- and 200-meter dashes in Class 2A at Woodland High.
Several others earned one. That list includes her teammate, Trey Myers, who topped the podium in the 400-meter hurdles, an event he came within .06 seconds of winning a state title in last season while St. James was in Class AAA.
“Looking into next week with Trey in the 400 hurdles – he missed it by a little bit last year – so he’s been focused all year long,” Scheuer said of Myers, who finished third in the Lower State in the event last year. “He’s ranked first going into the 400-meter hurdles heading into [the state championship next week] and he’s ready to bring home the ring.”
The Waccamaw girls had two individual Lower State winners – Annabelle Scully (3,200 meters) and Briley Arnold (400-meter hurdles) – en route to a second-place finish. The Warriors’ boys squad – led by Jackson Junkins (400-meter Lower State champ) – finished third.
“Today I was real pleased with the effort they put forth,” Waccamaw coach Bill Peterman said. “Our kids who didn’t qualify, a lot of them set season bests and personal records. It was a highly competitive meet and we knew going into 3A it would be.”
The Warriors have added incentive as they are performing in honor of their late teammate, Jamisa Lewis, who died in a vehicle accident March 4.
“It’s been a tough season with losing one of our teammates that qualified last year,” Peterman said. “I’m real proud of our boys and girls.”
At Bishop England, Loris’ Teeyana Long (high jump) and Andrew Wilson (shot put) earned Lower State titles.
Individuals: Kayla Watkins (Carolina Forest) high jump, third; long jump, fourth; Kishanda Adams (Conway) shot put, fifth.
Individuals: Raiqwon O’Neal (Conway) shot put, fourth.
Individuals: Felicity Weber (St. James) pole vault, third; Emily Barbosa (North Myrtle Beach) pole vault, fifth; Alexus Alston (St. James) 100m hurdles, first; 400m hurdles, first; Ka’Mauri Humes (St. James) 400m, third; 200m, seventh.
Relay teams: North Myrtle Beach (3,200m, fifth; 400m, eighth).
Individuals: Chris Anderson (St. James) pole vault, seventh; Trey Myers (St. James) 110m hurdles, third; 400m hurdles, first;
Individuals: Annabelle Scully (Waccamaw) 3,200m, first; 800m, second; Lillian Eddy (Waccamaw) 3,200m, third; Briely Arnold (Waccamaw) 100m hurdles, third; 400m hurdles, first; Teeyana Long (Loris) high jump, first; Ava Markham (Waccamaw) high jump, third; Morgan Seganti (Waccamaw) pole vault, fourth; Aleah Bromell (Waccamaw) shot put, second; Keioshya Davis (Loris) shot put, fourth; Keioshya Davis (Loris), fourth; Keioshya Davis (Loris), third.
Relay teams: Loris (400m, second); Waccamaw (3,200m, first).
Individuals: Jackson Junkins (Waccamaw) 400m, first; 200m, fourth; pole vault, second; Tyfiq James (Waccamaw) 800m, second; Perrin Jones (Waccamaw) 1,600m, second; 3,200m, third; Reginald Point (Georgetown) high jump, fourth; Andrew Wilson (Loris) shot put, first; Calvin Johnson (Georgetown) long jump, second.
Relay teams: Waccamaw (3,200m, first).
Individuals: Melissa Jefferson (Carvers Bay) 100m, first; 200, second.
Relay teams: Carvers Bay (400m, fourth; 1,600m, fourth).
Individuals: Toronto King (Carvers Bay) 100m, second; long jump, second; Norman Goss (Carvers Bay) discus, third; Emmanuel Tatum (Carvers Bay) shot put, fourth; Daronn Clark (Carvers Bay) triple jump, fourth.
Relay teams: Carvers Bay (400m, first).
Individuals: Autumn Slobodiak (Green Sea Floyds) 100m hurdles, fourth; 3,200m, second; Brianna Ellis (Green Sea Floyds) 800m, fourth; Zian Johnson (Green Sea Floyds) triple jump, fourth.
Relay teams: .Green Sea Floyds (3,200m, third).