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Temperatures rise, records fall at D-B's Pre-Prom meet

Pat Kenney • Apr 11, 2017 at 12:11 AM

KINGSPORT — Dobyns-Bennett’s Pre-Prom Invitational track meet was postponed last Friday because of frigid conditions. On Monday, Mother Nature turned up the heat and so did the competitors as they raced around the Dan Crowe/Tom Coughenour Track.

The Lady Indians got things going by breaking the school record by more than 30 seconds in the 4x1,600-meter relay. Emma Russum, Sophia Neglia, Ashton Hagood and Sasha Neglia blistered the field, crossing the finish line with a winning time of 21:51.23.

“We all knew the splits we had to run to set the record,” said Sophia Neglia, a senior. “It was really exciting to see how everyone went after it.”

In the sprints, Britney Griffith of D-B swept the 100 (12.67), 200 (26.98) and 400 meters (61.93).

“We’ve been having some hard workouts lately and that has really helped a lot,” said Griffith, who tore her ACL just a little over a year ago and has come back strong. “I’ve just tried to keep a positive mind-set and run as hard as I can.”

The Indians’ Bryce Barrett, the defending state champion in the 400 meters, ran a personal best in the 100 (10.85) and came back with a winning time of 22.13 in the 200.

“With the warmer weather today we all knew it would be a good day for fast sprint times,” said Barrett, who has signed to run track at Nebraska. “I really wanted to get a PR in the 200 but came up a little short.

“But these two events are building blocks for my 400,” he added. “The 100 helps with my coming out of the blocks and the 200 gives me work in the curves. All of that helps me to improve my times in the 400.”

Another runner building toward better performances is Daniel Boone standout Ben Varghese. He won the 1,600 (4:36.44) and came back with a strong 1:59.70 in his victory in the 800.

“I go into every race trying to do my best,” said Varghese, an East Tennessee State commit. “Right now I’m using these early-season races to build up to better times as we get into postseason. I have to run smart. There is still a long journey ahead.”

Among other multiple winners in the meet was Science Hill’s T.J. Patton, who won the long jump (21-1/2), 110 hurdles (15.28) and 300 hurdles (41.60).

D-B’s Khyra Gambrell captured both the shot put (31-3) and discus (96-6). Science Hill’s Georgia Caudle won the 100 hurdles (17.13) and the 300 hurdles (53.44).

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