RADFORD — Appalachia’s Forrest Stuart wasn’t entirely worry free as he wrapped up his high school athletic career in Saturday’s VHSL Group A state track and field championships at Radford University.
But he got by with a little help from his friends.
Inspired by advice from his Bulldogs buddies, Stuart rocketed off into the VHSL record books by winning his second consecutive state title in the 110-meter hurdles.
Stuart’s repeat marked the first time a Region D boys hurdler won the event in back-to-back seasons since Powell Valley’s Julius Jones did so in 1998 and 1999. Jones’ senior season state record 14.02 lives on, although Stuart’s winning time of 14.44 Saturday did equal Jones’ 1998 winning performance.
Stuart arrived in Radford to defend his state title knowing he was seeded behind Manassas Park’s Tyree Durr. In qualifying Saturday, Stuart added Rappahannock County’s Tavon Andrade and Stonewall Jackson’s John Michael Pirtle to the short list of rivals after the Bulldogs hurdler won his heat but clocked a fourth-best time of 15.37.
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