MCHS boys’ track team shoots for first region championship
The Madison County High School boys’ track team offered a bold prediction to first-year coach Jamie Sims when the squad met prior to the start of the season.
“Our kids told me that I didn’t need to worry about being nervous as a new head coach and that they would win me a region title and make me region coach of the year,” Sims said.
While Sims dismisses the coach of the year talk, the region title prophecy may come true.
Following a regular season during which Madison County won two big invitational meet victories and a number of dual and tri-meets, the Red Raiders will gun for the program’s first-ever region title.
The two-day 8-AAAA meet starts next Wednesday (April 28) and concludes next Friday (April 30).
“We have a great opportunity for greatness and to win a region title,” said Sims, who believes the region meet will be the most anticipated in MCHS history. “I don’t think that has ever been done here at the high school.”
Sims said if his team continues to produce the results it did during the regular season — beating 32 teams in nine meets and losing to just four — it will be in contention for the title.
“It won’t be easy or given to us by any means,” Sims said. “We have a tough region and it will be a dog fight. But if everything goes the way it should go for us I think we have a big chance of bringing home a region championship.”
Sims believes there are several favorites to either win or score high at region.
Standout Jamal Cooper has had a prolific year in the long jump, 100 meters and 200 meters as well as running on the 4 x 100 meter & 4 x 400 meter relay teams.
Kendrick Butler has given Madison County consistent points in the triple jump, 300-meter hurdles, 100 meters and as a member of the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400-meter relay teams.
The same can be said for T.J. McGuire in the 110-meter hurdles, high jump and 300-meter hurdles and as a member of the 4 x 400- meter relay team.
Stan Maxwell, a junior, also highlights the team in the high jump and runs anchor on the 4 x 100-meter relay team. Sims also believes that Maxwell can finish in the top two or three in the region in the 400 meters.
Another favorite is Jeffery Hicks in the pole vault, while Sims said that Matt Dove has a chance to finish anywhere from second to fourth in the discus.
Last, but not least, Sims said is his sophomore distance running tandem of Corey and Codey Brackhage, who he said could be “a pleasant surprise” in the 800 meters and 1,600 meters at region.
Madison County finished off the regular season with a victory over Elbert County April 13, which means the team will have had a 15-day layoff when the region meet starts next Wednesday.
But Sims said the break is welcomed, giving his guys a chance to focus on small errors, conserve energy and heal any ailments. To that end, Sims is even arranging for short massage sessions for the team prior to the region meet to keep muscles loose.
“I think it would benefit our kids greatly,” said Sims, who noted that his wife is a licenses massage therapist.
Sims said the goal next week is to “show up and show out” for the school and community.
“I hope everything goes well," Sims said. "I am very nervous and anxious all at the same time.”