High jumper Layson Giles led the small delegation of Jackson County Comprehensive High School boys’ track and field members who qualified to compete in the Class AAA sectional meet this Saturday at Southeast Bulloch High School near Statesboro.
His 6-foot, 4-inch high jump was good enough to finish first in the region 8-AAA championships held at East Jackson Comprehensive High School Saturday. He beat out Deonte Smith (6-02) of Franklin County. His jump improved his Jackson County championship finish (6-0).
Joining Giles at the sectional meet are hurdler Hunter Ellingood and runner Todd Woodring, who each notched third-place finishes to qualify for the sectional meet.
Ellingood earned a 17.54 time in the 110 hurdles and Woodring finished the 400-meter dash in 50.24.
Woodring finished third in a very tight race with two Oconee County runners, Wake Roberds (49.44) and Matt Gehr (49.94).
Woodring, a sophomore, was recently praised by coach David Darling, in particular, as a dogged worker who has achieved because of the time he puts into his training.
“He works his legs off and deserves the credit he gets,” Darling said.
Nick Stovall also advanced to the sectional round after finishing fourth in the 300 hurdles (43.94).
Darling predicted Stovall would “surprise” at the region meet after his second place finish at the county championship. Stovall’s time during that race was 44.19.
Overall, Darling acknowledged the youth of a team in progress and predicted next year would yield even more positive results for the squad.
“We knew this was going to be a building year with our youth and we are pleased with the progress they have shown,” boys’ coach David Darling said, pointing to the results of the Jackson County championships.