Tilghman Boys Win 29th State Title
"A lot of guys across the board stepped up big for us," Paducah Tilghman coach Randy Wyatt said. "We have high expectations, and we met them. I couldn't be more proud."
The Blue Tornado trailed by eight points with three events remaining after Highlands took home a first place and a fifth place in the 3,200 Meter Run.
"My stomach got in a knot. We knew we still had a chance, though," said Wyatt regarding his reaction following the 3,200.
Despite not being seeded, Tilghman's Tyler Scarbrough took home third place and six points in the discus throw, putting the Blue Tornado two points behind with two events to go.
The Tilghman senior foursome of Nick Shelby, Bernard Williams, Marcus Corbett and Lenny Grace beat out Highlands in the 4x400 Meter Relay, tying things up with Highlands as the long jump results were being calculated.
"I told our kids at the beginning of the year that it would come down to the mile relay, and it pretty much did," Wyatt said. "That's the way to go out. Those seniors have won state as freshmen and now as seniors."
Pruitt's eighth place did it for Tilghman, giving the Blue Tornado the slimmest of victories.
Corbett paced the Blue Tornado, as he was a part of two relays that won championships and then winning another two as an individual. The senior took the 110 Meter Hurdles, and later won the 300 Meter Hurdles. His 4x200 Meter Relay Team- the same four guys who would later win the 4x400 - also took first.
"You can't ask for much more out of a senior," Wyatt said of Corbett.
Grace was right behind Corbett to finish second in the 110 Hurdles, and he also added a fifth place in the 400 Meter Dash.
Tilghman scored additional points from Pruitt in the triple jump (sixth), Decoven Grubbs in the triple jump (seventh), Malcom Corbett in the 300 Meter Hurdles (eighth) and Travis Meyers in the pole vault (fifth). The 4x100 Meter Relay team of Shelby, Williams, Montel Wiggins and Jayden Freeman took third.
As for the Lady Tornado, Aleja Grant capped off a fantastic Paducah Tilghman career with three top-five finishes in individual races - including second place in the 3,200 Meter Run with her time of 11:40.01.
She also had a third-place finish in the 800 Meter Run (2:19.93) and finished fourth in the 1,600 Meter Run at 5:08.67.
One of the best distance runners in the state, Grant will compete for Western Kentucky University next year.
"She went out there and gave it her best effort," Wyatt said. "She has been a strong fit for our program and has set a good example for our younger athletes."
The Lady Tornado also got points out of the 100 Meter Dash tandem of Balesha Watson and Tanaisha Jordan, who finished fourth and sixth, respectively. Tilghman's girls finished fifth overall.
Calloway County's Lily Lowe was the individual star of the day, both locally and statewide.
Not only did she win her third straight high jump state championship with a jump of 5-08, but she also won the long jump by jumping 17-02.25.
Two state championships weren't enough for the Lady Laker junior this year, as she added a third by winning the 300 Meter Hurdles with a time of 47.16 seconds.
"Once I won the other two events, I was hyped up for the hurdles," she said. "When it came to those last two hurdles, I was just pumped."
Lowe was the only girl to win three individual state championships at Friday's 2A meet.
"It's just crazy, I'm still trying to take it all in," Lowe said.
Class 2A Track and Field State Championships:
Boys 4x800 Meter Relay 6, Calloway County (Betts, Cooper, Bailey, Friedrich), 8:27.48.
Boys 110 Meter Hurdles 1, Marcus Corbett (Paducah Tilghman), 14.66. 2, Lenny Grace (Paducah Tilghman), 14.99.
Girls 100 Meter Dash 4, Valesha Watson (Paducah Tilghman), 12.89. 6, Tanaisha Jordan (Paducah Tilghman), 12.94.
Girls 4x200 Meter Relay 2, Paducah Tilghman (Donelson, Watson, Wood, Jordan), 1:44.78.
Boys 4x200 Meter Relay 1, Paducah Tilghman (Grace, Corbett, Shelby, Williams), 1:29.03.
Girls 1600 Meter Run 4, Aleja Grant (Paducah Tilghman), 5:08.67.
Boys Triple Jump 6, Phillip Pruitt (Paducah Tilghman), 41-04.00. 7, Decoven Grubbs (Paducah Tilghman), 41-02.75.
Girl High Jump 1, Lily Lowe (Calloway County), 5-08.
Boys 400 Meter Dash 2, Landon Holt (Caldwell County), 49.45. 5, Lenny Grace (Paducah Tilghman), 50.83.
Boys 4x100 Meter Relay 3, Paducah Tilghman (Shelby, Wiggins, Williams, Freeman), 44.06.
Girls 300 Meter Hurdles 1, Lily Lowe (Calloway County), 47.16.
Boys 300 Meter Hurdles 1, Marcus Corbett (Paducah Tilghman), 40.26. 8, Malcom Corbett (Paducah Tilghman), 42.84.
Girl Long Jump 1, Lily Lowe (Calloway County), 17-02.25.
Girls 800 Meter Run 3, Aleja Grant (Paducah Tilghman), 2:19.93.
Girls 3200 Meter Run 2, Aleja Grant (Paducah Tilghman), 11:40.01.
Boys Pole Vault 5, Travis Meyers (Paducah Tilghman), 12-06.00.
Boys Discus Throw 3, Tyler Scarbrough (Paducah Tilghman), 147-00.
Boys 4x400 Meter Relay 1, Paducah Tilghman (Shelby, Williams, Corbett, Grace), 3:25.91.
Boys Long Jump 8, Phillip Pruitt (Paducah Tilghman), 19-08.25
Girls Team Results: 1, North Oldham 96. 2, Lexington Catholic 73. 3, Boyle County 57. 4, Rockcastle County 41. 5, Paducah Tilghman 35. 9, Calloway County 30.
Boys Team Results: 1, Paducah Tilghman 81. 2, Highlands 80. 3, Lexington Catholic 66. 4, North Oldham 65. 5, Covington Catholic 56.