B-UHS sends 18 boys to state track and field meet this Friday and Saturday

BUCKHANNON – A squad of 18 Buccaneers is headed to Charleston on Friday and Saturday for the West Virginia AAA State Track and Field Championships, held annually at Laidley Field.

Taiwo Thropp leads a strong contingent of Buckhannon-Upshur runners, who as a team are looking to finish among the top five in the state. Thropp qualified in the 100, 200 and 400-meter dashes – winning a regional title in the 400 – and will be in the mix for high point honors in Charleston.

The 100-meter dash is especially tight, with 10 runners within half a second of each other – and four, including Thropp, turning in sub-11-second times. Among Thropp’s primary competitors in both the 100 and 200 will be Keyshawn Robinson of Jefferson and Lucas Anderson of Bridgeport.

In the 400-meter dash, Thropp and B-U teammate Shawn Blandino will both look to finish near the top of the crop after going one-two at regionals. Robinson has turned in the top time this year at 48.11, but Thropp and Blandino are among a tight group rounding out the top six.

In the 800-meter run, B-U’s Jordan Gillum will look to return to the form he showed last year when he set the school record at the state meet. He has work to do, though, with 10 runners all going under 2 minutes this season.

The Bucs will also compete in all five relay events. The quartet of Thropp, Blandino, Gillum and Reis Leonard will be battling for a state title in the 4×400 after winning regionals with a time of 3:30.43.

B-U’s 4×800 team of Gillum, Leonard, Jack Waggy and Randy Beckner will also be in the mix for a high finish, although the title could be out of reach with University having clocked a sub-8 minute time this year.

Also qualifying for the state meet were B-U’s shuttle hurdles team (Leonard, Carter Zuliani, Zade Woody and Chase Hackett, third place at regionals), 4×200 team (Blandino, Hackett, Bryson Johnston and Timothy Snyder, fourth place at regionals) and 4×100 team (Snyder, Blandino, Johnston and Savion Farmer, fifth place at regionals).

In the field events, B-U’s Dirk Riley captured the regional title in the discus with a throw of 137-7, which would place him just outside the top 10 statewide. Ely Cain and Malaki Williams finished in third and fourth in the high jump at regionals, clearing six feet, but both will likely need to go even higher to score at states.

Landen Zirkle rounds out the B-U competitors. He’ll compete in the pole vault after qualifying for states with a silver medal finish at the regional meet, clearing 10-6.

B-UHS 2023 Boys AAA State Track Meet Qualifiers:

  • Randy Beckner: 4×800
  • Shawn Blandino: 400, 4×100, 4×200, 4×400
  • Ely Cain: High Jump
  • Savion Farmer: 4×100
  • Jordan Gillum: 800, 4×400, 4×800
  • Chase Hackett: 4×200, Shuttles
  • Bryson Johnston: 4X100, 4X200
  • Reis Leonard: 4×400, 4×800, Shuttles
  • Landon Marple: 4×100, 4Xx200
  • Devin Phillips: Shuttles
  • Dirk Riley: Discus
  • Timothy Snyder: 4×100, 4×200
  • Taiwo Babawale-Thropp: 100, 200, 400, 4×400
  • Jack Waggy: 4×800
  • Malaki Williams: High Jump
  • Zade Woody:  Shuttles
  • Landen Zirkle:  Pole Vault
  • Carter Zuliani: Shuttles

News Feed

Subscribe to remove popups, or just enjoy this free story and support our local businesses!