Price, Godwin named state’s top track and field athletes

MARTINSBURG – James Jett and Chelsea Carrier-Eades left track and field high school legacies at Jefferson and Buckhannon-Upshur, respectively, that might have appeared unreachable when each graduated and grew into All-Americans many times over at West Virginia University.

Dante Price and Emily Godwin created their own standout identities at Jefferson and Buckhannon-Upshur and are now freshmen just beginning their collegiate careers – Price at Virginia Tech and Godwin at North Carolina.

Price and Godwin followed in their predecessors’ footprints – Price as a sprinter, like Jett, and Godwin as a hurdler and jumper, like Carrier-Eades.

Like their predecessors, Price and Godwin won a collection of individual gold medals throughout their prep careers.

Like their predecessors, Price and Godwin are now winners of the Ray McCoy Awards as the top track and field athletes in the state for 2013, as awarded by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association.

“We were just passed the torch at our given times,” Price said.

And both Price and Godwin also shared one more common trait – they supplanted the 2012 winners after both finished second in last year’s balloting behind Cabell Midland’s Jacob Burcham, a three-time winner, and St. Marys’ Maggie Drazba, both distance standouts.

Other voting finalists were Dylan Rich of Buffalo, Abe Miranar of Bridgeport and Matthew Brafford of George Washington for boys, and University’s Amelia Paladino, Frankfort’s Bria Welker, and Washington’s Devyn Hosby for girls.

Price won the state 100 and 200-meter dashes for the third straight year, added a 400-meter crown while competing in the event for the first time, and notched a fourth gold medal in the 4×200 relay on his way to claiming high-point honors in the Class AAA state meet as Jefferson won its fourth straight team title. A year earlier, he anchored the state meet record-setting 4×100 relay unit. Career-wise, he captured seven individual golds after two second places as a freshman.

Godwin claimed Class AAA high-point meet honors for the team champions after winning both the 100 and 300-meter hurdles plus the high jump and long jump crowns. A year earlier, she also scored a high 40 points by winning all four events, including record-setting meet marks in both hurdle races.

In the eyes of both of their coaches, it was a team-first approach that was simply golden for Price and Godwin.