Doddridge boys build on dynasty

Photo by Jordan Holland Doddridge County’s Leo Stinespring passes the baton to teammate Carter Lipscomb during the Class A state 4x400 relay final Saturday. The Bulldogs claimed their sixth team title in nine years.

CHARLESTON — After three straight years in third place, the Doddridge County boys are back on top.

The Bobby Burnside-coached Bulldogs edged runner-up Magnolia, 84.33-82, to win the Class A state track championship Saturday at UC Stadium. Doddridge went on a run of five straight state titles from 2011-15, but finished in third the last three seasons.

“We just wanted so bad to get back to the podium,” Burnside said. “The effort this weekend, overcoming some adversity, the effort, the heart, the striving to get every single point — we ended up winning by 2.33 points.

“It’s a wonderful accomplishment. For the boys team it’s the ninth title, and for our program, boys and girls together, it’s the 20th state title in track. It means a lot.”

Ravenswood twins Blake and Bryce Jarrell finished 1-2 in the high-point standings in single-A. Blake finished with 26 total points, led by a state title in the 1600 (4:31.38).

The Doddridge County boys finally broke through for their sixth Class A state title in nine years Saturday at Laidley Field. Bobby Burnside's Bulldogs had finished in third place three straight years after winning five consecutive titles.

He was also second in the 800 (2:02.58), third in the 3200 (9:52.85) and a member of the runner-up 4×800 relay team (8:21.10).

“I wasn’t really coming out here thinking high-point, but it’s pretty cool that I got it,” said Blake Jarrell. “I didn’t get what I wanted in the 800. I got second. Four by eight, we got second but we PR’d by 10 seconds, so we ran better than we thought we would. I’m glad that this happened for my last state track meet in high school.”

The Red Devils finished third in the team standings with 64 points. Webster County (52) was fourth and Ritchie County (51) rounded out the top five.

State champ Doddridge had four individual state title winners. Griffin Devericks won the long jump (20-11.25), Cole James threw 150-3 in the discus, Carter Lipscomb took gold in the 3200 (9:44.31) and Reese Burnside was victorious in the pole vault (14-0).

“We really aren’t that deep, but we are very good in some areas,” coach Burnside said. “We scored a lot of points in certain events. This was a total team effort.”

Lipscomb also was a runner-up in the 1600 (4:32.30). Devericks was third in the 300 hurdles (40.41) and Devin Farley scored a point in the discus (132-0) with a sixth-place finish. Gage Smith finished fourth in the 800 (2:03.78).

“There was a hunger and a desire,” coach Burnside said. “We had a lot of good meets this year but we also lost some. In the end, we won the big one and it took everything we had.”

Runner-up Magnolia got state titles from Pat Mirandy in the 400 (50.45) and Spencer Shepard in the 800 (2:00.82). Mirandy also was the runner-up in the 300 hurdles (40.12). Magnolia did work in the relays, placing second in the 4×100 (44.87), 4×200 (1:32.15) and 4×400 (3:35.84). Jakob Barrows picked up a third place finish in the discus (138-6), while Jason Beisel followed closely behind Mirandy in the 400 for a third-place finish (51.72).

Second only to his brother’s 26 points, Bryce Jarrell added 22 points for the Red Devils. Saturday, he came in third in the 800 (2:03.45) and 1600 (4:32.47). He also was the runner-up in the 3200 (9:44.51) on Friday.

Austin Garrett added a fourth-place finish in the 200 (23.00) and a fifth-place finish in the 400 (51.91). Deshone Cooper netted a third-place finish in the high jump (5-10).

The area had two other individual state champions Saturday. Ritchie County’s Gus Morrison took home gold in the 110 hurdles while Tyler Consolidated’s Spencer Corley won the high jump. Corley credited his barber, who is also his grandmother, for his success.

“I’d like to thank my grandma for giving me my haircut,” Corley laughed. “I get it before every single meet. And I thank God for everything I’ve been able to do.”

Corley went 6-4 in the high jump, falling short of his PR of 6-7, but the sophomore was thrilled to be going home a state champion.

“It’s a surreal feeling,” said Corley, who also was sixth in the 1600 (4:41.69). “I’m just blessed to get the opportunity to come out here and do my best.”

Morrison, who also grabbed fourth place in the 300 hurdles (41.32), ran the high hurdles in 15.56 for his team’s only state title of the day.

“It feels pretty great,” he said. “Probably by the fifth or sixth hurdle I started pulling ahead. I’ve been pushing all year for it.”

Ritchie’s Brandon Bowie took fifth in the discus (132-1), Jarett Allender was sixth in the 800 (2:04.43) and Kent Bee was fourth in the 3200 (10:11.25). Ritchie also nabbed fifth-place finishes in the 4×100 (45.48) and 4×200 (1:34.64) and was fourth in the 4×400 (3:39.52).

Joining Corley in the scoring column for the Silver Knights was Zack Placer, who was the runner-up in the 110 hurdles (15.80). Teammate Nathan Barker followed in third at 16.00, while Mark Rucker took home a third-place finish in the 100 (11.42). Destry Nelson placed sixth in the 400 (52.34) while the TCHS 4×100 relay team came in third at 44.94. The Knights also were fourth in the 4×400 (3:44.09) and secured seventh place as a team with 45 points.

Williamstown was right behind in eighth place with 42 points. The 4×400 relay team of Colin Hunkele, Dawson Reynolds, Mikey Bell and Kole Sutton walked away as state champions after a 3:31.75 effort.

Hunkele also was the runner-up in the 400 (51.11) and grabbed third place in the 200 (23.00). Sutton wasn’t far behind Hunkele in the 400, finishing fourth with a time of 51.89. The Yellowjackets’ 4×200 was third (1:32.60) and the 4×100 was fourth (45.00). Bradey Fayad (300 hurdles; 42.00) and Josh Chambers (3200; 10:17.21) tacked on sixth-place finishes.

Other local placers were St. Marys’ Isaak Mooney and Gilmer County’s Chase Steele.

Steele was the runner-up in the long jump at 20-7.5 and was fifth in the 200 (23.57) to give the Titans 10 points and a 12th-place finish as a team.

Mooney came in fourth in the long jump (20-0) and was fifth in the high jump (5-10). The Blue Devils placed 11th as a team with 12 total points.

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