The Cleveland Naval Jr. ROTC Commanders are no strangers to postseason success in boys’ track and field.
The Commanders have been the resident Class 2 dynasty in the state as they are coming off back to back state championships and state titles in three of the past six years.
Several top athletes from those back-to-back state championship teams have graduated and have moved on to the collegiate level. A new wave of Commanders has picked up the mantle and the winning as continued as they won the Class 2 District 2 championship last Saturday at Principia. The Commanders outdistanced the field with 158 points.
Cleveland will take athletes in 11 individual events and three relays to the upcoming sectional meet at Park Hills Central on Saturday. Sophomore Sidney Clay won both the 110-meter high hurdles and 300-meter intermediate hurdles. Junior Daunte Ferrell was first in the 100-meter dash and junior Dealo McGee was strong in the field events, winning the high jump, triple jump and shot put while finishing third in the long jump.
Sophomore Mark Hutchinson won the 3,200-meter run and second in the 800-meter run. Senior Mark Harris was second in the 200 and third in the 400. The Commanders also finished first in the 4x100- and 4x800-meter relays and second in the 4x200.
Other top boys’ sectional qualifiers include Brentwood’s Josh Danfort, who finished first in the 200-meter dash. Brentwood also qualified all three of its sprint relays as the Eagles finished first in the 4x200 and 4x400 while finishing second in the 4x100.
Host Principia had four district champions in Alphince Baraza in the 400, Nathan Babcock in the 800, Bramwell Havi in the 1,600 and Howard Jones in the long jump.
On the girls’ side, the top individual performer of the meet was senior Busiwa Asinga of Principia, who won three individual events. Asinga won the 100 in 12.22 seconds, the 200 in 25.35 and the 300-meter low hurdles in 45.34.
Senior McKinlee Morris of Crossroads continued her excellence in the throwing events by winning the shot put and discus. She won the shot put with a heave of 40 feet, 1 inch and the discus with a throw of 117 feet, 8 inches. Valley Park had two district champions in Kaylah Petty in the 400 and Jilane Pederson in the high jump. Collegiate School of Medicine and Bioscience also came away with the victory in the 4x400. Brentwood’s Anna Wagner also qualified in the long jump and was a part of the Eagles 4x100 and 4x200-meter relay teams that finished second and qualified for sectionals.