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High Schools

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Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette
Homestead’s Monte Conte, right, takes the lead with North Side’s Rigel Jaquish close behind during the 3200-meter ‘final B’ run at the 63rd Annual North Side Relays on Saturday.

Spartans cruise in North Side Relays

– For the outdoor track season, the North Side Relays is just a start. But what a start it can be to take home some hardware, especially the team championship? And Homestead did that for the third time in six years.

The North Side Relays is one of the longest running track events in the state, having been started in 1951.

“The North Side Relays, what a great place?” Homestead coach Jeff Livensparger said. “It has always been the true start to the track season.

“It is really big for the kids because they have worked hard as far as training. Like all teams, they have to deal with the adversity of who’s coming back. To be able to say we worked hard, but how do we compare to somebody else, and what can we do?”

The Spartans won the team title with 147 points, followed by Northrop’s 107. Defending champion Wayne came in third with 88.

Homestead’s Jordan Davis won the high points award for sprints/hurdles.

“I stressed to some of the seniors this morning that this is our last go-around at the North Side Relays,” Davis said. “It is a great feeling, and we are letting teams know that they have to come get us because we are putting up points and putting up fast times, and we are sending out the message that it is all fun and games but on the track we can bring it too. It looks good on paper, and it looks good on the track also.”

Davis won the 110-meter hurdles (15.24) and 300-meter hurdles (39.50) and was a part of the winning 800 relay team (1:32.64). He finished sixth in the high jump (5 feet, 10 inches).

“It’s all mental at that point,” Davis said of his workload during a meet. “After the first race, coaches always tell me it is from the shoulders up. From the head down is there, but it is all mental from that point. We all get tired at times, I know that, but these guys are counting on me to bring points in for the team. It’s all about the team, that’s what motivates me.”

Homestead did it as it usually does, with depth.

“Depth is big, especially when it is going to be an ‘A’ and a ‘B’ group and both are scored equally,” Livensparger said. “We have just lived on that for a long time, having that depth. They enjoy the depth, but they want to see how they can do head-to-head with some folks.”

Also winning events for the Spartans were Brayden Law (3,200, 9:35.06), Skyler Mikesell (1,600, 4:37.44), 400 relay team (43.72) and 3,200 relay team (8:32.99).

“From the slowest kid to the fastest person, we have confidence in everybody,” Davis said. “To be a well-rounded team is good. All of us can do just about everything.”

Also winning high points awards were Wayne’s Jari Dada (field events), and Indianapolis North Central’s Solomon Rice (distance). Dada won the shot put (52-7) and discus (152-4). Rice won three relay events and was second in the 3,200.

gjones@jg.net

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