West girls win third-straight region title
April 28, 2010
By BJ Corbitt
After three region titles in three seasons, you might think West Forsyth’s girls would be sad to say goodbye to Region 7-AAA in the fall.
But distance coach Clayton Tillery says leaving the region won’t be nearly as tough as losing his seniors — particularly the kids who have been with him since their freshman years, when he coached at South Forsyth and West Forsyth wasn’t even open.
“I’ve been with some of these kids for four years, so that’s the first time in about three years that I’ve had to actually lose a kid that’s been with me the whole time, so that’ll be a little rough banquet coming up here before long,” Tillery said.
On Tuesday, the Lady Wolverines used their veteran leadership to wrangle a third straight region title, winning the 7-AAA meet in their own stadium.
With 164 team points, West Forsyth finished well clear of second place Flowery Branch (112). Creekview (79) and Lambert (62.5) were third and fourth in the standings.
“[The seniors have] left a mark that I think in the future other kids are going to look to and want to achieve. Winning two region titles you’re doing something. We’ve won three in a row, and to win it over Flowery Branch three times, Gainesville’s in there, Creekview’s coming on strong. There was a good showing by some individuals from Lambert in this meet. Its not easy to win, so it’s fun to win with these kids,” Tillery said.
West Forsyth won five of six field events on the first day of the meet. The Lady Wolverines were less dominant in the track events Tuesday, winning two of nine.
West Forsyth’s track victories came from Kat Gibson in the 800 meter run (2:20.94) and as a team in the 4x400 meter relay (4:11.20).
But as Tillery — who shares coaching duties on a staff of seven — pointed out, it’s not just first place finishes that count.
“It’s not so much winning the events that we had as some of the seconds and thirds. ... You start doing things like that, it starts making huge differences,” he said.
“I didn’t account for many points [as a coach], but my other coaches accounted for a lot of points. I try to surround myself with good coaches, and we have good athletes, and good stuff will happen.”
Senior Gibson also took second in the 400 meter dash, while senior teammate Alex Shook was second in the 100 meter hurdles and 300 meter hurdles. Wolverine senior Missy Smith was second in the 200 meter run, while the hosts finished second as a team in the 4x100 meter relay.
Flowery Branch junior Erika Rucker took home first place finishes in both the 400 meters (:57.92) and 200 meters (:26.29).
“It was a good day. I just wish I could have done better because I’m hurt ... I strained my hamstring twice. I just got hurt last week and I just got better today, so I’ve just been resting [leading up to the meet],” Rucker said.
Lambert’s Allie Schaich owned the individual distance runs on the day, winning in won the 1,600 meter (5:10.22) and 3,200 meter (11:12.94) runs.
The day was windy and overcast throughout, and the meet was halted for an hour when a brief hailstorm descended on the stadium.
The girls state meet will take place in Albany May 6-8.