Grimes sur­prises the 500-me­ter field, him­self

The Washington Post Sunday - - ALLMETSPORTS.COM - VIR­GINIA 5A/6A IN­DOOR TRACK & FIELD CHAM­PI­ONSHIPS BY BRYAN BLACK hss@wash­post.com

hamp­ton, va. — Break­out per­for­mances and sur­prise results are an in­evitable treat at big track and field meets, and Free­domWood­bridge’s Igo Grimes pro­vided ex­actly that Saturday at the Boo Wil­liams Sport­splex.

The ju­nior ran the 500 me­ters in 1:04.44 to win the 6A boys’ ti­tle at the Vir­ginia 5A/6A in­door track and field cham­pi­onships. Even he couldn’t be­lieve it. Asked after­ward whether he ex­pected to win, he bluntly replied: “No.”

“Com­ing in, there were guys who had faster times than me,” Grimes said. “I came into the sea­son late be­cause of a ham­string in­jury. I just wasn’t fit. I wasn’t men­tally pre­pared.

“But this past week my coach has been killing me in prac­tice, so I was ready. I’m a 400 run­ner, so I was sur­prised I won. That ex­tra 100 me­ters puts a toll on your legs. You can’t breathe. That’s the thing.”

Grimes later added a sec­ond­place fin­ish in the 300 to cap his ban­ner day.

Lake Brad­dock, with 38.5 points, placed sec­ond in the 6A boys’ team com­pe­ti­tion but fin­ished well be­hind cham­pion Western Branch (81.5). Pa­triot fin­ished fifth with 25.

An­drew DelVec­chio of Lake Brad­dock got an un­ex­pected boost in the 1,000 me­ters when event fa­vorite Bran­don McGorty of Chan­tilly dropped out of the race. DelVec­chio took the ti­tle in 2:31.94.

“Bran­don’s such a good run­ner. I don’t think it really changed my game plan too much,” DelVec­chio said. “I was just think­ing I would try to run my race the whole time.

“But I know ev­ery­body was look­ing at each other like, ‘Here we go,’ ’cause Bran­don’s so good; he’s won like ev­ery mid­dle-dis­tance race the past three state meets. It was really cool to go out there and say, ‘All right, we’re run­ning for the state ti­tle. Let’s do it.’ ”

Ear­lier, McGorty eas­ily won the 1,600 in 4:13.31, break­ing his own meet record.

“My train­ing’s been a lit­tle off re­cently, and af­ter the first race I wasn’t feel­ing too good, so I de­cided not to run the sec­ond race,” McGorty said. “It was a tough de­ci­sion. You don’t want to throw away an op­por­tu­nity to win a state race.”

In the 3,200 me­ters, Oak­ton’s Ahmed Has­san ran 9:26.03 and like­wise won hand­ily.

“I’ve led in races like this be­fore but al­ways wound be­ing out­kicked,” Has­san said, em­pha­siz­ing that he wasn’t go­ing to let that hap­pen this time.

The Lake Brad­dock girls net­ted 55 points and also fin­ished run­ner-up to Western Branch (113), which claimed the 6A ti­tle. Os­bourn Park was fourth with 37.5 and Bat­tle­field fifth with 30.

Bat­tle­field earned that spot when its 4x400 re­lay team — Lau­ren Hoffman, Shannon Lee, Emily Wall, and Boatemaa Nyarko-Bren­tuo — won its race in 3:59.87.

Pa­triot’s Rachel McArthur blitzed the field in the girls’ 6A 1,000. She won by nearly 10 sec­onds, in 2:47.02 — a meet record and the third-best girls’ time in state his­tory in the event.

“I knew that if I ran the time that I can run that no one would be able to stick with me,” McArthur said.

With Dono­van Louis win­ning two events, Po­tomac had a chance to win the 5A boys’ ti­tle. But Bethel (52 points) snatched the crown by win­ning the 4x400 re­lay. Lee-Davis had 49.5 for sec­ond, and Po­tomac was third with 49.

Louis won the long jump by go­ing 23-101/2 and the 55 me­ters in 6.39.

Heather Holt led Mar­shall to a third-place fin­ish among 5A girls’ teams. Nanse­mond River won with 98.5 points, fol­lowed by Maury with 69.5 and Mar­shall with 44.

Holt was not chal­lenged in the 1,600 and won in 5:07.14. She faced stiffer com­pe­ti­tion in the 1,000 and used it to set a meet record, run­ning 2:57.81.

“Hav­ing a lot of the girls in front of me really helped pull me,” Holt said of the first few laps on the 200-me­ter track. “I feel like they really helped me a lot.”

NOLAN JEZ / MILESTAT.COM

Free­dom-Wood­bridge ju­nior Igo Grimes dis­tances him­self from the pack to win a 6A ti­tle in Hamp­ton.

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