Athlete of the Year
The most grueling boys’ events at the annual Spring Fling are the three track distance races, because all are run on the same day. Baylor junior Simon Holden didn’t just compete in the 3200-, 1600- and 800-meter events, he pulled away to win all three, becoming only the second local runner ever to accomplish that feat.
After winning the 3200 (9:38.43) in the morning, Holden returned to the track that afternoon with temperatures in the mid-90s to win the 1600 (4:25.35) and the 800 (1:55.38), then finished his day with a strong anchor leg in the 4x400 relay, passing two runners in that race to help Baylor finish fourth.
“It was pretty tough, that’s for sure,” said Holden, who admitted he would check over his shoulder in the first two races to make sure he was far enough ahead to conserve energy for the final run. “I felt strong the whole way and just ran my pace. It was a really special feeling to win all three.”
Coach of the Year
With a strong senior class in Cotton’s 20th season as Bradley Central’s coach, the Bears took first place in both their Class AAA sub-sectional and sectional meets and won the Bradley County championship. At the prestigious Vol Classic, Bradley Central finished 18th out of 50 schools and placed second in the Mid-South Classic and third in the Riverdale Invitational this season.
The Bears had 13 athletes qualify for the Class AAA state meet, and triple jumper James Stovall won a championship. Justin Houston finished third in the 300-meter hurdles. Bradley Central was the highest-scoring AAA team at the state meet.
“We’ll miss those seniors that helped us the last few years, and I’m very proud of the way they developed into top-notch competitors,” Cotton said. “We would’ve liked to finish higher in the state meet, but everybody that doesn’t finish first is going to say that.”
He was third in the Class AAA state 300-meter hurdles and qualified also in the 110 hurdles.
He won the Division II state title in the 110 hurdles and qualified for the 300 hurdles as well.
He ran the second leg of the A/AA state-title 4x400 relay and the state-qualifying 4x200.
He won the Division II state discus title with a personal-best throw and was third in the shot put.
He won the AAA state title with a school-record triple jump and qualified also in the high jump.
He finished second in the Class A/AA state long jump and was one of the area’s top sprinters.
He did not lose to a local sprinter all season and finished fourth in the Class A/AA state 200.
He ran the anchor leg of the state-winning 4x400 relay team and helped the 4x200 qualify also.
Jamaal Calvin McCallie Junior
Keionta Davis Red Bank Senior
Rue Goldston Bradley Central Senior
Clarencio Holmes Hixson Senior
Matthew Jones McCallie Sophomore
Matthew Oellerich Baylor Senior
Ramsay Ritchie McCallie Sophomore
Reggie Upshaw Baylor Junior
Patrick Bryant Baylor Senior
T.J. Davis Ooltewah Senior
Chaz Hawkins Signal Mountain Sophomore
Justin Johnson Hixson Junior
Harold Smith Bradley Central Sophomore
Alex Sumida Baylor Freshman
Gil Walton McCallie Senior
LaDarious Watkins East Hamilton Junior
Teams of the Year
McCallie: The Blue Tornado qualified 17 athletes for the Division II state meet and were the top local finishers in any classification.
Bradley Central: The Bears had 13 athletes qualify for the Class AAA state meet, with one winning a championship.
Baylor: With 11 athletes qualified for the state meet, the Red Raiders were the second-highest finishing team in all classes.