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Maggotty High striving for excellence in track and field

While the eyes of many would have been focused on hosts St Elizabeth Technical High School as they emerged victors across both genders at the County of Cornwall Athletics Association Western Boys' and Girls' Championships on Thursday, April 29, many other smaller victories were achieved on the day.

Among those that may have gone unnoticed were the achievements of a small contingent from Maggotty High School.

Living up to their school motto of “Striving for excellence through hard work and discipline,” the female team of 14 athletes amassed 106.5 points for fifth place. This is no small achievement considering the other track and field giants present in the west.

Top performances came from Jade Jones and Shanniel Graham with quinella finishes in both the Class One 800m and 1500m. A third gold medal was achieved in the medley relay as they ran away victors to defend their medley relay title from last year. Other outstanding performances came from Daviel Alcott, who as second in the Class Two 200m and fourth in the 100m; Ocelia Jones in the open 400m and the 4x400 relays team which garnered silver.

On the boys' side their performance was even more impressive. Reminiscent of brave King Leonidas of Sparta and his courageous stand against the Persian army in 480 BC at the battle of Thermopylae (immortalised by the movie 300), the small army of four athletes managed to place sixth overall, scoring a whopping 55 points. This they managed to achieve without scoring any points in either the field events or relays.

Young Class Three sprinter Zachary Wallace was outstanding in copping the 200m/400m double in respectable times of 23.11 seconds and 51.10 seconds, respectively. Charehon Connally, also in Class Three, was himself a double medallist with gold and silver in the middle distance events, as was his teammate Yoshane Bowen with double bronze in the same two events. Senior athlete Dilan Rhoden, while not being able to climb the podium, contributed nine points to the cause with fourth- and fifth-place finishes in the Class One sprints with times of 10.95 and 22.65 seconds.

Under the guidance of Coach Terone Miller, the team has put together a series of strong performances all season and now turn their focus to the upcoming ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys' and Girls' Championships. In reflecting on the team's achievement, Coach Miller cited discipline as the key ingredient in the contributing factors to their success. When asked about his team's chances at Champs, he said he wants to make between four and five finals across both male and female sections and once they make the finals anything can happen on the day.

In weighing in on the success as well, Principal Sean Graham highlighted the resilience the team has shown in the current crisis and their determination to overcome against the odds. Despite lacking key resources, particularly a track to train on, the school has placed sports at the forefront of its operations as it is critical to the life of the school and to the personal development of the students.

“To understand life you have to be in competition because life is competitive and one has to learn to understand sportsmanship as well as how to handle victory and defeat,” Principal Graham stated.

With only two outgoing seniors, certainly the sky is the limit for this team from St Elizabeth. Judging by their Western Champs results, it would be foolhardy to underestimate them at Champs starting tomorrow.

Article by the Oberser

Monday, May 10, 2021

By Steve Cole Observer writer


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