POWDER SPRINGS — Cobb County qualified its usual large contingent of athletes for the track and field state championships following Saturday’s Class AAAAAAA sectional at McEachern.
The sectional featured athletes from Regions 1, 2, 3 and 5.
The top eight finishers in each event qualified for the state meet, which will be held Thursday through Saturday at McEachern.
Among the boys, host McEachern qualified 19 athletes and relay teams, with rival Marietta advancing a total of 18.
Harrison will send a sizable contingent of 13, while Campbell (6), Walton (4), Pebblebrook (3), Hillgrove (2) and North Cobb (1) were the other local teams sending athletes to the state meet.
Marietta and Hillgrove will return the largest Cobb girls teams back to the state meet, each sending a total of 16 athletes and relay teams.
McEachern qualified 13 girls, while Walton will send 10. Harrison, Campbell and Pebblebrook are bringing nine each.
Harrison’s Sully Shelton was the lone multiple event winner among the boys athletes, winning both the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs. Shelton won the 1,600 with a time of 4 minutes, 21.61 seconds and the 3,200 at 9:28.18, finishing ahead of Marietta’s Kamari Miller in both races.
McEachern teammates Kara Stewart and Trinity Stephens joined Hillgrove’s Lizzy Smith as the girls athletes who won multiple events.
Stewart swept the hurdles, winning the 100 (14.49) and 300 (45.44), while Stephens claimed the shot put (39 feet, 8 inches) and discus (116-3). Smith was the winner of both distance events — the 1,600 (5:16.60) and 3,200 (11:20.14).
McEachern won three boys events — Ethan Sinon the discus (162-7), Jens Rueckert the high jump (6-6) and the Indians emerging victorious in the 1,600 relay (3:19.00).
Cobb teams also won the other two relay events, with Pebblebrook taking the 400 relay (41.61) and Harrison the 3,200 relay (8:09.95).
Marietta, Hillgrove, Walton and Campbell each won two individual girls events.
Marietta got wins from McKenzie Walker in the 100 (11.97) as well as from its 3,200 relay (9:44.82), while Hillgrove took a victory with Ryann Richards in the long jump (17-10¾) as well as winning the 400 relay (47.00). Walton was boosted by Rachel Valentine’s victory in the pole vault (11-0) and Amara Onyeukwo’s win in the 400 (55.56), and Campbell was victorious with Mekenze Kelly in the 200 (24.09) as well as in the 1,600 relay (3:51.22).
Harrison’s Riley Perlakowski was the only other local victor with her win in the 800 (2:09.07).