May 15—The Buffs are coming home as state champions.
McAlester's boys 4x200-meter relay team took home the top prize in the state at the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activities Association Class 5A State Track Meet on Saturday, with multiple Buffs in other events placing and medaling.
Buffs sprinting coach Michelle Williams said she was beyond thrilled for her group of runners.
"Handoffs is the key in any relays that you do," Williams said. "(The seniors) are leaving the underclassmen something to look forward to."
Seniors Gavin Johnson, Caleb Taylor, and Grant Owens alongside sophomore Erik McCarty make up the 4x200-meter relay team, and spoke with excited breaths after earning gold medals.
"We feel like state champions," Taylor smiled.
"It's been something we've been trying to fight for since the beginning of football season," McCarty added.
The Buffs recorded a time of 1:28.77 seconds — earning them the fastest time and shattering the previous McAlester record by approximately four seconds. But as excited as the team was before the race, Johnson and Owens admitted there were some butterflies as they got into position.
"I thought I was going to throw up," Johnson laughed.
"But after you take off, your legs take over," Owens said.
Williams said the event is a huge accomplishment for McAlester, and will inspire runners for years to come.
"It sets a high precedent. When they see 'state champ'...everybody will be wanting to be on that relay team," Williams said.
Here is the complete list of results for McAlester at the OSSAA Class 5A State Track Meet:
BOYS HIGH JUMP
Jaxon Tobey, sixth, 6-02.00
BOYS LONG JUMP
Erik McCarty, eighth, 20-03.50
BOYS SHOT PUT
Chase Faber, fifth, 48-00.00
BOYS 4x200-METER RELAY
Grant Owens, Erik McCarty, Caleb Taylor, Gavin Jonson, first, 1:28.77
BOYS 4x100-METER RELAY
Grant Owens, Jaxon Walters, Erik McCarty, Gavin Johnson, second, 42.46
BOYS 100-METER DASH
Gavin Johnson, second, 10.75
This post will be updated.
Contact Derek Hatridge at firstname.lastname@example.org.