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Genuine track meet comes to King Field

Don’t be confused.

The Brookhaven/Cellular South Invitational isn’t a golf, tennis,basketball, baseball, or softball tournament. It is a genuine trackand field meet Friday, right here on King Field’s R.L. TherrellTrack.

For the first time in nearly 10 years, a full-scale track meetwill take place on the track which was resurfaced last summer.Field events start at 4:30. Running events begin at approximately5:30. The mile relay will take place around 8:30 p.m..

Brookhaven track coach Patrick Hardy is excited about thislong-awaited event. In most cases he would be dancing with joy.However, Hardy tore his Achilles tendon several weeks ago and heremains on crutches.

Hardy and assistant coach Rod Henderson have been lookingforward to this event for some time. They’ve had their team in onlytwo meets thus far.

“Individually, we are still trying to do well in all theevents,” said Hardy. He has several newcomers on the squad thisyear.

Expected to join Ole Brook in the competition are WilkinsonCounty, Tylertown and South Pike, plus a Brookhaven B-team.

For sure, track is a new event for most Brookhaven students towatch. In the past, they had to leave Lincoln County to see thePanthers and Lady Panthers compete.

All-state quarterback Jimmy Johns will lead the Ole Brook boys.He’s a busy, young man, running the 110-meter hurdles, the 4x100meter relay, plus throwing the shot put and the discus. Johns wonthe Class 4A state title in the 110 hurdles and discus lastMay.

Some more Ole Brook football players from the 2004 statechampionship team are making their presence felt this spring. Widereceiver Taurean Jones runs sprints and high jumps. His best jumpis about 6-4. Wide receiver Bud Chatman does the long jump, triplejump and first leg on 4×100 meters.

A newcomer, freshman Ronnell May, brings some blazing speed tothe program. Depending on the amount of hard work and dedication,May could become a premiere sprinter.

All-state defensive tackle Jessie Bowman throws the shotput forOle Brook. Two newcomers from the Mississippi School for the Arts,Nason Stephens and James Draper, run relays. Stephens was a majorcontributor to Ole Brook’s state playoff soccer team.

On the girls side, Tamara Stovall leads the Lady Panthers. Sheruns the 100 and 300 hurdles, and the relays. The top two sprintersare Joanna McDaniel and Davida Renfro.

Distance and middle distance specialists are Elizabeth MacMahon,an MSA product; and Alisha Ervin.

Yinessa Cacapit, an MSA rep, runs the 400 meters.

The lone senior team member for the Lady Panthers is Ivy Brownwho runs the sprints. “She runs anywhere I need her,” saidHardy.

In the field events, Nikki Byrd, Katie Mackabee and LarindaThomas are the leaders in discus and shot put. Byrd and Mackabeeare both BHS basketball team members.

Hardy wants to build track and field interest on the junior highlevel. Participation, lots of it, is a key to success on thevarsity level. Eventually, this could lead to another statechampionship for Ole Brook athletics.

Former resident bags baseball honor

Former Brookhaven resident Keifer Smith of Richland recently waslisted among the Top Performers of the Week by TheClarion-Ledger. Smith, a freshman, received the honor for hisoutstanding performance in two weekend games. He tripled twice,singled and doubled in the Rangers’ 17-4 win over St. Joseph. Healso doubled and hit an inside-the-park home run in the juniorvarsity’s game. A day earlier, March 11, Smith homered and singledfor JV in an 8-10 loss to Forest.

Keifer is the son of Ronnie Smith of Richland and Lisa Smith ofRidgeland. He is the grandson of Don and Dot Lewis of Brookhavenand Charles and Marjorie Smith of Wesson.

Golf notes: The recent one-man scramble at theBrookhaven Country Club produced three holes-in-one in just tworounds of golf. Local golfer/banker Owen Carty made his ace on the152-yard seventh hole. He was using a Titleist Pro-VI ball, and aCobra SST 8-iron.

Thankfully, Carty had witnesses. About a year earlier, he wasalone when he aced the same hole, this time from the black tee box,about 205 yards from the seventh hole. He was using a 5-metal atthat time.

Write to sports editor Tom Goetz, c/o The DAILY LEADER, P.O.BOX 551, Brookhaven, MS 39602 or e-mailsports@dailyleader.com