After finishing second in the City League meet May 13, the Centennial High School girls track and field team was intent on making a strong showing in the Division I district 3 meet May 20, 21 and last Saturday at Dublin Coffman.

After finishing second in the City League meet May 13, the Centennial High School girls track and field team was intent on making a strong showing in the Division I district 3 meet May 20, 21 and last Saturday at Dublin Coffman.

The Stars did so in a way that has been a rarity for the program: With their sprinters.

Known for years as one of the City's strongest distance programs, Centennial advanced its 400-meter relay to the regional, which began last Wednesday and and will conclude Friday at Pickerington North.

At district last Saturday, freshmen Armaanii Howard and Tanesha Williams and sophomores Nyesha Baskerville and Jameela Meacham finished third in 50.97 seconds.

"Our relay team is a new set of people this year, with all sophomores and freshmen," Meacham said. "People are probably like, 'Who's that?' Centennial's not known for anything."

Beechcroft, Brookhaven and Northland qualified the largest contingents to the Division I regional among City programs. Eastmoor, Independence, Marion-Franklin and Walnut Ridge also advanced athletes in Division I.

In district 3, the Scots' Kaitlin Dunson qualified in the 100 hurdles (fourth, 16.09) and 300 hurdles (third, 47.92) and her brother, Kollin, won the 110 hurdles (14.99) and 300 hurdles (38.84).

"It means a lot to me because I learned a lot from my older brother Alan," Kaitlin said of her older sibling, who was a state qualifier in the 110 and 300 hurdles in 2005. "That's not the best that I can do yet."

Walnut Ridge's boys and girls advanced in a combined five individual events and one relay to the regional, where the top four in each event will qualify for the state meet June 5-6 at Ohio State.

For the boys team, the 400 relay of Donavan Gwynn, Kelvin Nyeduala, Marsean Ross and Kollin Dunson was third in 43.59 and LaVelle Stearns was fourth in the discus (140 feet).

"With our (400 relay), we finally got healthy," coach Byron Mattox said. "Donavan Gwynn had been out for a couple weeks. He had a hamstring problem so we were hoping just to be able to run him. We were able to run him because we were in this district (which held running preliminaries May 21).

"Kollin is peaking at the right time. He's never run under 40 before this in the 300s. He's continually getting better. He's working hard."

•TENNIS CHAMPS -- According to Centennial coach Barb Stevenson, junior Will Loudermilk was the first tennis player from the school to advance past the sectional in more than a decade.

Loudermilk, who was unseeded for the Division I sectional at Upper Arlington but finished third, lost to Dublin Jerome sophomore Sean Stein 6-3, 6-0 in his district opener last Friday at Hilliard Davidson.

He also led the Stars to the City team title May 21 with a 4-1 win over West.

Loudermilk beat Christopher Myles 6-0, 6-2 at first singles, Andy Delgado defeated Sothorn Phin 6-4, 1-6, 6-2 at second singles and Nathan Rideout beat Santiago Farias 6-3, 4-6, 7-5 at third singles. Chris Upchurch and Preston Eberlyn beat Phanny Koheum and James Wright 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 at first doubles and West's Syphannaret Prum and Jacob Ferrero beat Adam Keethler and Anand Mehta 6-0, 6-2 at second doubles.

"This was a great event for us," Stars coach Barb Stevenson said. "An hour into the match, I thought we were going to lose. All of a sudden it clicked in. It was really exciting because it was so close."

At a glance

Below are regional qualifiers for City League boys and girls track and field teams with district event, place and time/distance/height:


Centennial -- Girls (district 3): 400 relay (third, 50.97)

Eastmoor -- Girls (district 1): Imani Chandler, 100 (second, 12.69); 400 relay (second, 49.24); 800 relay (second, 1:44.0)

Independence -- Boys (district 3): Sam Smith, 100 (fourth, 11.36)

Marion-Franklin -- Boys (district 1): 800 relay (fourth, 1:33.62); Girls (district 2): Ki'Lesia Perry, 100 hurdles (fourth, 15.52)

Walnut Ridge -- Boys (district 3): Kollin Dunson, 110 hurdles (first, 14.99), 300 hurdles (first, 38.84); LaVelle Stearns, discus (fourth, 140-0); 400 relay (third, 43.59); Girls (district 3): Asia Bange, 100 (third, 13.05); Kaitlin Dunson, 100 hurdles (fourth, 16.09), 300 hurdles (third, 47.92); Chanae Reed, shot put (third, 36-7)


East -- Boys (district 2): Patrick Jones, discus (fourth, 136-7); James Swanson, 400 (first, 49.16); 800 relay (fourth, 1:30.76)

Eastmoor -- Boys (district 2): Darius Chandler, 1,600 (fourth, 4:41.15); Touche' Hopkins, 200 (fourth, 22.84); Sam Lucas, 800 (third, 2:00.4); Steven Mitchell, 110 hurdles (first, 14.96), 300 hurdles (fourth, 40.54); Victor Rodriguez, discus (second, 143-0), shot put (fourth, 49-6 1/2); Brad Smith, long jump (third, 20-2 3/4); Ryan Wilborn, discus (first, 145-7), shot put (first, 55-5); 3,200 relay (second, 8:21.39);

Linden-McKinley -- Boys (district 1): Donald Anderson, long jump (third, 20-2 3/4); Najee Blackwell, high jump (fourth, 5-8); Chajaz Davis, 100 (second, 11.52); Shawn Gatewood, shot put (fourth, 42-2 1/2); Michael Gibson, long jump (fourth, 19-8 1/2); Rashawn Jones, 400 (third, 50.55); Edmond Ziegler, high jump (third, 5-8); 800 relay (second, 1:32.38); 1,600 relay (second, 3:30.52); 3,200 relay (third, 8:44.88); Girls (district 1): 800 relay (third, 1:50.86)

Mifflin -- Boys (district 1): Jorell Davis, 400 (first, 50.3)

South -- Boys (district 1): Shamaal Russell, 100 (first, 11.5), 200 (first, 23.22); Devanate' Sherwood, 100 (fourth, 11.65); Girls (district 1): Keyvona Waddell, discus (fourth, 94-9)


Africentric -- Boys (district 2): Deshon Best, 110 hurdles (first, 15.61); Victor Graham, 100 (second, 11.41), 200 (second, 23.02); Todd Johnson, 300 hurdles (third, 42.87); Jahleel Mullins, shot put (third, 46-5 1/2); Jerrime Saunders, 200 (third, 23.97); Solomon Wheat, 100 (third, 11.56); 800 relay (first, 1:30.24); Girls: Brein Babbs, shot put (fourth, 34-9); CharVonna Chandler, shot put (third, 35-3); Shardai Morrison-Fountain, 100 (first, 12.62), 200 (second, 26.32), long jump (second, 16-5 1/2); Kristin Miller, 400 (fourth, 1:02.01); Ayris Rigsbee, 300 hurdles (fourth, 48.25); Brittani Thomas, 100 (third, 13.03); 400 relay (second, 51.65); 1,600 relay (fourth, 4:12.88)