TRACK: Smith, Towns win individual state titles for Gordon Lee

Dylan Smith broke a long-standing school record and set a personal-best of 4:42.31 to win the state title in the 1600 on Thursday. (Photo by Deadra Ragsdale)

The first day of the GHSA Boys’ State Track Meet in Jefferson turned out to be a day to remember for the Gordon Lee Trojans.

Despite competing in just three events, Gordon Lee made the most of its brief appearance, collecting two individual state championships and seeing all four of its athletes place and score points in the Class A public school classification.

Junior distance runners Dylan Smith not only won the 1600, he did so in a personal-best time of 4:42.31, edging out Baconton’s Bryton Wenzel by 0.31. The time broke Smith’s old personal-best by 20 seconds and broke a Gordon Lee school record that had stood for well over 20 years.

Junior Garret McAllister was eighth overall with a time of 5:09.10.

Just over two hours later, freshman Andrew Towns cleared 10-feet to win the pole vault title by six inches over Turner County’s Mikevion Hall.

It was the second pole vault state title for Gordon Lee in the past four years. Derek Roberts won the 2010 Class A title in the event, setting a school and state-record with a mark of 14-6.

Corey Jewell failed to record a height in the pole vault, but the senior picked up fifth-place points in the shot put with a mark of 43-2.

Smith and Towns' state titles gives Gordon Lee High School five individual state championship this school year to go with four team state championships. The Trojans had three wrestlers, Will Jacks, Jonathan Ragsdale, and Alex Spires, win state titles earlier this year.

Ridgeland had two athletes competing in the Class AAAA meet.

Junior Jermane Conyers finished 14th in the shot put (44-3¼), while senior Tyrell Smith was 15th overall in the discus (114-4). Neither qualified for the finals in their respective event.