By Jano Tantongco
The Huntington Blue Devils scooped up this year’s Suffolk League III team championship, and earned three individual gold medals, this past Sunday.
Huntington senior Kyree Johnson snagged all three of the gold medals, which he earned in the 55-meter dash (which he finished in 6.65 seconds), 300-meter dash (35.45 seconds) and long jump (21-11.00 feet).
The Blue Devils, overall, accumulated 79 points, beating 10 other schools, including second place Half Hollow Hills High School West, which scored 58 points.
Head coach of Huntington’s team, Ron Wilson, said Johnson is the top 300-meter dash runner in the state, and stands at fourth in the overall national rankings for the event. He’s also number three in the state for the 55-meter dash, and holds fast at number nine nationally.
“We decided to triple Kyree Johnson in three events, so that gave us a bit of a head up on everyone else,” Wilson said. “He’s doing a phenomenal job. He’s coming along strong. He’s one of the top kids in the country.”
Headed into the overall county championships next weekend, Wilson is confident his other trump card, Lawrence Leake, will give the team a leg up, adding that Leake is currently ranked number one in the country in the 600-meter dash.
“This year it’s him and Lawrence actually who are shining brightly,” Wilson said.
Also during the league championships, which were held at Suffolk County Community College’s Brentwood campus, Huntington senior Shane McGuire placed fourth in the 1,000-meter run.
Wilson also gave kudos to eighth grader Anthony Joseph, of Finley Middle School, who assisted in the 4x400-meter relay.
Also, Wilson said hurdler Brian Pierre helped bring home some extra points in the 55-meter hurdle. Freshman Jaylen Bush just missed the trials to qualify for the finals, but Wilson said he earned a top spot in the freshmen 55-meter hurdle on Friday during the Suffolk freshmen and sophomore championships.
As for Huntington’s shot put throwers, Clay Jamison threw 44 feet to take home third, while Sam Bergman threw 45 feet for fourth.
With the Suffolk championships fast approaching, Wilson added that the team has traditionally competed in the championship’s small school division, but due to increased enrollment, Huntington is now set to join the large school division.
“We’re going to use these two weeks to prepare for the county championship,” Wilson said. “We’re going to try and give it all we got.”
The Suffolk championships are slated to be held Feb. 4-5 at Suffolk Community College’s Brentwood campus.