Hanahan Hawks capture fourth state title in track and field
The Hanahan High School boys’ track and field team captured the Class AAA state championship Saturday. It was the Hawks’ fourth state title since 2011, when their golden era began.
And there’s a good nucleus for next year, which could also be golden for the Hawks.
Junior sprinter Quincy Mitchell was awesome and eighth-grader Noah Ward, a Daniel Island resident, was impressive to lead the Hawks to a 97-68 victory over Broome Saturday at Spring Valley High School’s Harry Parone Stadium. Mitchell accounted for 30 ½ points while Ward accounted for 18.
Both will return next spring.
Will the Hawks be favorites to return to the top of the victory stand next May?
“It might be a little bit premature to talk about that,” Hanahan coach David Morbitzer said. “Every year, it’s just a matter of running, throwing and jumping to the best of your ability. I tell them to always give their best effort. If you do the work early, it pays off at the end of the season.”
Mitchell had a big day in the sprint events. He captured the 100-meter dash in 10.77 and followed that up with a victory in the 200-meter dash, turning on the afterburners to clock in at 21.44. He finished second in the 400-meter dash with a time of 48.69, which broke the school record, previously held by Sam Denmark. Throw in another gold medal as a member of the winning 4x100-meter relay and Mitchell accounted for 30 ½ points.
“Quincy and I both knew he had a full load this weekend,” Morbitzer said. “He did a phenomenal job. He was very business-like. He came out and ran his heart out.”
Ward, the eighth-grader, accounted for 18 points. He won a silver medal on the first day of the meet, running a 9:57.95 in the 3,200-meter run. He experienced the gold on Saturday, turning in a time of 4:32.45 in the 1,600-meter run.
“He ran really well,” Morbitzer said. “He did a great job. There were some concerns about pushing and shoving in the 3,200 (Friday night), but he recovered and did a great job in the 1,600. We knew he would do well at the state meet, because he has beat juniors and seniors all year long.”
Graduating senior Jamie Watson also excelled in Columbia, tallying 16 points. He won a pair of silver medals. He was second in the high jump, clearing 6-8 and second in the triple jump with leap of 46-6.
The 4x800-meter relay team finished second, while first year runner Pierce Emerine set a school record in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:58.49.
The title was the Hawk’s fourth in seven years. The Hawks also have two-second-place finishes under their belts during the same time frame.
Morbitzer told his team he was proud of their accomplishments and for continuing the Hawks’ excellent showings at the state meet.
“Everyone performed to the best of their ability,” he said. “I am very appreciative of the work they put in.”
The Hawk girls finished 12th in the team standings with 23 points.