For a second time, local track meet in Jefferson

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By Mike Farner

 SHEPHERDSVILLE – As my old grandpappy used to tell me, ‘you can’t flog a dead horse.’

     Well actually you can flog a dead horse, but you just don’t get any results.

     As has been stated here many times in the past, the condition of the three tracks at the Bullitt County high schools is not good. In fact, it is horrible.

     That is the reason that on Monday, the All-Bullitt County Track and Field Championships will be contested at Fairdale High School. No track in Bullitt County is fit to host any meet, although, the middle schools are doing the best they can on the local tracks and in the coming weeks will try to conduct a county championship locally.

     Nothing has changed since last spring in terms of an outcome. However, there is a flicker of hope as the Bullitt County Board of Education is now accepting bids to resurface and then line the three existing tracks. While all word is that the jobs will be completed before next spring, we’ll have to hold our breaths, at least until it is known if the bids will come in as acceptable.

     Forget for a moment about putting a band-aid on an amputation, but at least something is being done and next spring there can be an All-Bullitt County Track and Field Championship Meet in let’s say, and I’m just brain-storming here, how about Bullitt County?

     Still, on Monday, the competition and thoughts should be focused on the athletes. This will be their day.

     Despite all of the questions about the tracks for the past year, the local track teams are having a pretty good spring in the big picture. The overall numbers have been marginal, but the level of athlete has been pretty good. While there is no athlete out there like former Bullitt East standout Trevor Troutman who you knew were going to win a state championship when May rolled around. Still, there are three or four athletes in five or six events who could finish in the top three at the state championships in Lexington at the end of May with some shot at a state title. There are a number of other athletes who could be looking at a top ten finish in the state finals.

     There is the big question hanging over many of the athletes after the Kentucky High School Athletic Association realigned track and cross-country last summer. For the first time, all three Bullitt County teams will be competing in the same class, Class 3-A (for the largest schools in the state), this spring. That makes it hard to get a read based on past performances.

Girls Teams Strong

     Without a doubt, the girls’ competition on Monday should be a lot more competitive than the boys’ meet. It will not be a surprise if any of the three teams pulls out the title that Bullitt East won last year.

     In last week’s Border Battle Meet at Nelson County, all three Bullitt County schools were present and finished within 53 points of each other. It should be pointed out that the scoring for a meet with three teams is quite a bit different than for one with six schools, so even that margin is really not that big.

     Bullitt East does have a number of top-of-the-line-athletes who will win multiple events on Monday. Senior Meghan Roby will be the favorite in the two sprints and sophomore Sierra Poppell’s only challenge in the distance events will come from teammate Caroline Collins. Plus, junior TeeKay Brown will win some events, but exactly which events she enters is up in the air as she could concentrate on track events or field events on Monday.

     North Bullitt will answer with senior Bre Stewart who is the best high jumper in the area and one of the best in the state. Still, teammate Lauren Deel and Bullitt Central’s Jessie Renfrow have also cleared 4-8 or better this spring making the high jump an interesting event. Deel could also win some of the other jumping events.

       The Lady Eagles will also be favored in the 800-meter run with two-time state champion Chelsey Slayton.

            Other than the high jump, perhaps the most interesting event of the meet will be the last race, the 1,600-meter relay. Both Bullitt East and North Bullitt had top-10 finishes in the state meet in Class 2-A last year and just last week with within two seconds of each other.

            Bullitt Central will get points from the Renfrow sisters, Ally and Jessie, but they might not have quite the depth to score enough points in this meet.

            Bullitt Central could be looking to ‘steal’ a few points in this meet. This spring, the Cougars have been working in the pole vault, an event that no local athlete has attempted in close to ten years. If Fairdale has a certified pit (you don’t need a certified pit to practice the pole vault, but you need one to use in an official meet), then the Cougars and Lady Cougars could get points just carrying their pole into the meet. Bullitt Central got points in that event in both the boys’ and girls’ events at the Border Battle last week.

Boys’ Battle

     The numbers game will be much more noticeable on the boys’ side than the girls’ side on Monday. There could well be events where just one boy will be competing or even the possibility of an event being skipped over because there is no entrant.

     Bullitt East has the athlete who will score the most points in junior Trase Milburn. He is one of the state’s top high jumpers and is also strong in both the long jump and triple jump. If needed, he could even move into the 300-meter hurdles, something he did at last year’s All-Bullitt County Meet, just to get a few team points.

     Bullitt Central will probably be able to counter most of Milburn’s points with junior Trevor Carnell. The football standout will be battling teammate Brandon Krebs in the two sprints and he is also the top shot putter in the county. The Cougars should also be strong in the sprint relays, but they don’t have a lot in the distance events where Bullitt East has Isaac Shelton.

     What we do know is that North Bullitt will not win the boys’ team race on Monday. The Eagles are very low on numbers and will enter only a handful of events.

       As of the weekend, the weather report for Monday was not good. At this point, there is no plan ‘B’ for a make-up date.

            The events on Monday will start at around 4:30 p.m. There will be a small admission charge for this event at Fairdale High School.