Broncos athletes secure regionals appearance in track and field

Published 11:00 am Wednesday, April 5, 2023

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The Franklin High School outdoor track and field program hosted a meet March 23 and showed the promise that has Head Coach Dennis Sumblin excited for the future.

Participating in the meet along with the Broncos were programs from Southampton High School, Surry County High School, Northampton High School and Brunswick High School.

The FHS boys 4-by-100-meter team is the defending Virginia High School League Class 1 state runner-up. Jalen Robinson is the only returning member of that team, so Sumblin said he is having to rebuild it. The rebuilding process is coming along just fine, as they have already met the qualifying time that will allow them to participate in the Region 1B Championships.

To date, the following athletes have already met a qualifying time that will allow them to participate at regionals:

  • Breanna Cary, in the 100-meter hurdles;
  • Zariah Mitchell, in the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash;
  • Naziyah Turner, in the shot put;
  • Jalen Robinson, in the long jump and 100-meter dash;
  • Sean Solomon, in the 100-meter dash; and
  • Both girls and boys relay teams.

Robinson is one second off of the 200-meter dash qualifying time. He finished fifth in the boys 200-meter dash at the VHSL Class 1 State Championships last June.

Eighth grade girls Ayarni Benn, who competes in the 100-meter dash, and Jahnia “Missy” Jordan, who competes in the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash, would have already qualified for regionals with their performances in those events in the March 23 meet if they were eligible. Eligibility spans from ninth-12th grade. Benn produced a 13.68-second time in the 100; the state-qualifying time in that event for Class 1 is 13.35. 

Sumblin stated that he is looking forward to another great season with the track and field team and believes “if these eighth and ninth graders, in particular, stick together and keep participating, they will definitely win a state title.” 

Sumblin is assisted by Ronnie “Tic” Adams, Rathmond Collins, Mona Sumblin and former track athletes Latrell Lane and Darius Eley.