Bailey leads FHS state, regional track standouts
Published 5:22 pm Tuesday, June 27, 2023
Franklin High School’s varsity boys and girls outdoor track and field teams produced some major highlights in the final stages of the 2023 season, led by junior Kaden Bailey who won multiple state and regional titles.
THE STATE MEET
The Franklin boys team finished tied for eighth out of 34 teams to produce scores at the Virginia High School League Class 1 Outdoor Track and Field State Championships on June 2-3 at James Madison University in Harrisonburg.
Bailey won the state championship in the boys 100-meter dash by finishing in 10.99 seconds.
In the preliminaries of the boys 200-meter dash, he placed second with a 23.02-second time, which was only narrowly behind Northumberland High School junior Markiel Cockrell, who finished in 22.78 seconds.
But in the finals for the 200 meters, Bailey crossed the finish line in 22.53 seconds to beat out Cockrell, who ran a 23.09-second time in that particular race.
Bailey was also part of the Franklin boys 4-by-100-meter relay team, which finished as runner-up in the state. Sophomore Sean Solomon, senior Jalen Robinson, senior Jaden Elliott and Bailey combined for a time of 44.30 seconds.
Northumberland’s 4-by-100 team won with a time of 43.65 seconds.
Franklin senior Naziyah Turner closed out her season by throwing the shot 27 feet, 11 ½ inches in the girls shot put, and junior Breanna Cary ran the girls 100-meter hurdles in 19.96 seconds.
“The track team members would like to thank all of our supporters this season and a special ‘thank you’ to Mr. (Travis) Felts for again bringing our senior athletes to James Madison University so they could compete,” Franklin team officials said.
THE REGIONAL MEET
Bailey and the Franklin boys 4-by-100-meter relay team also headlined the highlights of Franklin’s showing at the VHSL Region 1B Outdoor Track and Field Championships held at Sussex Central High School on May 24.
Bailey established himself as the regional champion in the boys 100 meters with an 11.49-second finish, and he won the boys 200 meters with a time of 23.78 seconds.
Solomon, Robinson, Elliott and Bailey powered the 4-by-100 team to a regional title by recording a 44.03-second time, which improved upon their earlier state-qualifying mark.
One way of qualifying for an event at the state meet was to place in the top four of that event at the regional meet, and four other Franklin student-athletes did that.
Cary finished third in the girls 100 hurdles with a time of 19.68 seconds, Turner finished fourth in the girls shot put with a 28-05 throw, Robinson finished third in the boys 100 meters with an 11.86-second time, and Elliott finished fourth in the same event with a time of 11.91 seconds.
The Franklin boys track and field team placed fourth overall at the regional meet out of 10 boys teams to generate a score, and the Franklin girls team placed ninth out of 11 girls teams to score.
All of the Franklin student-athletes highlighted received a medal for their accomplishments at regionals.