Smyrna girls, Dover boys win Henlopen track titles

WOODSIDE — The Smyrna High girls did it again.

Meanwhile, the Dover High boys made sure their drought only lasted a year.

Smyrna captured the girls’ title while Dover won the boys’ championship at the Henlopen Conference track meet hosted by Polytech High on Friday night.

It is the fifth consecutive title for Smyrna on the girls’ side. Dover won its 21st boys’ championship, a conference record, but this came after a year hiatus when the Senators finished in second in 2016.

This time it was different for Dover, which has won the boys’ meet three of the last four years.

“We’ve all put in a great effort this year,” said Dover senior Nyjal Drayton. “Not all of us placed but a lot of us scored and points come together to win a championship. I love my team and I love the effort we put in.”

Smyrna’s Taimira Ramseur wins the girls 100-meter hurdle finals at the Henlopen Conference Track Meet at Polytech on Friday. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

Drayton won the 800-meter run and the 1600-meter run for the Senators. Dover also swept the hurdles thanks to Tayshaun Chisolm who was first in the 110-meter and 300-meter hurdle events.

Kyron Robert also took home an individual medal for Dover by winning the 400-meter dash. The Senators also won a pair of relays — the 4×400 and the 4×800.

Dover’s Tayshaun Chisolm wins the boys 110 meter hurdles finals at the Henlopen Conference Track Meet at Polytech on Friday.

“We had a lot of mistakes and injuries last year,” Drayton said. “Coming into this meet we were really prepared and corrected a lot of our mistakes. Distance and hurdles was big for our win. Our field events came through for us and we had a lot of seniors who are in their first year with us come through for us.”

Dover earned 175 points, ahead of second-place Caesar Rodney (106.49) and third-place Lake Forest (104.5).

Smyrna’s Naomi Bowser competes in the pole vault at the Henlopen Conference Track Meet at Polytech on Friday.

Smyrna recorded 224.5 in the girls’ title race to win while CR was second with 224.5. The Eagles won all four relay events and had nine individual champions.

Naomi Bowser won the 800-meter run, the 1600-meter run and also was first in the pole vault. Myrissa McFolling-Young swept the throwing events with a win in each the shot put and discus while Taimira Ramseur was tops in both the 100-meter hurdles and the 300-meter hurdles.

Maddy Keister was first in the 400-meter run and was on three of the four relay champions.

“I was in some events I don’t normally run but I do that because I don’t want to let my team down,” Keister said. “I do it for my team. I like being here with everybody. Winning is fun but it wouldn’t be as fun if I didn’t win with my team.”

Shaneese Lamons was the final Smyrna champion with a victory in the 100-meter dash.

“We definitely have high expectations when we come into this meet for sure,” said Smyrna coach Maura Schafer. “It’s a really close team this year so they really maybe moreso than ever wanted to win for each other. We really stressed not just winning first but picking up all the other places and that really came through for us here.”

CR’s Dayvhantae McDonald is congratulated after he won the 100 meter dash finals at the Henlopen Conference Track Meet at Polytech on Friday.

The Smyrna girls and Dover boys also received trophies for winning their respective regular season dual meet championships. They both went 12-0 this year.

Dover coach James Solomon and Smyrna’s Schafer were awarded Coach of the Year honors too.

“Our coaching is awesome and we’re really a giant family so that helps us win,” Keister said. “We all work together so well. We teach the new girls coming in that we really are a family and we have to trust in our training. That just carries on throughout a whole bunch of years. We say from day one of the season our goal is to be conference champs and state champs. We work everyday to make it to this point.”

Other winners on the boys’ side included Caesar Rodney sprinter Dayvhantae McDonald who won both the 100-meter dash and the 200. Johnathan Epstein also took home an individual conference crown for the Riders with a victory in the 3200-meters.

Dover’s Erick Brandon competes in the long jump at the Henlopen Conference Track Meet at Polytech on Friday.

Lake Forest won four of the six field events. Isaiah Morris was victorious in both the long jump and the triple jump while Cam Lewis was first in the shot put and discus.

Polytech’s Troy Nixon (high jump) and Cape Henlopen’s Ryan Head (pole vault) also won their events.

Caesar Rodney’s Destiny Bailey-Perkins won a pair of girls’ titles with a win in the 200-meter dash and the long jump. Yelia Correa was another Rider girl who was a champion with a victory in the high jump.

Milford’s Deja Rodriguez-Santiago (3200-meter run) and Sussex Tech’s Ruby Mullen (triple jump) rounded out the individual winners.

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