Speed demon

Published 10:15 pm Monday, April 4, 2011

Washington’s Raheem Patterson (front, right) heads down the stretch during the 200-meter dash on Monday at Washington High School. Patterson won first place and set a Washington school record with a time of 21.55. (WDN Photo/Brian Haines)

Facing stiff competition in J.H. Rose and Bertie, Raheem Patterson new he would need a top-notch performance to capture a first place finish in the 200-meter dash. The Washington speedster was up to the challenge, as he not only took first place, but set a Washington school record in the process by turning in a time of 21.55.

Paterson beat the previous record of 21.90, which was set by Washington Walk-of-Famer Joe Randolph.

“Today was one of those days that proved to him that when he is focused he can be as good as anyone around,” Washington coach Jon Blank said. “Hopefully we can continue to keep that focus from here on out till the state championship.”

Patterson’s record-breaking performance highlighted a day that was sprinkled with solid performances as the boys team tallied 55 points to take second place, finishing behind J.H. Rose (74) and ahead of Bertie (33). The girls team accumulated 36 points to place third behind Rose (91) and Bertie (37).

“For the boys I thought we could have done a little better today. I’m not pleased but I’m not displeased either. We finished in the middle and it was kind of a middle performance,” Blank said. “For the girls, I think the girls went out and competed today. We set some PRs (personal records) and I’m pleased with the effort they gave me.”

On the boys side, Kevin Chapman took first in the shot put with a throw of 45-feet-one-inch. While he was happy Chapman placed first, Blank said he would like to see his star shot-putter improve his throws as he nears the postseason.

“We expect Kevin to take first every time out but we really need him to focus on setting PRs and getting near 50 feet if he wants to be a serious contender for a state title,” Blank said. “He’s thrown a 49.2 this year and we want that or better every time out. He just can’t be content with anything less.”

In the long jump, William Ellegor was tops with a jump of 21-feet-10-inches, while he took second in the triple jump.

“Ellegor was strong in the jumps today,” Blank said. “He hadn’t really practiced the triple that much so I’m very pleased with the effort there. He’s come out strong lately in the jumps.”

Distance runner Jack Rodman placed first in the 1,600-meter run (5:16), while Thomas Sutton ran a 2:13 to finish first in the 800-meter run.

“I was really pleased with the effort by Jack Rodman, Thomas Sutton and Pernall Razor (second place in the 300-meter hurdles),” Blank said.

Haley Hiatt led the girls squad as she was involved in all three of Washington’s first-place finishes.

Hiatt tossed the discuss 87-feet-eight-inches to secure the gold, while taking part in the first-place finishing 4×100 and 4×400-meter relays.

“Haley had another good day, but she is another one that if we can get her focus in the right place we can get her to do even better than what she has been doing,” Blank said. “She has shown us better numbers throughout the year. We are hoping on the big days she will pull out the big numbers.”

In the 4×100, Hiatt, along with Yasmine Horton, Datisha Redmond and Tekearah Spruill ran a time of 52.21 to best the competition. That same group dashed to a 4:31 in the 4×400 to win first place.

“They have done an excellent job all year,” Blank said of the relay team. “They just go out and get the job done and cutting time.”

Washington will be back in action on Wednesday when it plays at West Craven. The Pam Pack will compete in the Coastal Conference meet the following Wednesday at West Carteret.