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Record-setters converge at South Effingham Invitational
Chloe Adkins
Effingham County's long-distance runner Chloe Adkins gets ready for the 3200-meter run at the South Effingham Invitational April 9. Adkins won the event with a personal-best time of 11:47.59. (Donald Heath for the Effingham Herald.)

By Donald Heath

Special for the Effingham Herald


GUYTON – Apparently, Effingham County’s freshman long distance runner Chloe Adkins feels right at home on South Effingham’s track.

Adkins set a personal best in the 1600-meter run with a time of 5:28.66 and produced another personal best of 11:47.59 in the 3200 while breezing to first-place finishes in both events at the South Effingham Invitational on April 9.

Adkins, who also plays soccer for the Rebels, has been getting stronger throughout the season and now holds the Region 2-6A best times in the 800, 1600 and 3200, according to Internet site

To put Adkins’ efforts in perspective, she has run the 1600 nine seconds faster than former ECHS standout Candace Kieffer did as a freshman and 34 seconds faster than Kieffer’s freshman time in the 3200.

Kieffer, now running at the University of Miami, holds both school records in the 1600 (5:14.69 set as a junior) and 3200 (11:36.15 set as a junior). Adkins is third in the 1600 and second in the 3200.

The region meet will be held at Grovetown High School on April 23.

The South Effingham meet had other outstanding performances. ECHS’ Berry Randolph broke the school record in the discus with a toss of 130 feet. The previous mark of 128-10.5 by Tovar Allen had not been touched in 13 years.

Randolph, a sophomore, had a previous best throw of 127-11 in his first meet of the season, the Game Changer Alley Invitational at Richmond Hill on Feb. 23.

For South Effingham, junior Harrison Crofts broke the school record in the high jump with a leap of 6-7.

Crofts shared the previous mark of 6-6 with Stephen Kraeling (2019) and Justice Mydell (2023).

Crofts said he’s jumped higher in practice.

“When you do it in a meet, it’s a lot different,” Crofts said. “It seems so much more official. I feel like I’m hitting my stride now.”

SEHS freshman Brooke Crickard continued her domination of the 800-meter run with a first-place time of 2:23.01. She also ran a leg of the first-place 4 X 800 relay (10:38.02).

Mustangs freshman Justine Nevels was a winner in the high jump with a leap of 5-2. Teammate Danni Lynn won the discus with a toss of 106-0.

In the pole vault, SEHS senior Aubrey Edge topped the field with a 9-0 on Senior Night.

Here are the results of local athletes who placed in the top eight of their events in the 13-team meet:

SEHS Girls

Syraiah Wilkins (100, 4th, 12.69), Zoe Robinson (100, 6th, 12.81; LJ, 7th, 14-8.5), Brooke Crickard (800, 1st, 2:23.01), Lydia Alderman (800, 2nd, 2:33.92; 1600, 2nd, 5:55.82), Lily McDonald (1600, 3rd, 6:01.20; 3200,2nd, 13:02.98), Morgan Hetzel (1600, 8th, 6:45.64), Nora Mason (3200, 4th, 13:49.19), Halee Harper (3200, 7th, 14:24.96), Valencia Byrd (100H, 7th, 17.97), Christeon Lewis (300H, 2nd, 49.65), 4 X 100 relay (5th, 50.51), 4 X 200 relay (2nd, 1:47.23), 4 X 800 relay (1st, 10:38.02), Justine Nevels (HJ, 1st, 5-2), Madison Mills (LJ, 3rd, 15-8; TJ, 6th, 32-3.5), Makenzi Polk (TJ, 7th, 31-2), Aubrey Edge (Pole, 1st, 9-0), Allie Grassi (Pole, 2nd, 8-6), Jamie Crooms (Pole, 5th, 7-0), Lyla Gergerich (Pole, 7th, 6-6), Danni Lynn (Discus, 1st, 106-0; Shot, 3rd, 33-8.5), Mia Fitzpatrick (Discus, 8th, 89-8).


Q’Ron France (400, 4th, 52.97; LJ, 6th, 20-3), Ben Fluegel (800, 2:12.95, 7th; 1600, 5th, 4:55.98), Tyler Phillips (1600, 4th, 4:50.98; 3200, 2nd, 10:33.86), Caiden Mason (1600, 6th, 4:58.00, 3200, 5th, 10:43.41), Kenny Carlton (110H, 2nd, 15.39; 300H, 2nd, 41.94), Damien Washington (110H, 7th, 17.26), 4 X 200 relay (6th, 1:35.31) 4 X 400 relay (2nd, 3:38.58), 4 X 800 relay (2nd, 8:55.89), Harrison Croft (HJ, 2nd, 6-7), Marcus Campbell (Pole, 3rd, 9-0), Camren Turner (Pole, 4th, 8-6), Tanner Hughes {Discus, 5th, 115-3), Shane Alvin (Discus, 7th, 113-9).


ECHS girls

Kayden Gadson (800, 8th, 27.96), Jada Praylo (400, 3rd, 1:01.35), Abigail Williamson (800, 6th, 2:48.50), Chloe Adkins (1600, 1st, 5:28.66; 3200, 1st, 11:47.59), Braylin Nease (100H, 5th, 17.60; HJ, 4th, 4-10), 4 X 100 relay (4th, 50.36), 4 X 200 relay (4th, 1:49.30), 4 X 800 relay (7th, 13:49.09), Kameryn Watson (LJ, 6th, 15-2.5), Sarah Hinely (Discus, 6th, 94-3).


ECHS boys

Theron Claridge (1600, 3rd, 4:45.54; 3200, 3rd, 10:38.44), Joseph Esco (3200, 8th, 11:11.72), 4 X 100 relay (3rd, 43.14), 4 X 200 relay (4th, 1:34.21), Berry Randolph (Discus, 2nd, 130-0).