Dalton fourth in decathlon

from staff reports

CHATTANOOGA -- Flourishing in three events, Happy Valley's Matt Dalton seized fourth-place honors in the Class A-AA 2002 state decathlon, which wrapped up on Tuesday at the annual Spring Fling showcase.
   Winning the pole vault and taking second in the 400-meter dash on Monday, Dalton followed up with a second-place performance in the 1,500-meter run on Tuesday to finish with 5,041 points.
   Neal Wandell of Elizabethton High secured a respectable sixth-place showing, scoring 4,960 points. His 38-0.75 effort in the shot put beat all competitors.
   Kevin Patterson of Franklin Road Academy tallied 6,005 points to achieve top honors, followed by Jerome Buchanan (5,724) of B.T. Washington and Michael Joyner (5,660) of Raleigh-Egypt. Hixson's Rick Ackridge (4,974) was fifth.

   Lady Cyclone freshman Valneesha Redd made her first appearance in the state pentathlon a promising one, recording a third-place showing with 2,524 points.
   Redd was superior to the other 11 competitors in the long jump, turning in a 17-0 effort.
   Molly Kennedy of Hume-Fogg emerged the champion with 2,928 points, while Tamea Scales of Ridgeway claimed runner-up honors with 2,725 points.
   Jessica Roller of Unicoi County finished eighth in the five-event competition with 2,277 points.