'Betsy emerges as boys' best in Watauga track and field meet

By Tim Chambers

   KINGSPORT--Cyclone track and field coach Jim Presnell knows what it takes to be a champion, and obviously has given this year's 'Betsy squad the motivation it needed to become champions of the Watauga Conference.
   The former Cyclone all-state shot put and discus thrower watched his boys squad pull away from Unicoi 197 to 143.2 to clinch the title at Sullivan North on Friday afternoon.
   Depth proved big in the Elizabethton win as the Orange and Black could be found placing in many events to nail down the conference championship.
   David McDaniel, Matt Young, Evan Lindauer and Caleb McDaniel broke the 4x800 relay record while Justin Cooter, Brad Osborne, Lindauer and Caleb McDaniel shattered the 4x400 mark.
   Proving big as he cleared the bar at 5-10 to win the high jump on Thursday, Turley followed up on Friday by winning the 200-meter run in (23.4). Cooter ran the 300 hurdles in (43.0) while David McDaniel sprinted to a time of (52.9) in the 400.
   Young pulled away in the 3,200 with a time of 10:22 while the 4x100 relay team ran a stunning 45.2.
   The star on the boys side was Caleb McDaniel. McDaniel was on the record setting 4x800 team (8:41) and 4x400 (3:41.5) relay squad. He topped that off by claiming the 800 with a time of (2:04.6). McDaniel was named Runner of the Meet.
   It's obvious that Coach Presnell is well educated in track and field as the Cyclones proved to have the poise and skill to win a title they held in 2002. Look for the boys in black and orange to turns some heads in the upcoming regional meet, which is set for Thursday at Anderson County.
   Unicoi County's Aaron Fain captured Field Event honors by prevailing in the pole vault (11-0) and finishing second in the triple jump, plus fourth in the high jump.
   On the girls side, Valnessha Redd was a shinning star for the Cyclones, setting a record in the long jump at 17-8 1/2 while also claiming the triple jump title on Thursday. She was third in the shot put and fifth in the high jump.
   Redd kept up her domination on Friday with wins in the 100-meter hurdles (16.9), and 100-meter run with a time of 12.97. For her efforts, she was named Field Athlete of the Meet.
   Volunteer claimed the ladies title while Sullivan Central finished second. Jacklyn Talbert led the Falcons with record-setting performances in the 800 meters (2:23:92) and the 400 meters (60.8).