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The Journal Gazette

  • State champion Justin Becker of Carroll races to the finish line in the 200-meter dash.

  • Photos by Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Northrop’s Shaton Vaughn outruns Carroll’s Benjamin Marano in 300-meter hurdles Saturday. Vaughn won the state championship in 37.52 seconds. Marano was second.

  • Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette Snider’s Jesse Hamlin leads the pack during the 1,600-meter run at the state track and field finals Saturday. Hamlin finished third in 4:12.14.

Sunday, June 03, 2018 1:00 am

Boys track state finals

Hurdler, sprinter win crowns again

Vaughn, Becker fight off disappointments

AUBREE REICHEL | The Journal Gazette

BLOOMINGTON – Two Fort Wayne seniors returned to the top of the podium at the boys state track and field finals Saturday.

Northrop's Shaton Vaughn defended his title in the 300-meter hurdles, winning in 37.52 seconds, and Carroll's Justin Becker won the 200 in 21.50 at Indiana University's Robert C. Haugh Track and Field Complex.

Vaughn finished fourth in 14.29 in the 110 hurdles and used that disappointment as motivation in the 300 hurdles.

“I felt like for the 110 hurdles, I was thinking too much and I wasn't myself when I ran those, so I didn't run as good as I could have,” said Vaughn, who helped Northrop to a fourth-place finish in the team standings with 36 points. “After my coaches and parents talked to me, it helped me bounce back and run the 300 hurdles as myself like I know how to.

“The pressure most definitely (got to me) in the 110s. I didn't want to admit it at the time but me, during the 110s, I wasn't the usual me. I wasn't myself during the 110s.”

Becker was the anchor leg on last year's state champion 400 relay team, but the 200 is his first individual title. He finished second in the 100 in 10.52, a personal best, just 0.01 second behind Avon's Isaac Guerendo and ahead of Wayne's Craig Young, who was third in 10.58.

“It's my senior season, and I knew I wanted to go big or go home and that's exactly what I did today,” said Becker, who helped Carroll to a tie for sixth in the team standings with 31 points. “I came up short in the 100, getting second place to Isaac, but he ran a great race. The 200, it was give it all I got and just pushed at the end. It means a lot. Beyond words, can't explain it.”

A disqualification in the 400 relay for the second time in three years cost the Chargers a podium spot, leaving Becker feeling ambitious heading into the final race in a Chargers uniform.

“We had big hopes from last year being state champs, and I just used that disqualification (as motivation) in the 200,” he said. “(The relay) was behind me so I thought, 'This race is right now,' and just focusing on that race (the 200).”

Carroll's Ben Marano got second to Vaughn in the 300 hurdles in 38.27, and Norwell's Dylan Felger was fifth in 38.59.

In the 3,200 relay, Northrop finished third in 7:48.46, and Leo was eighth in 7:51.49. The Bruins' 1,600 relay finished third in 3:18.77, and South Side was fourth in 4:18.77.

Northrop's Jalen Royal was fourth in the 800 in 1:55.41, and Wawasee's Luke Griner was eighth in 1:56.28.

Snider's Jesse Hamlin finished third in the 1,600 in 4:12.14, and the Panthers' 400 relay team was ninth (42.60).

In the field events, DeKalb's Isaac Brown finished sixth in high jump at 6-foot-7. Plymouth's Nate Patterson cleared a state meet record 7-4 to defend his championship from last year.

Churubusco's Sam Wood finished seventh in pole vault, clearing 14-9. Frankfort's Colton Crum won the event with a state meet record 17-6.25.

Avon won the team title with 66 points to runner-up Indianapolis North Central's 47. Hamilton Southeastern was third with 44 points.

areichel@jg.net