With three wins, Miller leads Ads to CKC victory

May 24, 2004|JILL ERWIN

NICHOLASVILLE - Shatoniah Miller might not have been in the right place to win the 300-meter hurdles Friday at the Central Kentucky Conference Championships, but she thinks she's right where she needs to be to bring home a few regional titles this week.

Miller won three events and scored 38 points to lead the Danville girls to an 11-point win over Mercer County. She fell short a fourth win by finishing nearly three seconds behind Mercer's Chrystal Claunch in the 300 hurdles.

Three of the top four individual scorers were Admirals, as Kayla Brand scored 25 points and Krystal Napier 21.

Those performances were enough to earn Danville coach Sadie Gambrel CKC Coach of the Year honors for the third time.

Miller came close to a personal best in the triple jump, falling just inches short with a distance of 34 feet, 2 inches.

"It's my last CKC and I wanted to go out well," Miller said. "These are the last three - the CKC, the regionals and the state. You have to start with this to go into regionals on a high note."


Miller has every reason to be optimistic. Besides outjumping Mercer's Stacey Gash and Whitney Cecil in the triple, Miller also outdistanced the Scotties' Chelsea Goodman in the long jump with a leap of 16-2.

That's nearly a foot short of Miller's personal best, but it's more than enough for what she's aiming for.

"I'm pleased with my jump," Miller said. "It wasn't my furthest, but it was in the 16s, which is where I need to be. I'm still in the range I'm supposed to be in."

Miller also ran away with the 100 hurdles, winning by nearly three seconds over Gash. Her time of 16.6 seconds was not her best, but Miller had no competition by midway of the race.

She said she's learned how to push herself in situations like that.

"When you know you're going to win, it's almost like you have to make yourself nervous," Miller said. "That's what I do to keep pushing myself. I'll be like, 'She's going to sneak up on you,' and it makes me do my best. It makes me push myself harder."

Class A regional meet begins Thursday

Miller won't need to push herself in the 300 hurdles at the Class A regional meet in Richmond Thursday and Saturday. Defending champion Lashea Preston of Fairview will do that for her.

Miller doesn't hide her intentions to compete with Preston this week, but Claunch gave Miller all she could handle and then some Friday. Miller said the problem came when she ran out early instead of letting Claunch set the pace. That led to Miller getting winded with about 50 meters to go and left her with no final kick.

"The girl from Mercer made me look at the kind of competition I will have next week," Miller said.

"She's got to concentrate hard on Lashea Preston, because that's her competition," Gambrel said. "Running against Mercer today, she'll be mad because she won't want to lose again. It's all in her head, she just has to believe in herself."

Brand won the 100 and 200 dashes and also was on the first-place 400 and 1,600 relays. Napier was on both those relays and also finished second to Brand in the sprints.

Claunch and Gash each scored 191/2 points for Mercer, as both were on the 400 and 800 relays. Claunch also finished third in the 200, while Gash was second in the 100 hurdles and the triple. Chelsea Goodman added 171/2 points with two seconds and two thirds, including second in the long jump and third in the high jump.

Casey County's Danielle Murphy set a new personal best by more than six feet in the discus. The only Casey girl older than ninth grade - several athletes missed the meet for graduation ceremonies - Murphy set the mark of 108-2.

Boyle County's Abby Piper won the 3,200 run, while Boyle's 3,200 relay team also took first.

Garrard County's Wendi Logan won the shot put with a toss 30-1/4.

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