Brandon Sanders had a memorable day while leading the Dreher Blue Devils to their first state championship in 52 years, but it was much more than a one-man show at the Class 3A state meet on May 12 at Harry Parone Stadium.
The Midlands story also included top 10 finishes by Lower Richland and Chapin.
Sure, Sanders went out with a four gold medal day, but those 40 points would have been pointless without the quality support provided by the likes of Bradford Lemmons, Myron Chambliss, John Myers, Joshua Wilkins and Rickey Griddine.
Lemmons earned four medals – silvers in the 200- and 400-meter runs and two relay golds alongside Sanders. Griddine was also on board the winning 400 and 1600 relay rides. Chambliss was a silver medallist in the shot put, while Myers and Wilkins rated bronze prizes for third-place finishes in the long jump and discus, respectively.
Meanwhile, Lower Richland tied for fifth place with 42 points and Chapin was seventh with 30.
It was the fourth straight top five effort by Lower Richland. Marcus Edmond was the lone Diamond Hornets individual champion in the 400, and he ran a leg on the third-place 1600 relay team. Sophomore Jaylen Bacon was busy and productive, scoring in three individual events with the highlight being a second-place finish in the 200.
Senior Mason Zandi was the headliner for Chapin with a sweep of the throws, prevailing in the shot put for the second year in a row with a heave of 53-2.5 and moving up fropm fourth to first in the discus. The other big points came with a second-place effort by the 3200 relay team of Heath Lorick, Cody Singletary, Matthew Hite and Fabian Hardy.
In another Midlands item of note, Airport’s Josh Hillian earned a silver medal for a second-place finish in the 100.