Tracking down state

Published 12:00 am Monday, June 6, 2005

By a total of nine tenths of a second, two Lakeland runners made it to state track competition.

At the Eastern regional final last week at Todd Stadium in Newport News, sophomore Cavalier Predist Walker lined up for the 110-meter hurdles.

&uot;Not many people are good at hurdles,&uot; he said. &uot;It’s one of the hardest things, so I decided to try it.&uot;

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He’d found out why the races wasn’t brimming with popularity; qualifying time for the state was 15.2 seconds, and he hadn’t gone that fast all season.

The gun went off, and he hurtled and hurdled down the track. 15.1 seconds later, he crossed the line.

But he wasn’t quite through; later that day, he bolted through the 300-event in 40.3 seconds, again slipping under state qualifying time by .1 seconds. Back at state competition at Todd today and tomorrow, he’d got a shot at becoming Lakeland’s first 110-hurdles state champion since DeAndre White won the event in 2002.

&uot;I guess I’ll do all right,&uot; he said. &uot;This is my first time going to state, and I’m just going to do my best.&uot;

He won’t be alone; fellow Cavalier Robert Faulk will run his farewell meet, competing in the 100- and 200-runs.

&uot;At regionals, I felt calm and relaxed,&uot; said Faulk, who took up track last year to get in shape for football. &uot;I knew what I had to do.&uot;

After watching Walker’s first run, Faulk headed to the line for his shorter race, and shot down the track in 11.16 seconds – .7 under state qualifying time.

&uot;I had a feeling I’d make it,&uot; he said. &uot;I thought I’d done pretty good.&uot;

He kept up the feeling later, charging to state in the 300 in exactly the state time of 22.39 seconds.

&uot;I think I’ll do pretty good (at state),&uot; he said. &uot;I’m going to give it my all like I did at regionals.&uot;