TAMPA — Hillsborough High boys track coach Joe Sipp talked about his team’s overall win at the Charles Johnson Invitational on Saturday and talked about “rebuilding.”
As he walked away, several of his fellow coaches just snickered at the word “rebuilding.”
They might be young, but if this is a rebuilding season, that doesn’t bode well for the rest of Hillsborough County during the next few years.
Even though this team isn’t as experienced as the team that finished ninth in the state meet last year, Sipp said it’s time his team grew up in a hurry.
“We always expect to win,’’ Sipp said with some of the other coaches looking on. “We are young, we are rebuilding, and we still need to find an identity.”
There was plenty of identity at King High School on Saturday. Duane Driskoll had a big day and Xavier Byrd and Dwayne Lawson finished 2-3 in the boys long jump, the first event of the day. Roberto Sanchez was key to the overall win, finishing sixth in the 800-meter run, but Sipp said the points he collected were what put the Terriers over the top.
In the girls meet, Sebastian River packed up plenty of points in the field events, but Freedom took over from there to finish second overall. Freedom coach Dwight Smith said his team has more depth than ever this season and can compete at state.
“We aren’t as deep as we could be,’’ Smith said, “but we are just taking baby steps right now. We aren’t all about personal records, we’re just about where we are at the end of the season.’’
Senior Annelle Miranda-Smith medaled in three events and took first in the 300-meter hurdles.
“I like what I have seen so far,” Smith said. “Our team this year has everything it takes to make it all come together.”
Newsome boys win Spoto Invitational
RIVERVIEW — The Newsome boys used a well-rounded effort from all areas to outpace the field as the Wolves won by 71 points at the inaugural 11-team Spoto Invitational.
Newsome had event winners from Carson Steinberg (shot put, 45-7), Jacob Hughes (pole vault, 11-6) and Todd Jackson (400, 51.07).
In addition the Wolves picked up wins in the 4x100, 4x200 and 4x400 relays.
Newsome finished with 172.5 points to finish ahead of Steinbrenner (101.5).
With quality teams like Steinbrenner, Riverview and Lakeland Kathleen in the field, Newsome coach Kevin Sharpe was pleased with his team’s effort.
“Some guys stepped up today. This was our first real test. The pole vault really helped us with the 27 points they scored,” he said.
Kathleen won the girls meet with 135 points. Newsome was runner-up with 113.