Both Nash Central and Rocky Mount High were aiming for a NCHSAA 3-A East Regional title Saturday.
Fighting highs winds, steady rain and gusts down the back stretch of up to 25 m.p.h., both fell just short of that goal at West Carteret High School. Nash Central’s boys’ team finished second, losing to Cleveland, which is in its third year of existence.
“They’re excited but also very disappointed that they didn’t pull it off,” Nash Central coach Brian Winham said. “... Things happen. We’re going to do alright.”
Rocky Mount High’s girls’ team finished third.
Led by Damian Silver, who won the 110-meter hurdles and the 300 hurdles, Nash Central had a chance at another regional title. In just a few years, the school already has multiple titles to its name.
However, the unexpected wind gusts highlighted many things for which Winham couldn’t prepare, including an injury to top long-distance runner George Corbin.
“We held on to keep second, that was the big thing,” Winham said.
Silver, who wasn’t even in Nash Central’s top three hurdlers last year, won the 110 hurdles with a time of 14.92 after leading the entire race. He claimed the title in the 300 thanks to a late surge that gave him a .01-second victory in a time of 41.41.
“I thought I had lost,” Silver said. “ ... It was crazy.”
Rocky Mount had the only other regional champions Saturday. Mason Holt won the 3200 in a time of 10:19.83, Jaquell Bryant won the high jump at 6-foot-4-inches and Fantacy Bryant won the triple jump with a distance of 35 feet, 1 1⁄4 inches.
Justin Hite can be reached at 407-9951 or firstname.lastname@example.org