Italy High School competed in the 2009 TESEI Relays at Ferris High School. Italy finished in 3rd place in the coed team totals with 146.5 points behind Ferris and Palmer but ahead of Dallas Spruce who totaled 91 points.
Coach Steve Coleman has been working with the Varsity Girls on improving their relay exchanges who managed a silver medal.
John Lindsey, an instructor at Italy High School, has an extensive background in track and has been working with Freshman Kaitlyn Rossa on developing a strategy and setting time goals during her runs.
As a result, Rossa set the pace for the Varsity Lady Gladiators bringing home two gold medals after running 13:18 in the 2 mile and 6:33 in the mile.
Ferris had a little jack rabbit and Rossa stayed on her tail until the home stretch before kicking it in gear, like only Rossa can, to win gold in the 3200 meter run (2 miles).
In the 1600 meter run (1 mile), Rossa just blasted out of the blocks and never looked back as she dominated the field for her second gold medal winning by 100 meters.
Kyonne Birdsong finished 4th and Lupita Luna took 5th in the 100 meter dash.
In the field events, Kaytlyn Bales received 2nd place in the discuss with a throw of 72’1". Bales also finished 5th in the shot put.
Lauren Geralds finished in 3rd place in discuss with a throw of 66’6" but won 1st place in the shot put with a throw of 33’1".
Italy’s girls finished in 2nd place in the 400 meter relay and 3rd place in the 800 meter relay.
The Varsity-girls finished as the runner-ups making Italy fans proud and received a plaque acknowledging their efforts.
The Varsity Boys broke the tape as well finishing 3rd overall behind Ferris and Palmer but ahead of Dallas Spruce.
The Ferris meet marked many firsts for some Italy tracksters. It was the first time for Devonta Simmons to compete in the high jump and he was able to earn a 2nd place medal in the 300 meter intermediate hurdles.
Aaron Thomas also earned his first medal at the meet recording 3rd place in the high jump.
In running events, Ryan Ashcraft came in 5th in the 3200 meter run as well as taking 6th Place in the 1600 meter run. Oscar Gonzalez finished 6th in the 400 meter dash while Curtis Cole took 5th in the 200 meter dash. Darrin Moore finished in 6th place in the 200 meter dash as well.
Heath Clemons finished 5th in the 300 intermediate hurdles while Johnson took 3rd place in the 100 meter dash.
Coach Craig Bales has been concentrating his efforts with the discuss throwers and shot putters which is a young group consisting of Freshmen and Sophomores but who’s futures look bright in the field events.
Italy finished in 2nd place in the 1600 meter relay, 3rd place in the 800 meters and 3rd place again in the 400 meter relays.
In field events, Darrin Moore turned in a long jump of 18’4" for 4th place while John Isaac tied for 5th with a jump of 18’1".
Jasenio Anderson and Heath Clemons took 3rd and 4th place in the high jump with jumps of 5’6" each. Isaac, Clemons and Moore ranked 4th, 5th and 6th in the triple jump.
The Italy track program thrives thanks to the efforts of some amazing kids. Brandon Souder is a prime example of a student athlete who balances multiple activities along with his schoolwork but always works hard and is a very consistent performer.
Winning a 3rd place medal in the long jump, a 5th place medal in the triple jump and a 4th place medal in the 400 meter dash, Souder is truly an example of what it means to be a Gladiator, he’s a warrior.
Congratulations to all the Italy track athletes for their accomplishments in Ferris. Keep up the good work!