Staff Photo: Brendan Sullivan Wesleyan's Caroline Reed, center, gives a thumbs up to a familiar face along side Westminster's Charlotte Folinus, left, and Carson Simon while standing on winners podium after the Class AA girls 3200 meter race in the Track and Field State Championships at Hugh Mills Stadium in Albany Thursday. Reed placed second, Folinus placed first and Simon placed forth.
ALBANY -- Wesleyan's Caroline Reed tried a new race strategy in the 3,200-meter run on Thursday and it nearly gave her a state championship.
Reed posted a time of 11 minutes, 27.71 seconds to place second in the Class AA state meet. It was less than a second behind Westminster's Charlotte Folinus, who had a time of 11:27.22 to win the title.
"I've been working on my kick all year," Reed said. "I also didn't go out as fast as I usually do. I found that Philippians 4:13 is true."
It was the first time Reed had finished close to Folinus, who won by 14 seconds over Reed at the region meet.
"That's the closest I've been to Charlotte all year," Reed said.
The runner-up finish helped put Wesleyan in the lead in the team standings with 27 points. The Wolves lead defending state champion Greater Atlanta Christian and Westminster, who are tied with 26 points.
Wesleyan's India Welton and Katie Frerking were state title hopefuls going into Thursday's field events earlier in the day. The duo were ranked No. 1 in their events, but had to settle for third-place finishes.
"With the high jump and pole vault, you just never know," Wesleyan coach Candler Baxley said. "They gave a good effort. Sometimes things don't work out like you want to. It wasn't for a lack of effort, though."
Frerking, the defending high jump state champion, placed third in the event. The 6-foot Frerking, an Auburn basketball signee, cleared 5-2. Frerking jumped 5-4 or better the last four meets, including a personal record of 5-8 at the state sectional two weeks ago. She jumped 5.6-5 to win state last year and was the Daily Post's Field Performer of the Year. Her teammate Hannah Hoskin finished fifth in the event.
Welton took third in the pole vault after clearing 10 feet, 6 inches. It was well below her PR of 11-4 she set at the region meet.
Her teammate Adrienne Lee was sixth in the pole vault with a mark of 9-6.
Norcross' Yost third in mile
Gwinnett County had three runners finish in the top eight of the Class AAAAAA 1,600-meter run.
Norcross' Katherine Yost led the way with a time of 5 minutes, 0.97 seconds to take third place. Brookwood's QuanDra Shanks was fifth (5:04.03) and Mill Creek's Lauren Hovis took eighth (5:05.87). All three set personal records for the season.
Johns Creek's Allie Buchalski won the state title with a time of 4:55.65 and Milton's Annie Kelly was second with a time of 4:59.10.
Buford's Staples takes third
Buford's Corey Staples finished third in the Class AAA triple jump.
The sophomore cleared 37 feet, 1.5 inches on her first jump to put her in first place. However, Douglas County's Amber Hughes came back and jumped 37-5 to win the state title.
Staples' mark of 37-1.5 nearly beat her personal record by a foot.
She also finished ninth in the long jump with a mark of 16-7.5.
Machovec wins pair of titles
Prince Avenue's Anna Machovec, a Dacula resident, won the Class A private state championship in the discus and shot put.
Machovec, whose father David teaches at Dacula, threw for the Falcons as a freshman and transferred to Prince Avenue over the summer.
The sophomore dominated the Class A meet on Thursday with personal records. She threw 133 feet, 4 inches to win the discus title. She had a throw of 38-11 to claim the shot put championship.