Vandebilt girls finish second at state meet
Sun. May 11, 2014 at 9:37 p.m. | By Chris Singleton/Staff Writer
Vandy's Alexa Breaux and girls track coach Matt Falgout hold up the team Class 4A runner-up state title trophy. (Photo by Chris Singleton/Staff)
BATON ROUGE — Vandebilt Catholic enjoyed one of its best days ever at the Louisiana High School Athletic Association outdoor state track and field meet held at LSU's Bernie Moore Track Complex Saturday.
Vandebilt had four athletes who stood on the prestigious Top 3 winner's podium.
Senior boys pole vaulter Patrick Watson led the way with a state title, sophomore distance runner Alexa Breaux finished first overall in girls' 3,200-meter and second in the 1,600-meter runs, freshman pole vaulter Brooke Brunet finished second overall and senior javelin thrower Sydney Lerille had a third-place finish.
The girls team success helped Vandebilt take home the Class 4A girls state runner-up title, which is the highest finish it has ever had at the state meet.
The Lady Terriers, which also had an eighth-place finish in the girls triple jump from senior Kaylyn Kitchen, finished with 32 team points. St. Scholastica won the Class 4A state title with 65 team points.
Vandebilt girls track coach Matt Falgout said it was an incredible -- and unexpected -- feeling to stand on the podium and receive the girls state runner-up trophy.
"We had no clue this was going to happen," Falgout said. "It's really good how the girls did. We didn't even win district or have a Top 5 finish at regionals. To come out runner up at state is amazing."
The Lady Terriers sealed the state runner-up title when Breaux won the girls 3,200-meter race at 11 minutes, 36.73 seconds. It was the first outdoor state title for Breaux, who won the state indoor two-mile race earlier this year. The Lady Terriers edged out Plaquemine (31 team points) for the runner-up title.
"The girls worked so hard," Falgout said. "Alexa put it away for us. Winning this state runner-up trophy is just going to be good for our track program. It's going to be good for us in the future. It's going to give the girls experience to do better next year and get better and win that first-place trophy."
Knowing that Vandebilt had a chance to win a state runner-up title, Breaux gave one of her best efforts of the season in the girls 3,200. Before the race, a rain-delay that lasted almost an hour made the track slippery, but Breaux said she was able to overcome the elements.
"It's really amazing," said Breaux, who placed second overall in state outdoor two-mile race last year. "I've been working for this since last year. For my goal to finally to have come about is really exciting. I've worked so hard for this, and it's a tribute to how my hard work has finally paid off. It's a great accomplishment."
In her other race of the day, Breaux had a second-place time in the girls' 1,600-meter run at 5:24.04 seconds. Although she fell short of the state champion Carley Boyce of St. Scholastica (5:19.43), she set a personal best with her finish.
Brunet earned a state-runner up mark in the girls pole vault, finishing with a jump of 11-feet, 6 inches. The only vaulter in the Class 4A competition who had a better jump was Assumption senior Bailey Daigle, who cleared 12-feet to win her third straight outdoor state title in the event.
Despite falling short of a state title, Brunet said she was happy with her performance. She said she had a personal best jump, and she is already looking forward to next year's meet.
"It was an awesome feeling," Brunet said. "I'm glad that everything worked out (Saturday). I had an all-mental mindset going into it. I'm very pleased with my performance. That was my highest jump all year."
Lerille, who is headed to West Alabama University on a volleyball scholarship, had a third-place javelin throw at 127-10.
"Third place is better than nothing," Lerille said. "Even though I didn't PR today, I still wanted to come out and compete well one last time for my senior year. I wanted to come in here and throw about 130 or above that, but I didn't throw it as far. Even though it was not what I expected, it was good to still get on the podium and get a medal. It's awesome."
For Watson, it was his second straight state championship in the boys' pole vault at the outdoor state meet.
Despite battling a hamstring injury, Watson cleared 15-feet to win the state title on Saturday, edging out Brandon Hollier of Beau Chene (14-06).
Watson, who won the outdoor state title as a junior with a mark of 15-feet, fell short on an attempt to top 15-7, but he had no regrets about his performance.
"It wasn't my best," Watson said. "My PR is 15-7. It wasn't great, but I'm happy with the results. I'm okay with it."
Watson, who plans to attend LSU, said it was exciting to capture a state title, but it wasn't the most important goal.
"The gold medal and state records are a beautiful thing, but if you are not good enough without them, you'll never be good enough with them," he said. "My values aren't based on what records or gold medals I have. It's having faith and knowing how much God loves me. That's what had made me the winner of any of those gold medals. That's why I carry myself the way I do."
Vandebilt pole vaulting coach Kevin Trosclair praised Watson for his dedication and work ethic. Watson ends his prep career at the third member of his family to win state titles at Vandy, joining his brothers Paul and Chris as track champions.
"I think he did well," Trosclair said. "He didn't jump as he would like, but that happens. As long as he wins a state championship, which is the ultimate goal. He did great. I'm really proud of him."
Here is a look at how the rest of Terrebonne Parish's athletes fared at Saturday's meet. For the story on Lafourche Parish athletes, check out Monday's print edition of The Courier and Daily Comet or visit www.bayoupreps.com.>
Takharri Gasery seventh in boys high jump at 6-00, while Tylone Johnson placed seventh in the boys 400-meter dash at 50.60.
For the Lady Braves, Jessica Coleman was seventh in the 800-meter run at 2:26.50. The Lady Braves 1,600-meter relay team was eighth (4:18.88).
Senior Kyler Trosclair, who was Ellender's lone participant at state meet, finished just shy of a podium trip with a fourth-place mark in the girls javelin (124-04).
South Terrebonne's Lauren Belanger placed seventh in the 4A girls high jump at 4-08, and Megan Trosclair placed seventh in the girls 400-meter dash at 1:02.43. Louis Blanchard was eighth in the boys shot put at 43-05, Chandler Arceneaux was fifth in the boys discus at 141-03 and Stefon Naquin was ninth in the boys pole vault at 10-06.
Kitchen took eighth in the girls triple jump at 33-06 1/4.
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Dominique Manuel placed eighth in the girls 400-meter dash at 1:06.03.