Atoms qualify for Indoor Track Nationals


Senior Jeremiah Bethea breaks the AHS school record for the pole vault event at the state meet on Feb. 25.

Jude Nanaw, Sports Editor

The Atoms track team competed at the indoor track state meet on Feb. 24 and Feb. 25.

There was a total of five Atoms competing at the meet including senior Jacob Weber and junior Joseph McCoy both competing in the 55-meter hurdles event, junior Matthew McKiver competing in the High Jump, freshman Jay Pendarvis in the 300-meter dash and senior Jeremiah Bethea in pole vault.

The Atoms competing were highly successful in their respective events. Weber and Pendarvis both received All-State recognition with Weber coming in at 7.60 seconds and Pendarvis finishing with a time of 35.97 seconds, in their respective events.

McKiver who placed sixth overall in the high jump at the meet came in at 6-02.00 feet.

The most notable accomplishment at the state meet was senior Jeremiah Bethea who with a 14 foot score in the pole vault set a new school record for the event with the previous record being 13.6 feet.

“It honestly felt really amazing knowing that I broke the school record at the time,” Bethea said. “I had to quickly stop thinking about the record after because I had to focus on qualifying for nationals, so I didn’t have that much time to celebrate the accomplishment.”

However, despite Bethea breaking the previous school record, he missed the national qualifier height of 14.6 feet.

“It was great seeing him (Bethea) break the school record because he nearly improved a whole foot at the state meet,” Head Coach Phil Harris said. “Jeremiah put on a clinic at the meet, his form and everything was perfect.”

Three of the Atoms who competed at states: Weber, Pendarvis and McKiver have qualified to compete in the National meet.

“It’s great having multiple runners qualify for the national meet because normally we would only have one person qualify but this year with everyone giving it their best effort, we had many more make it,” Harris said.

The Atoms that have qualified for the National Meet will be competing on Mar. 10 through Mar. 12 in New York, New York.