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Jones gets loose, lets loose a 55-footer

April 20, 2007|by ANDREW MASON

South Hagerstown senior Trey Jones knew something special was brewing when he stepped into the shot put circle at the Heurich Invitational at Smithsburg last Saturday.

"I was a lot more loose for it," Jones said. "And I had been working on all the little things all week in practice, like using the circle and exploding at the end, getting a real good snap on the release."

Jones entered the meet with a personal-best throw of 50 feet, 5 3/4 inches from last year, when he led all Tri-State shot putters and won the Maryland Class 2A state title. It was the only time he had cracked the 50-foot milestone - before Saturday.

"All my throws Saturday were pretty good," he said. "I opened up with a 51-something, my next throw was a 53 and then I had a 47.

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"My first throw in the finals was 55-2."

Fifty-five feet, 2 inches!

"I knew when I let it go that it was going to be pretty good," Jones said. "But I had no idea it was going to be 55."

It was more than enough for the victory, as Brunswick's Ben Horner, the reigning Maryland 1A state champ, was second in 49-8 1/2.

Jones, who will compete for Hagerstown Community College next school year, now owns the top high school throw in Maryland this season.

No one in the state has thrown farther since 2005.

"That's a real good toss," HCC track coach Andy Reid said. "For him to throw 55 feet in our neck of the woods is extremely rare."

The Tri-State prep record is 57-10 1/2, set in 1979 by Smithsburg's Jim Rodgers.

"My guess is that since Jimmy threw that 57-10 that nobody has come that close, at least not in this county," Reid said.

Jones - who stands 6-feet tall, weighs 290 pounds and bench presses 350 - hopes to get closer.

"My goal actually was 55 this year, but now I'd like to throw better than that at regionals and states," he said. "I just have to get really motivated and pumped up for it, and get loose and just drive it and attack it."

South to honor Lanham

Tonight's 28th annual Rebel Relays at South are about to become so much more.

In honor of former longtime South track coach Harrison Lanham, the relays will be renamed the Harrison Lanham Annual Rebel Relays.

There will be a special ceremony tonight between the James Banks girls and boys open 800-meter runs. Lanham will be presented a plaque, the Rebel pep band will play and South coach Dwayne Freeman and Williamsport coach Cindy Mease - two of Lanham's former athletes - will make some remarks.

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