The Lakewood High School track & field team won the state championship. Now, six Spartans qualify to compete at Nationals, June 13 through 16 in Greensboro, North Carolina.
The state track & field title was the first won by a Pinellas County team in 43 years.
These accomplishments still seem surreal to the elite athletes, training to face some of the toughest competition in the country.
Head Coach Anthony Snead says, "It hasn't completely sunk in, it probably won't sink in for years. I will tell you that I know it's amazing. I just don't know how amazing right now, but 43 years is a long time, and it's really special to us here at Lakewood."
Twin brothers Shakeem & Shaquill Griffin know it's special. They've put in years of hard work, training for the triple jump and the 4x100 & 4x400 relays.
They plan to enjoy this national track meet experience. Shakeem looks forward to the competition, saying, "It means a lot to see the best of the best and it will bring the best out of you."
T.J. Holmes is one of the best hurdlers in the state, in the country. He too looks to run his best, maybe put up new top times in his individual events and a relay.
"I think it's going to give me a push to go even faster since I'll have some people to compete against," he says.
Consider the lone sophomore in the group of senior track stars: Jahaven Haye just transferred to Lakewood from Jamaica this year. He appreciates the experience and exposure at the state and national levels.
"I still can't believe we won state. It happened so fast. I thank God every day for this team," he says.
This team might need all summer for these accomplishments to sink in, especially if they win at Nationals. That's the goal: win individual events to bring home another top team trophy.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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