Led by Brindley Duncan, TCS saw five athletes bring home hardware from Clarksville on Saturday following strong performances at the Tennessee Middle School Athletic Association State Track & Field Championships.
Duncan, an eighth-grader at East Middle School, captured two state titles, including breaking her own state record in the 800-meter run. As a seventh-grader in 2022, Duncan won the 800 and set the TMSAA mark at 2 minutes and 26.67 seconds. This year, she toppled that record on her way to winning the race in 2:24.31.
“It feels amazing knowing that I put in a lot of time to work to get here,” Duncan said. “I had some nerves ahead of the race because I was really hoping to beat my record and keep my place as champion.”
East Middle School also had the second-place finisher in the same 800 race. Katie Grace Nichols clocked in with a time of 2:29.44 to take runner-up in the event. Nichols took sixth place in the same event as a sixth-grader in 2022.
Before setting the new state mark in the 800 run, Duncan had already become a state champion after winning the 1,600 race earlier in the day. Duncan legged out the win with a time of 5:31.08, nearly a second ahead of Soddy Daisy’s Tatum Croft, who crossed the finish line at 5:31.96.
Duncan and Nichols later teamed with Maidson Crowder and Emily Bell to take third place in the 4×400 relay with a time of 4:27.99. Mt. Pisgah was the winning team at 4:25.65, while Legacy Middle School came in second at 4:26.69.
Despite only having competitors in three events, the strong performances of the Lady Panthers allowed them to finish high in the team standings. Against 44 additional teams, East Middle School placed fourth in the girl’s team standings.
West Middle School eighth-grader Addy Peterson also nabbed a state medal after finishing eighth in the discus throw. During her performance, Peterson hurled a distance of 66 feet and 11 inches, edging out Mt. Pisgah’s Jordann Davis by an inch to claim her spot on the podium.
East Middle School had four boys compete in the 4×400 relay, finishing just outside the podium and in ninth. Maddox Muse, Kobe Taylor, Adrian Perkins, and Gage Allen teamed and clocked in at 4:06.72.
“I am so proud of all these middle-school athletes,” said TCS Director of Schools Dr. Catherine Stephens. “Every single one of these athletes represented Tullahoma at the highest level. This success speaks highly of our track and field programs, their coaches, and their families who support them. I cannot wait to see what the future holds, and for those eighth-graders, I look forward to seeing what they can accomplish at the high school level.”
Top photo: East Middle School had eight athletes compete at the TMSAA State Track & Field Championships on Saturday. From left are EMS Head Coach Anthony Johnson, Adrian Perkins, Maddox Muse, Katie Grace Nichols, Brindley Duncan, Emily Bell, Madison Crowder, Kobe Taylor, Gage Allen, and EMS Assistant Coach Tara Litchford.