What started as a cloudy, cool day for the Virginia High School League State Track Finals at Radford University turned into sunny, hot and humid, taking its toll on the high school athletes who ventured into the Blue Ridge for a tourney that came on the same weekend as gradudation.
Floyd County High School sent several track team members to the state meet this year. Most were shut out of wins or top three finishes until the final event of the day, the boy’s 1600-meter relay. When a the first leg runner fell during the exchange at 400 meters, Floyd County’s chances looked bleak but the final leg runner sprinted from third to first in the final leg, giving FCHS their only win of the day.
Still, qualifying for the state finals is an accomplishment in today’s highly-competitive athletic environment and FCHS this year sent their own to state finals in wrestling and track, plus the girls’ softball team has qualified for the state finals even if they lose the regional playoff on Monday.
Disappointing, though, was the turnout of fans in Radford for the event. This was a state final and there were a lot of empty seats in the stadium at Radford U. Granted, track and field may not have the appeal of football or basketball but it was a state final. During the wrestling state finals in Salem earlier this year, the civic center, fans from participating high schools packed the civic center on a weekday.