Kinston's Sutton earns MVP honors at Bulldog Invitational

Kinston's Sutton earns MVP honors at Bulldog Invitational

Kinston’s Niejel Wilkins and Lesley Sutton placed high in numerous events during Saturday’s Bulldog Invitational. Photo by Junious Smith III / Neuse News


ROCKY MOUNT — Kinston’s track and field team had a strong showing in Satursday’s Bulldog Invitational.

The event, which took place at Nash Central, featured squads from the NCHSAA 1A through 4A classifications. Still, the Vikings had numerous placings in events throughout the day.

“It was really windy, so that made it a little bit harder going around the track, but for the most part it was a nice competition,” Kinston’s Niejel Wilkins said.

Wilkins won the triple jump with a mark of 42 feet, 3 inches — 10 inches further than Wilson Fike’s Elijahwon Cooper. Wilkins also finished fifth in the 110 and 300 meter hurdles with Kaceion Williams being Kinston’s other top-five individual finisher on the boys’ side, placing fourth in the shot put.

Kinston’s 800-meter relay team won its race with a time of 1:34.40 — 0.43 better than South Central — and the 1,600-meter relay team finished third. Iverson Ward went 11th in the 200-meter dash, Isaiah Koonce was 13th in the 400-meter run, the Vikings had two finish in the top 25 of the 800-meter run with Emmanuel Fisher (17th) and Shykel Harvey-Grady (22nd), Keisen Arnold was 16th in the 300 meter hurdles and Khadadiahn Turner placed 17th in the 1,600 meter run.

Jonah Jerkins (ninth), Tavon Tice (13th) and Jamari Powell (24th) had good showings in the discus while Nautica Jones (seventh), Oronde Whitfield (13th) and Tyreese Ford (21st) were in the shot put competition.  

In the girls’ meet, Lesley Sutton was named MVP after a trio of top-three finishes. Sutton won the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 51.16 — 0.04 ahead of Franklinton’s Mikala Kearney — along with finishing second in the 200-meter dash and third in the 100-meter dash.  

“It meant a lot (to win MVP),” Sutton said. “My main goal was to just run hard, and then to find out I got MVP was something special.”

Mekaylind Kilpatrick also had a strong performance for the Vikings, finishing fourth in the triple jump, fifth in the 400 meter dash and ninth in the 200-meter dash. Doriana Hill finished 14th in the 300-meter hurdles, Kenya Forbes went 10th in the discus and 16th in shot put, and Jakayah Summers placed 13th in the shot put and 22nd in the discus.

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