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Johnson County Tennis and Track off to a good start

Longhorns Austin Mounts (10) in the pack at Elizabethton Thursday night.
Photo by Joey Icenhour

By Beth Cox
Sports Writer

Track and tennis are off to a good start for JCHS. Last week, both teams traveled to Elizabethton to compete with track and field playing Tuesday and the tennis team on Thursday.
Both teams had some players come out and set a standard of excellence for themselves and their teammates.
Tennis has a strong girls’ team with Hailey Rider and Stephanie Knight. Pittman also has a strong girls’ doubles team; all three won against Elizabethton, which gave the JCHS tennis team the overall win against the powerful Cyclones.
Coach Zach Pittman said that while he continues to see improvements in the boys’ team, he expects some conference wins from the girls. “It seems we are well on our way,” he said.
Track and field Coach Penny Gentry took her team to compete Tuesday. It was the program’s first event of the season, and Gentry felt good about her team’s accomplishments, with a couple of players breaking their own records.
Grinnan Walker finished 10th out of 34 in the 100m with a 12.39 personal best for the junior athlete. Walker also set another personal best with the 200m, finishing ninth out of 32 with a time of 25.76. Drew Woerner is new to track and field but proved to have what it takes to compete. In his first race, he placed 6th out of 12 in the 800m with a 2:36.56 time. For the girls, Raven Turan finished 11th out of 31 with a 14.75 in the 100m.
Walker also decided to try shot put at a distance of 35 feet this year, placing 10th out of 22. Jacob Earp and Aiden Sluder were first-timers at the throwing discus and performed nicely. Earp threw 75 feet 6 inches and Sluder 61-3. Brooklyn Deyton and Coe Gladden led the team for discus throwing for the females.
Overall, Gentry was pleased with her team.
“I was proud of my team’s performances, she said. “They were a little nervous before we started, but they worked through it and did great.” Gentry concluded, “I have a good group of players, and I feel they will do well and just keep improving.”