Top Catholic school athletes go for the gold in track

brocato    St. Paul’s Zachary Albright is the man to beat in the Class 5A 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs, but the senior runner could be in the race of his life in the eight-lap event with three competitors whose times are comparable.
    While Albright, who qualified with a 4:21.58, has no peers in the 1,600-meter event, his 9:27.57 time in the 3,200 will be challenged by Joseph St. Cyr of Catholic High (9:29.66), Jesuit’s Neal Fitzpatrick (9:31.01) and his own St. Paul’s teammate, D.C. Lipani (9:33.23), who is the only runner to beat Fitzpatrick in a duel this season.
    The four will meet in the closing events of Saturday’s championship finals at LSU’s Bernie Moore Stadium.    
    But two days earlier, Holy Rosary’s Reid Dimaggio was scheduled to compete in four events in the boys’ Class C meet, and he was the top qualifier in two.
    Dimaggio recorded the best times in his class in the 800-meter run (2:18.30) and 1,600-meter run (5:00.51). He also is the No. 3 qualifier in the 3,200-meter run and will try to improve his fourth-place standings in the 300-meter hurdles.
    Six other local Catholic school athletes and two St. Augustine relay teams lead class qualifying in their specialty events.   
    St. Augustine football phenom Leonard Fournette, who figures to be the nation’s No. 1 football recruit, leads the boys’ Class 4A  200-meter dash with a time of 21.57 and joins Errol Brown, Felix Farinas and Graegg Gilbert on the 800-meter relay team that leads the field with a time of 1:26.83.
    A battle could ensue between St. Aug and Edna Karr in the 400-meter relay. The Knight’s time of 41.37 is just fractions behind Karr’s 41.35.
    Fournette is also the No. 2 qualifier in the 100 with a time of 10.68.
    Mary Grace Gitz’s leap of 5 feet, 7 inches leads the field in the girls’ Class 5A high jump, and her St. Scholastica teammate, Madison McDaniel (2:20.36), leads qualifiers in the 800-meter run.             Cabrini’s Tayla Celestine qualified at the top of the Class 4A girls’ high jump with a 5-6 effort. She also qualified to compete in the 100- and 300-meter hurdles.
    The other top qualifier from local Catholic schools is Sacred Heart’s Ellie Silva, who leads the Class 2A field with a jump of 5 feet, 4 inches.
    With a regional time of 5:18.46, Carley Boyce of St. Scholastica is the No. 2 qualifier in the girls’ Class 5A 1,600-meter run.
    Xavier Prep’s Shannon Ray ran a 25.38 to qualify second in the Class 3A girls’ 200-meter dash, while St. Mary Academy’s Kettera Harris qualified second in the Class 3A 400-meter dash. Harris is also entered in the 200.
    Mikaela Campbell of Sacred Heart hopes to improve on her second-best time of 47.66 in the Class 2A 300-meter hurdles, and Danshawn Jenkins of De La Salle is the No. 3 qualifier in the Class 3A boys’
javelin throw with a best mark of 171-feet, 1 inch.
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