With the 2001 track and field season approaching regionals, some of the area's top talent will give a preview of what could be a state-meet atmosphere today. The Cline Stansberry Invitational will feature 14 teams today when the meet begins at 4 p.m. at Cline Stansberry Stadium in West Union.
Headlining the list is another showdown between Class AA-A's top two girls teams, Doddridge County and Grafton. In the latest RunWV.com coaches' poll, the Bulldogs were ranked No. 1, followed by the Bearcats.
The two most recently faced each other at the Ritchie County Relays, where Doddridge County finished first, 55 points ahead of second place Grafton. The two have occupied the top two spots for nearly the entire season and figure to battle for the Class AA-A state title.
Grafton, which won this season's girls state cross-country championship, features several of the state's top distance runners. The Bearcats have dominated the 800, 1,600 and 3,200-meter runs this season. Junior Sherri Flohr has the second-best performance in the 800 (2:20.95) and 1,600 (5:17.93) this season, and her time of 11:56.5 is third best in the 3,200. Teammate Heather McDaniel ranks fifth in the 800 (2:31.6), fourth in the 1,600 (5:32.8) and fifth in the 3,200 (12:14.6), while teammate Megan Docherty (2:29.21) is ranked third in the 800.
But as dominating as the Bearcats are in distance runs, the Bulldogs have owned a stranglehold on field events.
Arguably no team has dominated an event the way Doddridge County does the pole vault. Senior Lisa Davis has the state's top performance, clearing 10-feet, 6-inches, while teammates Nicole White (10-0) and Karen Kellar (9-0) are ranked second and third, respectively.
The Bulldogs' Judi Rose has the second-best throw in the discus at 119-8.25. In the high jump, Doddridge County's Tiffany Sutton (5-4) is just ahead of Grafton's Ginny Keener (5-2).
In the 100 high hurdles, the Bulldogs' Jordan Walker and Lori Coffman could get a push from Keener. Walker currently has the state's top time in the 300 low hurdles at 49.05.
Also participating in the meet are Bridgeport, Liberty, Lincoln, Notre Dame, Robert C. Byrd, South Harrison, Williamstown, Ritchie, St. Marys, University, Philip Barbour and North Marion.