Griffin boys claim AA State Title

HOPKINS – Fairfield Central opened the 2A meet at 9 a.m. on Saturday at Lower Richland High School under a cloudy, cool sky.

The Griffins dominated with four first place individual finishes as the boys’ team took home the state title with a score of 83. Greer Middle College Charter finished in second with 58 points.

Fairfield sprinter Jayden Boyd claimed three individual state titles on the day, and distance-runner Hank White picked up his second title in a row in the 800 meter run.

In such an individual sport, it was the combination of finishes from all Griffin boys that put Fairfield in position to clinch the SCHSL AA state title.

The 4×100 relay events were first, and the Griffin boys had a quick start to the day.

The boys’ relay team of Chris Jackson, Jamie Brown, Chris Pearson and Tydarion Grier ran in lane four in the second heat. 

“There’s the gun. I look for them to handle business here, as long as they handle the handoffs,” the commentator on SC Milesplit said of the Griffins.

It looked to be a tight race between Fairfield in lane four and Silver Bluff in lane three, but Gray Collegiate pulled ahead in the final leg to take first place at 41.75. The Griffins finished on their heels at 41.81 for second place and scored their first team points of the day.

Following the 4×800 relays (with no one competing from Fairfield), the track events paused for about an hour as the field events got underway.

Fairfield quickly stacked up more points in long jump as Jayden Boyd got his first of three top finishes on the day. Boyd hit the 6.95 meter mark in long jump to take first place.

Kristian Golden earned his first points of the day for Fairfield with a fifth place finish in long jump at 6.73 meters.

Jalen Swilley got on the board next for Fairfield. He placed fifth in shot put at 14.81 meters.

Then Golden struck again, this time in high jump as he pulled a third place finish at 1.85 meters.

Back on the track, Christian Hingleton picked up points in the 110 meter hurdles with his season-best time of 16.22 for eighth place.

Boyd and Grier hit the track next for the 100 meter dash, and Boyd picked up his second state title on the day.

“Lane four is going to be the winner,” the commentator said. “Looks like Jayden Boyd is going to win this one – and he does. Fairfield Central takes first and third. Chance to pick up a bunch of points there.”

Boyd took first place at 10.51, his fastest time of the season, and Grier’s 10.85 finish put him in third place.

Hank White ran in the 1600 meter event next. He pulled an eighth place finish at 4:40.53 to add some points to Fairfield’s tally.

The 400 meter dash followed, and this time it was Jamie Brown who picked up points for the Griffins. Brown finished in fifth place at 50.60.

Following the 400 meter run and 400 meter hurdles, White returned to the track after a little break for the 800 meter event.

White finished in first at 1:57.59 mark, almost a full second ahead of the second place finisher. White’s finish clenched his individual back-to-back state titles in the event. It was his fastest time and a new school record.

The Griffins followed that first place finish with another, racking up more points late in the day as Boyd and Jamie Brown returned for the 200 meter run.

Boyd set a new Fairfield Central school record in the 200 meter at 21.63 in the team’s first meet of the season, and he bested that time in his last meet of the season. Boyd took first at 21.34 seconds and claimed his third individual state title on the day.

Brown added points for Fairfield with his seventh place finish in the event and his season-best time of 22.63.

Fairfield’s 4×400 meter relay team finished the day with more points. Nate Brown, White, Kenyan Douglas and Jamie Brown pulled their season-best time of 3:27.82 for second place.

Hank White, left, & Jayden Boyd | Contributed

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