Cyclones close out season strong at TSSAA Spring Fling

Published 12:07 pm Thursday, May 23, 2024

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MURFREESBORO – Five Cyclone athletes aimed to close out their 2024 track and field season strong when they traveled to MTSU’s Dean Hayes Stadium in Murfreesboro for the Division I, Class A-AA TSSAA State Track & Field Championships.

It was a great day for the athletes as all five earned All-State honors in their respective events.

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Diesel Russell was one of the top finishers of the day, claiming second place in the discus event, finishing just a few feet short of winning the event. Russell’s meet-best was 157-07.

John Siepert closed out his career as a Cyclone with a personal record in the 300-meter hurdles, taking third place. It was Siepert’s first year competing in the event.

Jeremiah Norris claimed a fifth-place finish in the 400-meter dash. Coach Matthew Campbell noted that the top five in the event were all within a second of being crowned the state champion.

With the efforts of the three Cyclones, the team claimed 15th place out of 46 teams, finishing with a total of 18 points.

In girls’ action, Jamira Smalls was holding onto second place going into the final throw before settling for third place on the podium with a toss of 34-8.00 in the shot put.

Freshman Liahna Nave had the longest throw of the day in the discus, but a small foot foul cost her a state title as she settled for fourth place in the event.

With these two finishes, the Lady Cyclones finished 15th as a team out of 41 teams, with 15 points.

“I am proud of all of our kids and the way that they competed,” said Campbell. “To have all of them place in the top five in their events was incredible. Many of them were right there in the running to be the state champion. I think that makes them hungry for next year.”

Campbell mentioned that both Nave and Russell were eager to start preparing for the 2025 season right after the meet. The head coach also looks forward to having Smalls and Norris back, but admittedly wished that Siepert had another year on the team.

“All of these athletes come back next year and get another chance at it,” said Campbell. “John is a senior that we all wish we could have another year with. He did an amazing job getting third in the state with a PR, and this is his first year ever doing hurdles. Excited to see what he does at the next level, and we will definitely miss him next year.”