by Joseph Halm of Nola.com (edited)
When the final race ended at the J. Keefe Hecker Newman Invitational at Tad Gormley Stadium on Friday, the winner was long decided.
The John Curtis girls teams built a large early lead and never looked back.
“We did a pretty good job tonight,” Curtis girls track coach Eric Smith said. “This is a nice meet where we were able to put some people in different events to work out some things. It was a good tune-up for district. We had some basketball girls come out and put up some good times as well. It’s a good building block.”
Curtis finished with 144 points, while Newman was second with 102 points. Mount Carmel ended up in third with 81.
The team victory also came with several personal bests for the Patriots. Najah Gibson finished second in the 800 meters with a time of 2:28.84 for a new personal record. She was bested by teammate Laila Jackson’s 2:15.99. Raven Nunnery and Kali Magana set personal bests in the 100 and 200 meters, while senior Zoe Curtis won Overall and Field MVP honors with 28 points, all coming in field events.
The honors didn’t stop there as Nunnery and Jackson shared Track MVP honors with 22.5 points each.
While the Patriots were dominant, host Newman set a pair of school records starting with Cecile Oliver’s 10-foot, 1-inch clearance in the pole vault. The Greenies 4×200-meter relay set another school record with a time of 1:47.46, which was good for second behind Curtis.