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Fleet-footed Wolves qualify for state

NORCROSS -- The speed that helped Buford win another Class AA state football championship last fall was showcased even more dramatically Tuesday.

Unhindered by heavy gear, the Wolves really turned it on.

The fastest of the fast for Buford at the Region 6-AA track and field championships was C.J. Moore.

The sophomore won the 100 meters, placed second in the 200 and anchored the winning 400 relay team during the final day of competition at Greater Atlanta Christian.

That means Moore qualified for the upcoming state meet at Jefferson in three events after making it in two as a freshman.

The Wolves' 400 relay team was an all-football affair, with Moore joined by senior Tyshawn Holley and juniors Eric Barr and Seon Jones.

Buford was timed in 42.49 seconds, beating out Decatur. The Bulldogs ran 42.56.

"It's great to all be going to state," Moore said. "We ran a little faster in the preliminaries, but the time was good."

The Buford relay team missed qualifying for the state meet a year ago despite Moore's contributions. He came into this season as the defending region champ in the 100 and runner-up in the 200 -- and he repeated those finishes with times of 11.04 and 22.03.

Where Moore wants to improve is in his state finishes. He placed eighth in the 100 a year ago and didn't make the finals in the 200 as a freshman.

"I hope I can do better," Moore said. "I think I can."

Relay members Barr and Holley each made the state meet in a second event, placing second in the 100 and 110 hurdles, respectively. Barr finished behind Moore in the 100 with a time of 11.17, while Holley ran 15.37 as he was just edged out by Blessed Trinity's Andrew Smith in the hurdles.

Jamal English, also a football player, was Buford's other state qualifier. The junior placed second in the 300 hurdles with a time of 40.69.

Buford was last in the eight-school field after Saturday's field events, but ended up placing fourth with 84 points -- 72 of them scored Tuesday after the meet's conclusion was pushed back a day because of rain.

Westminster, the defending Class AA state team champion, coasted to the region title. The Wildcats had 138 points to 106 for second-place Decatur. Lovett was just ahead of Buford with 84 points.

Host GAC didn't have anyone qualify for the state meet on Tuesday, with Lavondre Nelson just missing in the 100. He was edged out by Barr's strong finish, running 11.25.

Josh Simpson of Buford also just missed a trip to Jefferson. He was third in the 800 with a time of 2:03.07. Second place was 2:02.47.

Decatur's Cameron Parker received the trophy for high-point honors in the meet after winning the 200 and 400 on Tuesday. He recorded 26 points for the Bulldogs.