Staff Photo: Brendan Sullivan Greater Atlanta Christian's Kayin Mujahid executes her throw during the girls discus event of the Class 2A State Sectionals track meet at Greater Atlanta Christian School in Norcross Saturday. Mujahid placed third in the event with a throw of 110-07.
NORCROSS -- The main goal of a state sectional track and field meet is usually pretty simple -- just make sure to qualify as many individuals or relay teams for the upcoming state meets as possible.
And to be sure, Greater Atlanta Christian and Wesleyan both qualified plenty of boys and girls for their upcoming state meet during Saturday's Class AA State Sectional B at GAC's Spartan Stadium.
But the simple objective wasn't enough for several of those individuals, particularly those from GAC, with eight different events being won by a Spartan.
"It was a big day," GAC head coach Brad Kinser said. "Last week at (the) Region (6-AA) meet, we were coming off spring break. We get a week of practice under our belt, and it showed. It was a great day."
Perhaps no one had a better day than senior Maileka Slayton, who had a record-setting day in sweeping the sprint events with wins in the 100- and 200-meter dashes and ran on both winning Spartan teams in the 400 and 1,600 relays.
Slayton's sprint times of 11.83 seconds in the 100 and 24.38 in the 200 not only set two personal bests, they also set two new GAC school records, with the 200 time besting the 19-year-old state record of 24.41.
It was a performance Slayton said she did not expect when she woke up Saturday morning after limited sleep.
"We had prom last night," Slayton said. "So, I was actually exhausted (Saturday) morning. But I came out here to sectionals, and it's a big meet. So, it's time to step up."
And Slayton wasn't the only GAC girls individual to win an event, as Courtny Fair had the best state-qualifying leap of 35-feet, 1-inch to take the triple jump.
Slayton also wasn't the only Gwinnett record-setter on the day. In fact, she wasn't even the only member of her family to set a record Saturday.
Her younger brother, sophomore Darius Slayton, also set a new GAC school record with his winning time 22.08 seconds in the boys 200.
Teammate Micah Abernathy also took first place in the 400 with time of 50.45 seconds, and both Abernathy and Slayton were part of the Spartans 1,600 relay team that edged Wesleyan by .22 of a second.
But it was hardly a lost day for both the Wolves' boys and girls teams, particularly Katie Frerking, who had the other big story of the day in the girls competition besides Maileka Slayton.
The senior fought off a strong performance from GAC's Kayin Mujahid to not only the high jump, but set a new Wesleyan school record -- and tie the Class AA state meet record -- by clearing 5-8.
Frerking said it wasn't necessarily her plan to go after the record until the state meet May 10 in Albany, but the challenge from Mujahid prompted her to accelerate her timetable.
"(Wesleyan coach Candler) Baxley had given me a goal to get 5-7 (Saturday), ... and we were going to try to get (the state record) when we got to state," said Frerking, who broke her own school record of 5-6 . "But then, I was jumping against (Mujahid), and we both had gotten 5-6. Going into my last (attempt) at 5-8, I was like, 'If I don't get this, I think she'll beat me on (fewer) misses.' ... It was nice to have somebody pushing me like that. She was great."
Also having a great day for the Wolves was senior India Welton, who didn't quite surpass her personal best of 11-4, but did manage to clear 11-1 to lead a 1-2 Wesleyan sweep of the event with teammate Adrienne Lee, who has able to reach 9-6.
And there were plenty of other GAC and Wesleyan competitors who also qualified for their respective state meets during Saturday's action.
For the Spartans, Fair also qualified in the 300 hurdles and long jump, while Mujahid also worked her way to state in the 400 and discus and Stephanie Reynolds also qualified in three different individual events, making it in the triple jump, 100 hurdles and high jump.
Darius Slayton was also a multiple qualifier for the GAC boys thanks to his second-place finish in the 100, as was Miller Kettle, who qualified in both the 1,600 and 3,200.
Other GAC qualifiers included Zach Andrews (boys 100), Ben Hensley (1,600) and boys 400 relay team.
Wesleyan had four individuals qualify in multiple events, with Brittany Stevens (400, 800) and Caroline Reed (1,600 and 3,200) doing so for the girls, while Jordan Mack (100, high jump) and Charles Mack (200, 400) doing so for the boys.
The Wolves other qualifiers were Cairo Booker (girls 200), Kylie Reed (girls 800), Hannah Hoskin (girls high jump), girls 1,600 relay team, Jake Morris (boys 800) and Robert Kunce (boys 3,200).