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2014 Super Six track and field: Athlete bios

BOYS

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GAC’s Micah Abernathy

Micah Abernathy

School: Greater Atlanta Christian

Class: Junior

GPA: 3.2

Event/personal record: 400-meter run/48.2 seconds; 200/22.1

Nickname: Big Meeks

Favorite subject in school: Math

College choices: Oregon, Ohio State

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Music, playlist “Game Time”

Race or field event you would never do: 300 hurdles

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Best Vines

Twitter handle: @Mabernathy04

Funniest teammate: Julian Wright

Role model: My brother

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: GAC’s Darius Slayton

Noteworthy: Won Class AA state title in the 400-meter run

Coach Brad Kinser’s take: “Micah is a talented athlete who is not afraid to push himself to get better. Micah has been running track from a young age and has had great success in summer track and he also had an older brother who was a great track athlete. That experience plus talent and hard work make him an outstanding competitor in track and also the football field. He can run anything from the 800 on down and comes into this season as the defending state champion in the 400 meters. Beyond all of that, Micah is a quality young man who makes our team better for being the person that he is.”


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Parkview’s John Patterson

John Patterson

School: Parkview

Class: Senior

GPA: 3.6

Event/personal record: Discus 163 feet, 7 inches, Shot put 49-9.5

Nickname: None

Favorite subject in school: Bible class

Favorite movie: “Get Him to the Greek”

College choices: Wofford College

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Prayer

Race or field event you would never do: 3,200-meter run

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: @t0ddlawson

Twitter handle: @johnpatterson6

Funniest teammate: Jeremy Lacey

Role model: Father John Patterson Jr.

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Shiloh’s Grant Swinton

Noteworthy: Class AAAAAA state runner-up in the discus

Coach Matt Henson’s take: “John has been an amazing ambassador for Parkview in academics and athletics. We are excited about final season in track and look forward to seeing him finish strong.”


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GAC’s Darius Slayton

Darius Slayton

School: GAC

Class: Junior

GPA: 3.0

Event/personal record: 200 meters/22.0 seconds

Nickname: D-Slay

Favorite subject in school: English

Favorite movie: Transformers series

College choices: Auburn, Georgia, Vanderbilt, Florida, etc.

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Listen to music

Race or field event you would never do: 800-meter run

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless

Twitter handle: youngslay_2

Funniest teammate: Julian Wright

Role model: Parents

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: GAC’s Micah Abernathy

Noteworthy: Won Class AA state title in the 100-meter run and 200 last season

Coach Brad Kinser’s take: “Darius is a gifted athlete who although being relatively new to track really came into his own last season. Watching his sister the last few years win several state championships inspired him to believe he could do that as well. Darius has a beautiful natural stride and when you couple that with hard work and great competitive drive — you have a great track athlete. Darius is a truly natural athlete who is the defending state champion in the 100 and 200 meters and is also getting a lot of attention for his football ability. Darius is a quality young man who’s humble leadership makes our team better.”


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Shiloh’s Grant Swinton

Grant Swinton

School: Shiloh

Class: Senior

Event/personal record: 400/47.30; 200/21.29

Favorite subject in school: Math

Favorite movie: “Never Back Down”

College choice: Mississippi State University

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Joke with friends before a race to relax and clear my head mentally

Race or field event you would never do: 1,600-meter run

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Chief Keef

Twitter handle: @GrantSwinton_

Funniest teammate: Aymeer Taylor

Role model: Mother and Coach Denzel Abrams

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Shiloh’s Jeremy Hampton, Jeremy McDuffie, Brian Kamau

Noteworthy: Won Class AAAAAA state title in the 400 and was sixth in the 200

Coach Rob Blaszkiewicz’s take: “Grant is an incredible athlete and presents a dilemma for any track coach. He excels in so many events and yet we can only enter him in a limited amount of events. Of course, he is an elite sprinter with his 1st place finish in the 400 at last year’s state meet. He also took home a sixth place finish in the 200 in that same meet. Grant is also a key part of our relay teams that are some of the fastest in the state. On top of that, he is one of the better horizontal jumpers on the team. This just speaks to his tremendous talent as an athlete. Grant will be sorely missed at Shiloh and will attend Mississippi State on a track and field scholarship next year.”


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Mill Creek’s Tyler Woodrome

Tyler Woodrome

School: Mill Creek

Class: Senior

Event/personal record: 1,600-meter run/4:13.41; 800/1:53.18

Nickname: Woody

Favorite subject in school: Math

Favorite movie: “Anchorman 2”

College choice: University of Tennessee

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Shot of honey

Race or field event you would never do: Pole vault

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Andrew Wheating

Twitter handle: @TylerWoodrome

Funniest teammate: Josh Skidmore

Role model: Andrew Wheating

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Mill Creek’s Eric Westog

Noteworthy: Won Class AAAAAA state title in the 1,600-meter run

Coaches Rik Moore’s take: “Tyler Woodrome is a talented athlete that strives to train and work harder every year. Tyler loves to compete and to race every time he steps on the track to compete. Tyler is a great role model for our younger athletes and a vital part of our program.”


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Lanier’s Devin Valentine

Devin Valentine

School: Lanier

Class: Senior

Event/personal record: Triple Jump/48-feet, 10 inches

Nickname: DValley

Favorite subject in school: History

Favorite movie: “Django”

College choices: Louisville, North Carolina

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Eat, Pray and eat a pack of skittles

Race or field event you would never do: Pole Vault

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Jorrdan Jones

Twitter handle: n/a

Funniest teammate: n/a

Role model: Stedman Bailey and my mom

Noteworthy: Won Class AAAA state title in the triple jump

Coach Shawn Cahill’s take: “Devin is a very confident, self-motivated athlete. He is a great asset to our team from a leadership standpoint as he leads by example. He is the type of kid that will tell you what he is going to do and then back it up.”

GIRLS

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Collins Hill’s Bola Hambola

Bola Hambolu

School: Collins Hill

Class: Junior

GPA: 3.967

Event/personal record: Triple Jump 38 feet, Long Jump 17 feet, 5 inches

Nickname: Bobo

Favorite subject in school: Language arts

Favorite movie: “The Best Man Holiday”

College choices: Harvard, Columbia, Duke

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Subway before every meet and good luck socks

Race or field event you would never do: High Jump

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Drake

Twitter handle: BolaaH_

Funniest teammate: Matthew Frazier

Role Model: Beyonce Knowles

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Collins Hill’s Ashia Blackshear

Noteworthy: Placed fourth at state meet in the triple jump

Coach Richard Ramsey’s take: “Bola is an incredible young lady with many gifts and talents. She is an fantastic student, teammate and competitor. Bola has really enjoyed competing in the jumps and has worked really hard to push her marks even further this year. Bola has an infectious personality, and a competitive drive that makes her an ideal teammate. I am really lucky to get to work with her and can’t wait to see what she does this spring.”


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Mill Creek’s Lauren Hovis

Lauren Hovis

School: Mill Creek

Class: Senior

GPA: 4.0

Event/personal record: 1,600/5:05; 3,200/11:03

Nickname: Hovster

Favorite subject in school: Latin

Favorite movie: “Pride and Prejudice”

College choice: Georgia

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Eat honey nut cheerios and braid my hair.

Race or field event you would never do: Pole Vault

Favorite person to follow on Twitter: Tim Keller

Twitter handle: @hovislauren

Funniest teammate: Erin Martz

Role model: My Parents

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Peachtree Ridge’s Addy Lippitt, Brookwood’s Lauren Brennan and Providence’s Tayler Tuttle

Noteworthy: Placed fifth at state meet in 3,200-meter run

Coach Jed Hodges’ take: “Lauren’s demeanor, work ethic and academic excellence set her apart. She has been a great role model for teammates. She makes Mill Creek proud.”


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Duluth’s Jazmyn Johnson

Jazmyn Johnson

School: Duluth

Class: Senior

Event/personal record: High Jump 5 feet, 7 inches

Nickname: The Bakery

Favorite subject in school: Math

Favorite movie: “Insidious”

College Choices: Kennesaw State, Limestone, Georgia State

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Always listen to rap music and I don’t talk to people

Race or field event you would never do: 800-meter run

Funniest teammate: Thomas Harris

Role Model: Father Billy ‘White Shoes’ Johnson

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Peachtree Ridge’s Megan Henderson and Kendra Purifoye

Noteworthy: Runner-up at Class AAAAAA state meet in the long jump and high jump


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Peachtree Ridge’s Kendra Purifoye

Kendra Purifoye

School: Peachtree Ridge

Class: Senior

GPA: 3.2

Event/personal record: 100 Hurdles/14.5 seconds; 300 Hurdles/45.4 seconds

Nickname: Ken

Favorite subject in school: Social Sciences

Favorite movie: “The Lion King”

College choices: Long Beach State, OSU, Arizona State University

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Wearing crazy socks and eating candy

Race or field event you would never do: 3,200-meter run

Funniest teammate: Devyn Jones

Role model: Sanya Richards-Ross

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Duluth’s Jazmyn Johnson

Noteworthy: Placed sixth at state meet in the 100 hurdles

Coach Ken Dennard’s take: “Kendra is an outstanding and versatile athlete. She is very competitive and dedicated to her many sports. Since a young athlete, Kendra has displayed qualities of leadership, responsibility and hard work. I am honored to have know and coached her.”


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Wesleyan’s Caroline Reed

Caroline Reed

School: Wesleyan

Class: Senior

Event/personal record: 1,600: 5:20/3,200m: 11:27

Nickname: Creed

Favorite subject in school: World History

Favorite movie: “She’s The Man”

College choices: Furman, Clemson, Georgia

Pre-meet ritual or superstition: Pray and listen to music

Race or field event you would never do: Pole vault. Those people are fearless!!

Funniest teammate: Clarence (aka John Walker) and Landyn Duley

Role model: My sister, Kylie Reed, for her determination, perseverance, and tremendous faith

Aside from yourself, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Providence’s Tayler Tuttle

Noteworthy: Placed second at Class AA state meet in the 1,600-meter run and 3,200

Coach Candler Baxley’s take: “It’s really difficult to sum up in a few sentences what Caroline means to our track program and our school community. She’s obviously a great runner, but what’s more impressive about her is the type of person she is. Her athletic accomplishments are just a small sample of the mark that she has left on Wesleyan. It’s been an honor to Coach Caroline the last few years, and I know that all of her coaches and teammates are looking forward to seeing her have a great senior season.”


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Buford’s Corey Staples

Corey Staples

School: Buford

Class: Junior

GPA: 3.5

Event/personal record: Triple jump/37 fee, 1 inch; long jump/17.2

Nickname: The Black Stallion

Favorite subject in school: AP Psychology

Favorite movies: “Meet the Robinsons”, “Despicable Me”, and “Toy Story 3”

College choices: Undecided

Pre-game ritual or superstition: Pray and listen to Katy Perry

Race or event you would never do: You couldn’t pay me to run the 3,200-meter event

Twitter handle: @coreystaples4

Funniest teammate: Kiki Mincey

Role Model: My mother

Aside from you, the best current Gwinnett track athlete is: Buford’s David Curry

Noteworthy: Placed third at Class AAA state meet in the triple jump

Coach David Snell’s take: “Corey is an amazing person that exudes excellence on the inside and out. She has really only been jumping (Triple and Long) for a few years and has a bright future in track. She is highly competitive and loves her team. She performs her best when the stage is the biggest.”