ACHS boys’ track, field state runners-up

The ACHS boys’ track and field team stands with its runners-up trophy after the state meet at the Bernie Moore Stadium in Baton Rouge Saturday.

When you’re used to winning, the thought of losing could be scary. For the ACHS boys’ track and field team, finishing in the top two has become a tradition and fallen short of it doesn’t look to near as it grows stronger each season. ACHS’ latest success came when it scored 56 points to beat Ouachita Christian by one point and finish as runners-up at the 1A LHSAA State track and field meet in Baton Rouge on Friday.

“It’s amazing, I’m very proud of the boys and the girls,” coach Rocky Capello said. “The weather was just tough. That cold weather really takes it out on you but the kids gutted it out and our goal was to come out in the top two.”

The Bulldogs were bested Southern Lab’s 70 points but ACHS gave the now state champs a run for their money up until the last event.

Leading the boy’s team was sophomore Zach Capello, who capped the season off the exact way he started it, with dominance. Capello finished first in the 1600-meter run in a time of 4:45.79, second in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:06.53, and first in t the 3200-meter run in a time of 10:23.38.

“It feels awesome,” Zach Capello said. “I’m really proud of my team, especially coming out here with four guys and giving it our best effort and squeezing it out by one point.”

Junior Jesse Hood was the only other Bulldog to get a gold medal in an event after winning the 800-meter run with a time of 2:05.29, beating Zach Capello by a little more than a second. Hood also took home a second place medal in the 1600-meter run in a time of 4:48.04.

Two other boys competed for the state runners-up at meet, senior Thomas Gros and Trey Capello. Gros finished fifth in the javelin throw with a distance of 159’5”, and he took the bronze medal in the 200-meter sprint with a time of 22.33. Trey Capello finished fifth in the 3200-meter race with a time of 10:50.28.

With only four competitors, the boys were able to finish as runners-up but the ACHS girl’s team had a solid performance at the state meet as well. It finished 12th overall in the state tallying 15 points at the meet.

“(The program is) definitely going in the right direction,” Rocky Capello said. “We want to keep it going in that direction. That’s our goal, to always bring home a trophy. You can’t always win because you never know what’s going to happen, but anytime you can win a first or second place trophy and it’s 50 other teams in the state, you have to be proud of the kids and how hard they work.”

The girl’s team had strong performance by senior Nancy Guillot, who finished eighth in the javelin throw with a mark of 95’1”. Marianna Cuervo finished eighth in the 1600-meter run in a time of 6:11.29. Kayla Tripode finished ninth in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 22.74 seconds. Maerys Joseph finished seventh in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:42.88. Whitney Eure finished eight in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:43.15. The girls’ 400-meter relay team finished seventh with a time of 53.54 comprised of Brandy Landry, Gabby Klack, Jordynn Brown, and Guillot. Joseph finished fifth in the 400-meter run in a time of 1:05.09. 1600-meter relay team finished sixth with a time of 4:25.55 comprised of Catherine Eure, Whitney Eure, Victoria Eure, and Joseph.

Zach Capello added, “I’m just extremely proud of my team, it was a long productive day but I wouldn’t change anything. I’m thankful.”