More than a dozen LHS athletes set to compete at state meet

The Lejeune High School winter track team finished top three at the Coastal 8 Conference (1A/2A) meet at Heide Trask High School, Feb. 5.

The LHS boys got second place with gold medal-winning performances from Kyle Baldwin, Karl Benson, Niklas Cooper, Nicholas Presley and Tyler Shelton. Also medaling for the Devil Pups, who locked up second by more than 50 points, were Tyler Gilman, Kamrin Wisherd, Dylan Presson and Dillon Turner. Marcus Cooper, Ryan Miller and Preston Berthold earned points as well.

“I think this is the strongest we’ve ever been,” said Baldwin, a senior in his fourth year at LHS who will compete in pole vault and the 55-meter hurdles at the state meet. “I have noticed a lot more team cohesion.”

The LHS girls were two points shy of second. Skyler Kuncik, Elizabeth Schwend, Hailey Lamb and Madilyne Blanton earned silver medals. Dajanae Kelley and Emalee Reynolds won bronze medals for the Devil Pups, who also got points from Kilala Stone, Anna Perdue and Aspen Peterson.

The Croatan boys’ and girls’ teams each got first. Heide Trask joined Lejeune and Croatan in the top three.

Despite the transient nature of athletes at LHS, assistant coach Amanda Tungett said that having the track athletes welcome newcomers with open arms has been huge for the program.

“Every person that comes in, they are totally accepting of right off the bat,” Tungett said. “They’re a good group, and we have a lot of fun.”

More than a dozen Devil Pups will compete for a state championship in Winston-Salem on Feb. 15.

OF NOTE: Kyle Baldwin was named the conference’s most outstanding male track & field athlete for the winter season. Dixon’s Tamarius Ramsey was named most outstanding male track athlete.