Northwest Middle School wins track title

Northwest Middle School wins track title
May 26
06:45 2016



Earlier this month, the boys track team at Northwest Middle School capped off a perfect season by winning the annual city/county championship meet held at Reagan High School.

Every year, the 15 middle schools in the district come together to compete in the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Track and Field Championship. This year with only 10 members competing, the Falcons were able to run away with the 2016 title. While a number of schools in the district had teams with 25 or 30 student athletes, Northwest head coach Ernest Riley said he felt confident that he could get the job done with his best 10.

Riley mentioned in past years Northwest came within points of winning the title, but always seemed to come up short. Riley said it feels good to finally add to the banner that hangs inside the school’s gym.

”It’s an amazing feeling to finally get over that hump,” smiled Riley. “I’m glad I was able to get the eighth graders a championship before they go on to high school.”

When discussing the undefeated championship season, Riley gave all the credit to the hard work and dedication of his students. Riley, who has coached track at various levels for more than 30 years, said he knew at the beginning of the season he had something special. He said, “At the start of the season, I told them if they came to practice and worked hard, they could win it all.

“They came in and worked hard, now they are champions,” he said. “I am proud of them all because they never gave up and continued to listen.”

Riley noted what put them over the top in the championship meet was the quick feet of eighth grader Clayton Durham in the 800 meter run. Durham posted a time of 2 minutes 14 seconds, more than four seconds faster than the second place finisher. For finishing in first place, 10 points was added to the Falcons overall score, pushing them into first with 58 points. That was enough to hold off arch rival Southeast, who was a crowd favorite going into the meet.

D.J. Moyer, Taznae Woods, Jordan Hunter and Jamari Slade also played a role in the Falcons championship run. Jordan Smith and James Clyburn contributed points during the meet as well.

Connor Barron, Elden Campbell, and Devon Pulliam had stellar regular seasons for the Falcons.

Principal Alfreda Smith, who was on hand to watch her scholar athletes win the title said the entire faculty and student body is proud to be crowned champions.

“We have some amazing athletes here at Northwest who are doing some outstanding things academically as well.”

Smith also applauded Coach Riley for the work he does with the team. She said Riley uses a method that prepares students for life in the real world.

“In addition to teaching content, our teachers are preparing students for life beyond school,” she said. “The student athletes here aren’t just competing, they are learning important life lessons such as dedication and hard work. It’s important that the students are able to learn outside the textbook.”

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