After Pope John Paul II’s 400-meter relay team placed third, PJP II senior Golden Tate suffered a hamstring injury approximately 80 meters into the 100-meter dash. Tate fell to the ground, resulting in a last-place finish in the six-man race (due to one runner not competing because of an injury and another who was disqualified due to a false start).Brentwood Academy junior Chris Jordan won the event in a time of 11.13 seconds. Golden Tate had the top qualifying time in the 100-meter dash and 200-meter dash, which he was slated to compete in with his brother Wesley later on Friday evening. Senior Golden Tate, a Notre Dame football signee, was the meet’s only other double individual event winner. Tate won the 100 (10.93) and the 200 (22.33). The only reason he ran is becuase his baseball season was cut short by a thumb injury. So he decided to win two events. And they say there is no speed at the Wide Receiver Position in 2007!
He was also supposed to be a part of the Knights’ 800-meter relay team, which was not able to compete due to Golden Tate’s injury. PJP II’s 800-meter relay squad won the state title a year ago.“It’s disappointing,” pointed out Wesley Tate, the only underclassmen on the Knight relay teams (which also included Golden Tate, Darrell Wallace and Tyler Peoples). “We won the state last year in the four-by-two. I think we could have won, but things like that happen. It’s kind of unfortunate.”Ironically, it was an injury to Golden Tate’s thumb that ended his senior baseball campaign in late March and prompted him to join the track and field team.
Tate, a Notre Dame signee who has been one of the top prep football prospects in the nation, will be playing football and baseball for the Irish.PJP II could have still fielded a team in that event by using an alternate runner, but Pope John Paul II’s alternate was injured prior to the state meet, leaving the Knights without another option.“I’m disappointed for the kids,” explained PJP II track and field coach Roger Jones. “Golden will be fine, but the other kids won’t get to do anything else. They were only here for the relays.”The Knights had the top qualifying time (1:30.28) in the 800-meter relay and the second-best qualifying mark (42.69) in the 400-meter relay.However, Pope John Paul II High’s 42.86 finished behind first-place Memphis University School (42.29) and second-place Brentwood Academy (42.66).“I thought we had a shot in the four-by-two and the four-by-one,” noted Jones. “We ran a decent time. Unfortunately, two teams ran faster.”
Wesley Tate missed his brother in the 200-meter dash, but it didn’t seem to have much of a negative effect on his performance. The sophomore finished second, in a time of 22.59.The brothers were slated to run alongside each other, in lanes three and four.
“I thought I could have run a little better, but overall, I’m pleased,” said Wesley Tate, whose personal best in the 200 is 22.3 seconds. “Someone not being in lane four hurt me a little bit, because I push myself a little more in the curve. But you can’t make excuses.”Both Tates were making their first appearance in the state track meet.PJP II finished with 17 points, resulting in a 12th-place finish among the Division II boys squads. The Knights finished 11th a year ago.