Congratulations to Senior Rayford James who is current ranked nationally and state-wide according to DyeStat. In the 800-meters James is ranked 34th in the United States and 8th in Florida across all classifications. In the 1600-meters James is ranked 57th in the United States and 10th in Florida across all classifications. There are over 17,000 high schools across the United States with times submitted for ranking.
Congratulations to the Generals Track and Field team on their accomplishments this weekend at the FSU Relays. All of the Generals who competed in the FSU Relays set personal records in their races. The Generals were led off Friday night with Senior Rayford James taking on some of the best 800m runners in the state and the country. Rayford didn't disappoint finishing 5th place just behind two of the top times in the United States this season. The winner, Nick Morken of Niceville, won the 800m with a 1:53.45 (US #2 Prep time this season) with James finishing with a 1:55.82.
On Saturday the girls kicked things off with Arielle O'Neal and Brenee Cummings competing in the Girls 1600m Consolation races. O'Neal was able to improve on her school record time by running a season best and personal record of 6:20.38. Brenee shattered her personal best by posting her first time under 7-minutes for the 1600m with a 6:56.20.
Following up the girls strong performances the boys showed improvement on their own. Sophomore Dominic Williams improved on his personal best by running a 4:32.60 finishing 9th overall of 102 runners in the 1600m consolation races. Sophomore Buay Deng set a personal record, running with his shoe untied, finishing with a 5:04.72. John Hutton, Chris Curry and Kris Small then finished 1st, 2nd and 4th respectively in heat 6, all setting new personal records.
Finishing up in the 1600m Finals was Senior Rayford James. James was boxed in early in the race, but kept his cool patiently waiting for the opportunity to make his move. James was able to find the opening on the last lap of the race, where he moved outside with about 250m to go. James was able to out sprint Kaleb McLeod (Trinity Christian) and Conner Ferrentino (Freedom HS) down the final straightaway to finish 8th overall and set a new Robert E. Lee High School record. James' 4:19.25 finish breaks the 45 year old record held by Jack Lanier. Lanier set the Robert E. Lee High School record with a 4:21.1 one-mile run in 1968, which converts to a 4:19.64 based on USATF and NFHS conversion rules. The previous best non-converted 1600m time for the Generals was run by 2008 FHSAA 1600m State Champion Jonathan Esteban, who ran a 4:21.83.