Iron Horse girls, boys target track titles

The Philip Simmons High School girls’ track and field team has one of the best resumes in South Carolina in the past five years.
In 2019, just the second year of the school’s existence, the Iron Horse girls finished second in the state. In 2020, COVID-19 wiped out the season. The Iron Horses rebounded from the inactivity to win the Class AA state title in 2021, and repeated as state champs the following year.
Last year, the Iron Horses claimed second place in the Class AAA state meet as Seneca went home with the biggest trophy.
This year, coach Emma Santor and her squad will aim for the school’s third state championship in four years.
“We are super excited,” Santor said. “We have some awesome athletes who are dedicated to getting better every day when they step on the track. It’s a natural progression every year with new PRs (personal records) and school records. The girls buy into it when they see the results.”
Bad weather knocked out two meets last week, but the Iron Horses are back on track this week with a meet against Wando on Wednesday.
On Saturday, the Iron Horses will compete in the Mellow Mushroom Relays, which is hosted by Wando.
Every year, the Iron Horse girls have good depth, talent and desire.
Two of the top athletes on the team are distance runners Avah Mallek and Laura Perry. Mallek finished fifth in the state in the 1,600-meter run while Perry was one of the top seventh-graders in the country in the 3,200-meter run.
The Roush sisters, Ashley and Reagan, have the potential to finish 1-2 in the pole vault at the state championships. Ashley also runs the sprints and competes in the long jump.
Meanwhile, the Iron Horse boys have a new head coach in Ryan McCauley. He was promoted after serving as an assistant.
McCauley has his team working to lower their times and increase their distances because every second and inch can make a big difference in a big meet.
The Iron Horses know that from experience. Last spring, the Iron Horses finished fourth in the state as Dreher won the Class AAA crown. However, only 2.5 points separated the next three teams.  
The big news is the big man on campus is back for his final track season, Troy Stevenson, who will play football at Georgia Tech, will have a big role in the team’s success along with Corey Steed, Bryce Kinloch and KJ Asbury.
“Troy is great,” McCauley said. “He shows up, doesn’t say much and gets the job done. He’s sharp and focused.”
Stevenson was third in the high jump at the state meet last year and was seventh in the long jump. Kinloch won bronze in the 400-meter dash.
Ryan Rousseau heads up a group of impressive distance runners, while Trey Hensley has the potential to clear 14 feet in the pole vault. Alejandro Peredia is the top hurdler on the team.

Daniel Island Publishing

225 Seven Farms Drive
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