Primeaux leads Rebels into Class B state meet
By Chris Quebedeaux
CROWLEY – Competing at the state’s highest level is something that has become a common occurrence for Midland’s Michael Primeaux.
The standout distance runner made a huge splash onto the track and field scene last year as an eighth-grader by qualifying for the state track and field championships in the 3200-meter run where he placed fourth in Class B.
This year, Primeaux is back, headlining a group of seven Midland athletes who will participate in the state meet Thursday at LSU’s Bernie Moore Stadium.
Primeaux, who won the Class B state championship in cross country in the fall, will compete in both the 1600- and the 3200- meter runs.
“I don’t know what we’re up against in the mile from the teams up north, but I think Michael is stronger in the two-mile,” said Midland coach Todd Briley. “He kind of lacks in speed, but he can set that pace for longer distances. That’s why he’s so good in cross country.”
Primeaux enters Thursday’s meet with the third best time out of the three regional meets in both events. His time of 4:53.20 just four seconds shy of Choudrant’s Tyler Sadler and three seconds behind Converse’s Robert Carrier.
In the two-mile, Sadler also has the best time (10:30.80); ESA’s Greg Gannaway is second with a 10:38.60 and Primeaux follows at 10:40.40.
“In the two-mile, that boy from ESA beat him last week so he’s going to have to go out hard and really run a good race,” said Briley. “He’s run a 10:39 and we’ve talked about it - he’s going to have to go quite a bit lower than that to have a chance to win state.”
Primeaux has been hampered by a hamstring injury that occurred during the second meet of the season, but he has since made strides and has bettered his time from last year’s state meet in the two-mile by nearly 15 seconds.
“Michael has been pretty steady,” said Briley. “After his injury, we didn’t really get to do all the workouts I was hoping to do to get him ready for this year. But he’s just naturally gifted so sometimes you don’t want to do too much with him because you’re afraid to mess him up more than help him.”
Primeaux will be joined by teammates Luke Smith, Miles Sonnier, Andrew Hains, Michael Vincent, Colby Gantt and Carissa Richard competing for state honors Thursday.
In the field events, Smith enters with the best mark in the discus (122-09) while Sonnier is third at 111-1 3/4.
Sonnier will also compete on the track, joining Hains, Vincent and Gantt on the 4x400-meter relay team that placed second in the regional meet last week with a time of 3:42.90. The top time (3:42.40) heading into that event is held by Lacassine.
Richard is Midland’s lone participant on the girls’ side. She earned her spot by placing second in the 200-meter dash (28.81) and third in the long jump (15-5).
Kilbourne’s Tameka Howard enters the meet with the top mark in the long jump (16-11 1/4) while Bethany’s Marian Georgetown has the top time in the 200 (25.80).
Crowley’s Jacob Meyer will also be participating in the meet. The ESA standout qualified in the javelin with a third place throw of 144-7 last week at regionals.