Highland Games honor top athletes


Staff report



Christian Carswell is named Athlete of the Games for men’s track and field Saturday at the 61st annual Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.


Skip Sickler | Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation

From left, Carissa Chambers and Grace Leis are named Athletes of the Games for women’s track and field


Skip Sickler | Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation

LINVILLE — It was “T for Texas and T for Tennessee” at the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games, when two athletes tied for Athlete of the Games in women’s track and field.

Grace Leis, 17, of Spring, Texas, and Carissa Chambers, 27, of Johnson City, Tennessee, tied for the prestigious title after dominating Saturday’s track and field events at MacRae Meadows.

Meanwhile, Christian Carswell, 22, of Morganton, was named Athlete of the Games in men’s track and field, outracing — and outjumping — his competition at the 61st annual Games.

2016 was Chambers’s first time competing at the Games, but the Johnson City optometrist had victory in sight, especially when it came to the 100 Yard Dash, her favorite event. Chambers turned in outstanding finishes in both the 100 Yard Dash and the Triple Jump.

“It was amazing and so well organized,” Chambers said of the competition. “It brought back memories from high school.”

Leis said 2016 marked her third year competing at the Games, citing the “fun atmosphere” as her reason for returning. That includes the relays — her run of choice — although she took first in both the 220 Yard Dash and the Long Jump.

Carswell, a Western Carolina University graduate, is no stranger to winning, having played a significant role in WCU’s winning sweep of the 2016 Southern Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championship. There, Carswell aced the decathlon with 6,340 points. At MacRae Meadows, he finished first in the 100 Yard Dash, 220 Yard Dash and Triple Jump, attributing his success to the guidance of his mentor, WCU assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Matt Harlfinger.

Track and Field results

100 Yard Dash – Men

1. Christian Carswell (Morganton, N.C.) – 00:11.00

2. C.J. Wells (Unicoi, Tenn.) – 00:11.10

3. Samuel Craig (Granite Falls, N.C.) – 00:11.25

220 Yard Dash – Men

1. Christian Carswell (Morganton, N.C.) – 00:26.00

2. Kevin Pack (Dobson, N.C.) – 00:28.09

3. David Melville (Summerfield, N.C.) – 00:35.81

440 Yard Dash – Men

1. Doug Smith (Birmingham, Ala.) – 1:02.30

2. Aaron Hale (Raleigh, N.C.) – 1:06.38

3. Nate Smith (Banner Elk, N.C.) – 1:10.43

880 Yard Dash – Men

1. Doug Smith (Birmingham, Ala.) – 2:14

2. Kevin Pack (Dobson, N.C.) – 2:20

3. Aaron Hale (Raleigh, N.C.) – 2:39

1 Mile Run – Men

1. Doug Smith (Birmingham, Ala.) – 4:52

2. Kevin Pack (Dobson, N.C.) – 5:09

3. Aaron Hale (Raleigh, N.C.) – 5:16

2 Mile Run – Men

1. David Melville (Summerfield, N.C.) – 10:26.80

2. Doug Smith (Birmingham, Ala.) – 11:21:00

3. Aaron Hale (Raleigh, N.C.) – 11:33.28

Triple Jump – Men

1. Christian Carswell (Morganton, N.C.) – 40’ 4”

2. C.J. Wells (Unicoi, Tenn.) – 36’ 5”

3. Samuel Craig (Granite Falls, N.C.) – 31’ 11”

Long Jump – Men

1. Christian Carswell (Morganton, N.C.) – 19’ 5”

2. C.J. Wells (Unicoi, Tenn.) – 17’ 7”

3. Samuel Craig (Granite Falls, N.C.) – 15’ 4”

High Jump – Men

1. Christian Carswell (Morganton, N.C.) – 6’ 2”

2. C.J. Wells (Unicoi, Tenn.) – 5’ 0”

3. Samuel Craig (Granite Falls, N.C.) – 4’ 6”

100 Yard Dash – Women

1. Carissa Chambers (Johnson City, Tenn.) – 00:12.81

2. Grace Leis (Spring, Texas) – 00:13.25

3. Caitlin Mason (Iron Station, N.C.) – 00:13.56

220 Yard Dash – Women

1. Grace Leis (Spring, Texas) – 00:32.50

2. Loren Smith (Brevard, N.C.) – 00:35.20

3. Caitlin Mason (Iron Station, N.C.) – 00:35.50

440 Yard Dash – Women

1. Mary Smith (Banner Elk, N.C.) – 1:19.13

2. Caitlin Mason (Iron Station, N.C.) – 1:22.87

3. Loren Smith (Brevard, N.C.) – 1:22.91

880 Yard Dash – Women

1. Mary Smith (Banner Elk, N.C.) – 3:13

2. Carissa Chambers (Johnson City ,Tenn.) – 3:20

3. Caitlin Mason (Iron Station, N.C.) – 4:08

1 Mile Run – Women

1. Mary Smith (Banner Elk, N.C.) – 6:31

2. Carissa Chambers (Johnson City, Tenn.) – 7:34

3. Jenna Burgers (Mebane, N.C.) – 8:41

Triple Jump – Women

1. Carissa Chambers (Johnson City, Tenn.) – 26’ 8”

2. Grace Leis (Spring, Texas) – 25’ 6½”

3. Karson Woodie (Lenoir, N.C.) – 15’ 1½”

Long Jump – Women

1. Grace Leis (Spring, Texas) – 12’ 2”

2. Carissa Chambers (Johnson City, Tenn.) – 11’ ½”

3. Lauren Patterson (Seymour, Tenn.) – 8’ 11”

High Jump – Women

1. Lauren Patterson (Sevierville, Tenn.) – 4’ 6”

2. Gracie Leis (Spring, Texas) – 3’ 6”

3. Karson Woodie (Lenoir, N.C.) – 3’ 0”

Christian Carswell is named Athlete of the Games for men’s track and field Saturday at the 61st annual Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.
http://jeffersonpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_071016_GFM_GMHG_Track_Carswell_SS.jpgChristian Carswell is named Athlete of the Games for men’s track and field Saturday at the 61st annual Grandfather Mountain Highland Games. Skip Sickler | Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation

From left, Carissa Chambers and Grace Leis are named Athletes of the Games for women’s track and field
http://jeffersonpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/web1_071016_GFM_GMHG_Track_Leis_Chambers_SS.jpgFrom left, Carissa Chambers and Grace Leis are named Athletes of the Games for women’s track and field Skip Sickler | Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation

Staff report

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