The phrase “executed perfectly” was the description used to explain the Langley Saxons’ recent convincing victory in the girls 4×800 relay during the Virginia High School League’s Class 6 indoor track and field championship.
Langley’s winning time was a team best of 9:17.85, compared to the foursome’s first-place mark of 9:31.42 at the Liberty District championships a few days earlier. The Saxons won the state race by more than two seconds over second place and defending champion West Springfield.
For Langley, junior Elena Pesavento ran the first leg, freshman Lila Pesavento the second, freshman Corinne Jaggard the third and junior Lila Waters the anchor position.
Langley distance coach Scott Thomas said the race strategy was to have Elena Pesavento be near the lead at the end of her leg, have Lila Pesavento take the lead by the conclusion of her run, then Jaggard would extend that lead, with Waters pulling away to the finish.
“The strategy was executed perfectly,” Thomas said. “There was a little concern on the last lap because Lila [Waters] had to pass some runners she was lapping.”
Thomas said the relay’s strategy was put in place in December.
“These four have been willing to put in the hard work by exerting themselves in practice and they have such a competitive fiercely spirit in races,” Thomas said.
The Langley relay participated in just two meets during the indoor season, at district and states, skipping the region meet. The foursome’s state-winning time of 9:17.85 was the ninth fastest in the country this winter by a girls 4×800 high-school relay.
The team was planning to run in a national high-school meet in recent days in New York City.
In individual races at the state meet, Waters placed seventh in the 1,600 and 14th in the 1,000. Jaggard was seventh in the 500, with Langley’s Hala Gilbert ninth in the pole vault.