Brentwood’s Lazas fights off injuries, wins decathlon

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:00am
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Kevin Lazas of Brentwood High School took home the school's first ever state decathalon trophy. Mike Strasinger for The City Paper

MURFREESBORO — Old Hercules himself might have been proud of this one.

In one of the more Herculean efforts of the track season, Brentwood High junior Kevin Lazas overcame injuries to both feet and scrambled to victory in the Class AAA decathlon Monday at the BlueCross Spring Fling.

Lazas scored 6,649 points on the MTSU track, far less than his personal best and a 7,404 total he was shooting for – but enough to finish well ahead of runnerup Quartez Clark of Cordova (6,349) and third-place Bo Gilroy of Ravenwood (6,350).

“I got a slight tear in my right heel during Monday’s first five events, and during the long jump (Tuesday), I got a stone bruise on my other heel,’’ said Lazus who finished second in last year’s decathlon. He became the first male decathlon winner in Brentwood school history.

Cassie Gulluckson and Lauren Stewart were multiple winners for BHS in the pentathlon.

“It (the injuries) really hurt me, especially in events like the pole vault where you really have to use your lower feet to push off,’’ said the lithe 6-0, 162-pound standout. “I had a 14-0 vault, but I was pushing for a 15-6, which I felt I could do.

“The doctor came in Monday night, treated it and said I could run on it. There wasn’t any way I wasn’t going to compete the final day.’’

“In the long jump, I got over 23 feet, but I scratched by about half an inch and I finished with about a 20-9,’’ said Lazas, who skipped his final two attempts in the triple jump to save himself for the final event, the 1,500.

With more than a 200-point lead, he struggled to a fourth place finish in the race but it was far more than enough to capture the title.

“It’s what I called competition of nutrition,’’ said Coach Ronnie Siegenthaler. “Every competitor is going to get nicked up a little with minor injuries over the two days in a decathlon event.

“But what happened to Kevin with the stone bruises and how he fought through it is nothing short of remarkable. It’s one of the great efforts that I’ve seen in Brentwood athletics,’’ Siegenthaler said.

As he ends his junior year, Lazas was asked which colleges he was interested in. “At this point, my top two choices are Florida and Texas,’’ he said. “I have trained with Ben Davies (former BA star at Florida), and Texas has a great program, too.’’

His win gives BHS 10 points an early lead in the track finals that are scheduled for Friday at MTSU. Lazas will compete in the pole vault, long jump and high jump.

Assuming he hasn’t lost his Herculean status.

Page star Gilbert wins A/AA: Page High senior Les Gilbert won the Class A/AA decathlon, finishing with a 6,053 total, far ahead of runner-up Cameron Miller of Unicoi County (5,438).

Gilbert, who finished sixth as a sophomore and runner-up last year, captured the gold this time, joining Brent Thompson in 2006 as the only other Page athlete to win the decathlon. Gilbert was especially strong in the pole vault where he won that event easily with a 12-11¾ leap.

MUS sweeps DII: Barret Folk led a three-man sweep for Memphis University School by winning the DII decathlon with a 5,950 total. Bryan Oslin and Brad Bars, both of MBA, were the highest Nashville finishers at 7-8. Brentwood Academy junior Matt DePere placed ninth.

Check out all our Spring Fling stories here, or click these links.

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Brentwood’s Lazas fights off injuries, wins decathlon

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