Spring Valley ended the season the same way it started --- perfect.
The Vikings completed an undefeated season by capturing their second SCHSL Class AAAAA boys state track and field championship.
Vikings coach Matt Oberly, who was named the SCTCCCA Class 5A Track and Field Coach of the Year, said that winning two straight isn't an easy accomplishment.
"We were pretty good all season long at mostly everything. We returned a lot of good jumpers and a lot of sprinters. In the Upstate, we knew that Dorman had a really good team and what their strongpoints were. Wando was really good in the lower state. We didn't really match up with either of them until Dorman in the upper state meet and Wando at state."
Two relay titles
Senior Chris Doby helped the Vikings win the 4x100 meter relay (41.19) and 4x400 meter relay (3:18.45). He also finished eighth in the 400 meter hurdles.
"Winning two straight state championships is a direct result of the work that our boys team put in every day at practice," Doby said. "The members of the team were committed to achieving the goals that we set before the season. The hard work and dedication that each member of the team put in allowed us to have an undefeated season. The coaching staff believes in every member of the team and that strengthens the tradition of excellence at Spring Valley."
Doby went on to say that securing the two relays helped give the Vikings the edge they needed.
"In a sport that is mostly individual, the relay poses unique challenges and rewards. One challenge with the relay is that you have four athletes that excel in their own unique way. These four athletes must have chemistry and good communication. Coach Crumpton was able to construct an order that executed clean exchanges and great individual performances to bring home the win. The ultimate reward for a relay team is the feeling of accomplishment when you stand on the top of the podium with your three teammates."
Spring Valley was also strong in the jumps as junior Caleb Cooper and senior Jordan Chestnut placed fifth and sixth in the high jump. Chestnut was also third in the triple jump, while junior Jaylen Bostic was fourth.
Oberly feels the pieces are in place to try to go for a three-peat, but he knows it will be a challenge.
"Three in a row would be awesome, but at the 5A level it's extremely hard to do. We've got good pieces coming back. But winning back-to-back is awesome, too."