Belgreen's Barber, Britton excel at state meet for Lady Bulldogs
BELGREEN – Thanks to the Alabama High School Athletic Association shutting down athletic events for nearly a week, several members of the Belgreen varsity softball team had to choose between competing at the state track meet or playing in the North Region Softball Tournament.
Many chose to play softball, but Katelin Barber and Katy Britton decided to participate in the track meet Friday, which was in Gulf Shores, then drive to Huntsville to play softball Saturday.
It was a decision that paid off well for both athletes.
Barber won a pair of titles while Britton finished third in one event and 11th in another.
Barber's first title came in the 100-meters in record fashion – she broke the 14-year old Class 1A state record in the finals of the event. The old record was 12.30 seconds. Barber's time was 12.01.
"I found out about it 10 or 15 minutes after the event," Barber said. "My mom told me about it and I said 'You're lying.'"
It was an impressive performance for a runner who says she does not practice the event and only participated in four meets – two at Russellville, the county meet and the sectional meet – before winning the state title.
"I just show up at the meets," Barber said. "I have a parent the tells me a little about running, but that is about it."
Barber also claimed a title in the 200-meters.
Britton's best finish at the state meet was in the javelin throw, where she finished third. She was also 11th in the 400-meters, finishing the run less than one second from a Top-10 finish.
"I thought I did good," Britton said. "It was the farthest I have thrown the javelin since I started."
Britton, a junior, began throwing the javelin her freshman year at Belgreen.
After performing so well in Gulf Shores, the players turned their attention to softball.
They spent the night on the coast and drove up to Huntsville Saturday morning. Fortunately for them, the weather helped them reach their destination in time for the Lady Bulldogs' first game of the day.
"It was very tiring," Britton said.
After arriving in Huntsville, Britton and Barber helped the softball team fight its way through the losers' bracket. Although Belgreen fell one win short of reaching the state tournament, the Lady Bulldogs knocked off a pair of the state's top programs in Athens Bible School and Waterloo.
"We accomplished a lot," Barber said. "I don't know if we've ever gotten that far before. I know we haven't since I've been playing."