Michael Brown Defends State Title in 800 Meters

Jun 2nd, 2014

(Charleston)-For about 795 meters, Carmi-White County's Michael Brown was in second place.

But as he approached the finish line at the Class 1A state track and field meet in Charleston Saturday, the Carmi teen wasn't about to be denied his place in history.

Brown blew by Cumberland's Tye Sutherland just before the finish line to win his second straight IHSA 800-meter championship.  He's just the second Carmi track athlete to win two individual state titles and just the third Carmi athlete in any sport to accomplish that feat.

He also posted the best time of his career: 1 minute, 54.33 seconds.

Brown told a group of reporters after the race that his strategy was to stay behind Sutherland and pass him in the closing meters, and the plan worked to perfection.

It was a fitting end to a brilliant high school career for Brown.  In addition to his back-to-back 800-meter titles, Brown also placed in the top 10 in both the 800 and 1,600 as a sophomore, and placed in the top 25 at the state cross country meet during his junior and senior seasons. 

His six career medals from state competition is second only to 1993 graduate Jason Zieren's eight.  Zieren won back-to-back titles in the 3,200-meters in '92 and '93.

Brown will continue his running career next year on the very same track, as he has signed to run for Eastern Illinois University, which was the site of Saturday's IHSA state meet.

Full results from the meet can be found on ihsa.org.

Photo: Brian Turner of The Wayne County Press