Written by SportsDayDFW.com
UIL state track and field: Blind pole vaulter draws crowds; Newman Smith senior takes 800
AUSTIN – A throng of media, UIL staff and fascinated fans flocked to the Class 3A pole vaulting competition at the UIL state track meet Friday at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
They were all there to see blind pole vaulter Charlotte Brown, a junior from Emory Rains who made her second consecutive appearance at the state meet. She received the largest ovation of the day after missing her third attempt at 11 feet, 6 inches and finishing in a tie for fourth place.
ESPN sent a slew of staff to the meet and cut away from the afternoon SportsCenter for live coverage of her vaults.
“I didn’t intend to be a role model,” Brown said, “but if I can be one and I can inspire just one kid, then every bad day jumping and bruise along the way was worth it.”
Brown was successful on vaults of 10 feet, 10-6 and 11 feet before falling short three times at 11-6. Her qualifying vault at the regional meet was 11-3.
Brown lost what little remained of her vision in the year since the 2013 state meet. Last year she used a color-coded mat next to the runway to cue her jump. Unable to see the contrast in colors anymore, Brown used a high-frequency beeper that allowed her to gauge when to vault.
“Most people would think it’s frustrating to have to change [their routine] every time, but essentially that’s what life is. Life is changing all the time. I treat it as a challenge when things change. When I lost the rest of my vision I just saw it as another opportunity to accomplish something.”
Hampton Prep girls win 2A team title
Hampton Prep, a charter school in South Dallas, won the Class 2A girls team championship with 66 points.
Freshmen Kori Levingston, Diana Granados and Daja Gordon joined junior Jaelyn Pettit on the gold medal-winning 4x400 relay to clinch the team title. Rosebud-Lott was second with 54 points.
Granados also won gold in the 400 with a time of 55.92 seconds. Gordon won gold in the 100 with a time of 11.97.
Freshman Camri Austin won silver in the 100 hurdles and ran the opening leg of Hampton Prep’s silver medal-winning 4x100 relay.
Newman Smith’s Moore pulls away in 800
Carrollton Newman Smith senior Jeffrey Moore won the 4A 800 meters with a personal-best time of 1:51.27 that beat the rest of the field by nearly 1.5 seconds. The key for Moore, who has signed with Sam Houston State, was his second lap.
“That's when everyone gets tired,” he said, “and I just push through.”
Moore just missed a second medal, finishing fourth in the 1,600. He was less than two-tenths of a second behind third-place finisher Michael Johnson of San Elizario.
More hardware for Hawn
Forney senior Kiana Hawn, a Baylor signee, added two medals to her expansive collection Friday.
Hawn successfully defended her gold medal in the 100 hurdles in an impressive 13.82 seconds. She won silver in the long jump — after taking bronze a year ago — with a season-best jump of 19 feet, 41/4 inches.
“It’s a great end to my high school career,” said Hawn, who won three medals as a junior last year.
Get out the brooms
Area athletes swept the medals in the Class 4A girls 100 hurdles as well as the 4x200 relay.
Forney’s Kiana Hawn, Arlington Seguin’s Tonea Marshall and Carrollton Creekview’s Samantha Gonzalez finished in that order in the 100 hurdles.
Lancaster, Denton Guyer and Arlington Seguin finished one-two-three in the 4x200 relay.
Red Oak Life
Carr. Newman Smith
4A 4x200: Lancaster
2A 4x400: Hampton Prep
4A 4x400: Lancaster