Dobyns-Bennett junior Jamie Almeria. Photo by Ned Jilton.
KINGSPORT — Well, that didn’t take long.
The opening event of the 35th
Times-News Relays produced a meet record.
On Thursday, at Sullivan North,
Dobyns-Bennett junior Jamie Almeria flew over the crossbar at a height of 9-6 to
set a meet record in the girls pole vault competition.
record was 9-2 set by Tennessee High’s Brittany Linkous in 2010.
Wade from University School successfully defended his Times-News boys pole vault
title with a leap of 13-0. He finished the competition tied with Unicoi’s Kyle
Green, who also cleared 13-0, but Wade won on fewer misses.
attacked the bar from her opening vault and seemed unfazed by the strong head
wind at the pit. She easily cleared 9-0 and was joined at that height by Boone’s
Abby Howe and Science Hill’s Savannah Hirst.
All three vaulters missed
their first two attempts at 9-6.
On Almeria’s third attempt, she cleared
Howe and Hirst failed to clear on their third attempts and
Almeria was the only competitor left in the competition and had the gold medal
She attempted to clear 10-0, but could not negotiate a height
12 inches over her previous best.
“There was so much adrenaline running
through me,” said Almeria. “I was really nervous. But I know I can go higher. I
just have to work harder on my technique and get that invert right."
finished second with Hirst third.
Wade and Green did not enter the
competition until the bar reached 12 feet. Wade cleared the bar on his first
attempt and Green missed.
That proved to be the difference at the end of
They both easily cleared the bar up to 13-0 but neither
could muster a vault over 13-6. The final result went back to
“Kyle and I are like brothers competing against each other,” said
Wade, a senior who will vault at Lipscomb University next yea. “We love going
against each other, but we both hate losing to the other.”
Jacob Laughlin was third at 11-6.
“I wasn’t really that confident today,”
said Wade. “I completely bailed on my second attempt at 13-6 and just couldn’t
“But it’s great to win the Times-News for a second