Saginaw Boswell’s Lakan Taylor didn’t just win the Class 4A state title in the pole vault, she set a state record by clearing a height of 13 feet, 8 inches Friday during the UIL state track meet at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
Taylor, who is headed to Alabama, broke the previous record set by Mansfield’s Shade Weygandt in 2007 by one inch and was 41/2 inches short of the national mark.
“It was awesome, I mean I was striving for that national record, but I set the state record and you can’t ask for more than that,” Taylor said.
“I made it on my third attempt so there was all of the nerves. I skimmed the bar, it was close, but it was just awesome to do that.”
Despite a two-hour delay to the start of the meet due to rain, the weather was perfect for Taylor’s vaults.
“The best thing to happen for me was the weather; it was a beautiful day, because it was supposed to pour down all day,” Taylor said.
Rain, rain go away
UIL officials recovered from a two-hour delay during morning field events and were back on schedule by mid-afternoon, only for “threatening lightning,” at 7 p.m., followed by pouring rain to delay more than half of the scheduled running events in Class 4A, 2A and 1A Division II for almost three hours.
Burleson’s Jessica Prickett knew what she had to do Friday morning in order to claim her first state title; jump out to a huge lead and hope to fend off the field down the stretch. It turned out she didn’t have to do too much to worry about.
Prickett raced out to an early lead in the 3200 en route to setting a Class 4A state meet record of 10:26.91, more than 12 seconds faster then the second place finisher.
“Right from the start I just knew I had to get out ahead and when the gun went off and after the first 300 meters I started leading, tested it and it worked,” Prickett said. “I was afraid they were going to catch me at the end because that’s what usually happens. I knew they were going to try, but they couldn’t do it.”
Birdville’s Joas Aguilar claimed the Class 4A discus state title with a throw of 179-1.
It wasn’t Aguilar’s top throw of the season, as he won the Class 4A Region I title two weeks ago in Abilene with a throw of 185 feet, 5 inches, but it was still the top throw in the state on Friday.
Aguilar, a Texas A&M football signee, placed third in the discus last season with a distance of 170-10.
Seizing the moment
Azle’s Elisha Peters qualified for the high jump with a middle of the pack height of 5-6, good enough to win the Class 4A Region I title.
Friday, she rose to the occasion and cleared 5-9 to claim the gold medal. Peters set her personal record of 5 feet, 9.69 inches back in March at at the Texas Relays.
Better and better
Western Hills long jumper Crystal Jones won the state title with a personal best leap of 19-31/2, feetbesting her previous best of 18-23/4 set just two weeks ago at the regional meet.
Taylor actually won silver at regionals, and Western Hills teammate Jaynisha Berry won gold with a distance of 19-11/2, Berry finished sixth Friday with a jump of 17-71/2.