“We both held our breath as we waited to see what would happen,” Woodland coach Adriane Steele said.
A third straight miss and Stocks becomes the 5-AAAAA state champion in the boys’ high jump.
“There was pressure on both kids, but Qua did exactly what he told me he would do,” Steele said. “And that was win it [the state championship] this year.”
The celebration began when the two watched the bar fall harmlessly to the ground during the first three days of track and field competition at the GHSA’s boys’ state meet held in Albany.
“It is truly amazing what Qua accomplished,” said Steele of the junior who returned home as Bartow County’s only male track and field state champion this year.
Stocks carries on a Woodland tradition that began in 2007 when Phillip Adams won state in the triple jump and continued with the Lady Wildcats’ Diana Wimpy winning the state championship in the discus throw in 2010.
“Qua is just a junior, so there is a great chance that he can repeat as state champion, something that has never done by anyone at Woodland,” Steele said. “He’s the type of athlete who can do it. At Woodland, we are not just satisfied with going to the show. Our goal is for our athletes to be on the podium. Hopefully, that will happen at the girls’ state meet next weekend.”
Stocks became a state champion on a Thursday afternoon when the skies were clear and temperatures remained in the mid-70s. The final two days were run in the cold and rain.
“It started raining right when we arrived at 11:30 a.m. Friday and continued through Saturday without any letup,” Steele said. “It was a light drizzle, but it caused much havoc during track events. There were a lot of false starts and dropped batons. We had a miscue on a relay event that cost us dearly.”
Other Wildcats competing at the boys’ state meet were C.J. Woods, DaMek Lewis, Jamai Smith, Quadre Allen, Johnathan Jackson and Devon Mitchell.
The Colonels’ Keylon Woodard was an eighth-place finisher in the triple jump with a leap of 43 feet, 9 1/4 inches in Class AAAA competition in Jefferson.
The top finisher for Cartersville for the state meet held in Jefferson was Tommy Morrison, who came in fifth with a time of 2:00.69 in the Class AAA 800-meter run. Adairsville’s lone representative at Jefferson was Jordan Character in the 110-meter hurdles.