By Charlotte Underwood
FRANKLIN, TN (WLAF) – A total of nine student-athletes from Jacksboro and La Follette Middle Schools competed in the Tennessee Middle School Track & Field State Championships at Franklin over the weekend.
Three Jacksboro Middle School track and field athletes placed at Saturday’s state competition.
Eighth graders Jackson Wade placed 2nd in the High Jump, and twins Leighton Ivey finished 2nd in Discus and Luke Ivey came in 3rd in Discus. According to Jacksboro Middle School Track and Field Coach Melinda Riggs, all three are first-year track athletes.
These Eagles and Owls competed at Howard Gamble Field against the best in the state for the top 16 athletes in each division. According to Coach Riggs, it was “miserable hot all day, but the kids did great despite the heat.”
“I told the kids that it was an honor to be at state and to do their best and they did very well. I’m so proud of these athletes, those that placed and those that didn’t. These kids all worked so hard to make it to state.” Riggs said.
Also competing at state were JMS eighth grader Mac Crumley, seventh grader Sam Sexton and sixth grader Kylie Sneed from Jacksboro. “Everyone worked so hard; it’s a great group of kids to coach,” Riggs said.
La Follette Middle School also had three student athletes participate at state including eighth graders Kaitlyn Sweat – Discus / Shot put and Lily Kingsly – Discus along with Jake Hatmaker – High Jump. Hatmaker’s a seventh grader. LaFollette Middle School Coach John Ryan said for the kids to “get a chance to compete against the best in the state and represent La Follette at the state meet is really special.”
“I’m so proud of our student athletes and how much they accomplished this year. Kaitlyn, Lily and Jake all lead by example and work hard to be at their best every time they compete,” Coach Ryan said. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 05/24/2022-6AM-PHOTOS COURTESY OF BINNIE HATMAKER)