Wolfe City distance runner Caden Thurman and Royse City pole vaulter Jacelyn Neighbors will be trying to win medals again at the University Interscholastic League State Track and Field Championships.
Thurman, who won the Class 2A 1600-meter run state title last year, will be running in that event and the 3200-meter run both on Friday at the Mike A. Myers Stadium in Austin.
Neighbors, who was third last year at state in the Class 5A pole vault, will be competing in the 6A vault on Saturday.
Thurman won the 1600 last year in the time of 4 minutes, 22.00 seconds. He qualified for the 1600 this year in 4:28.69 while winning the Region II-2A title. He's the only state qualifier under the time of 4:30. Jose Vanegas-Martinez of Goldthwaite ranks second at 4:32.37, followed by Marco Cunningham of Waco Meyers (4:33.26), Taylor Vela of Center Point (4:33.6), Grant Franks of Centerville (4:36.13), Salvatore Lione of San Antonio Stacey (4:36.59), Koy Torres of Sundown (4:42.37) and Hollis Pearcy of Hamilton (4:44.72).
Thurman also ranks first in the 3200-meter run by a big margin with his Region II-2A winning time of 9:21.71. The nearest qualifier ranks nearly 30 seconds behind with Cunningham of Waco Meyer at 9:51.13, followed by Taylor Warrick of Stockdale (9:55.10), Martinez-Vanegas of Goldthwaite (9:55.73), Lione of Stacey (10:18.10) Franks of Centerville (10:19.66), Francis Patanpatan of Hawley (10:21.56), Adrian Rosales of Booker (10:24.74) and Sawyer Hamilton of Plains (10:24.61).
Thurman finished second in the Class 2A state cross country meet in 2021 and was leading the 2022 race when he pulled up with an injury. He ranked among the top high school cross country runners in the nation this past fall.
He won the 800, 1600 and 3200 races at district and area but passed on the 800 at regional.
The 3200 race is scheduled for 9:15 a.m. on Friday, with the 1600 planned for 8:15 p.m.
Neighbors cleared 12 feet 6 inches to finish third at state last year in the 5A pole vault. She cleared 13 feet to win her event at the Region II-6A meet at Waco Midway.
Neighbors ranks third of the nine state qualifiers with her height. Jacqui Rose of Keller and Skyler Schuller of Coppell lead at 13-3, a height that Neighbors cleared at the Heath Hawk Relays in Rockwall earlier this season. She also cleared 12-10 to win at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays in Austin earlier this season.
She cleared 12-0 to place fifth in the 5A pole vault at state in 2021 as a freshman.
The 6A girls pole vault is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Saturday.
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