Coahulla Creek High School Colts

May 9, 2014

Creek’s Champ

Foxx wins school’s first state title

Before there were any attempts in the high jump finals Thursday at the Class 3A boys track and field state high school meet at Jefferson High School’s Memorial Stadium, there was some trash talking.

Coahulla Creek assistant coach Eric Bishop said one of the competitors approached top-seeded Josh Foxx, a Coahulla Creek junior, and told Foxx he was about to run into a wolf.

Wolves aren’t very sly.

Using his brains, his leaping skills and his position as the last competitor on the heat sheet, Foxx was the only jumper to clear 6 feet, 6 inches on his first attempt, winning Coahulla Creek its first Georgia High School Association athletics state title of any sort since the school opened in 2011.

“It is awesome knowing that I will go down as the first state champion ever at the school,” Foxx said in a phone interview with The Daily Citizen. “Of course, now I can set my sights on another title. Next time, it isn’t going to be as close.”

The state title showed how much Foxx has improved since 2013, when he finished eighth overall with a jump of 5-10 at state. Earlier this year at the Ronnie McClurg Rotary Invitational at Dalton High School, Foxx cleared his personal best of 6-8 — but that extra height wasn’t needed Thursday.

All six GHSA classifications’ state meets are being held in Jefferson, with competition continuing today and finishing Saturday.

In Thursday’s other events involving local schools, Dalton’s Nate Mays was the only area athlete besides Foxx to earn points for his team (the top eight finishers score), picking up a pair of points for the Catamounts with his seventh-place finish in the Class 4A shot put.

Mays’ distance of 50 feet, 9 inches bested his 44-2 at the Region 7-4A meet and his 47-6 1/4 at the Class 4A “A” sectional meet.

In the same event, teammate Hayden Gross had a distance of 48-7 1/4 and was 10th among the 16 competitors who reached state from sectionals.

The 4A shot put title was won by Cedartown’s Nick Chubb, a standout running back and University of Georgia football signee who went 55-0 on his final attempt to best Alexander’s Colin Giesey by an inch.

In the Class 3A 1,600-meter run, Coahulla Creek’s Timmy Hooper was 14th with a time of 4 minutes, 50.58 seconds. Austin Sprague of Atlanta’s St. Pius X won in 4:18.24.

The only event remaining in Jefferson with a local competitor involves Coahulla Creek’s Sadoth Fraire, who will run in the Class 3A 3,200 meters tonight.

For Foxx, being first at the Region 5-3A meet and the Class 3A “A” sectional — he cleared 6-6 in both of those victories — helped him be last to jump at state, an advantage the No. 1 seed relished going into the meet.

With others facing the pressure of going before Foxx, he cleared all of his heights from 6-0 to 6-6 on his first attempt. Competitors get three attempts to clear a height, and three other jumpers — Franklin County’s Deonte Smith and the Cedar Grove duo of Chance Baines and Karlis Roberts — all eventually cleared 6-6.

However, they had misses on earlier attempts. In order to overtake Foxx, one of them would have needed to clear 6-8. When those three all missed their three attempts at 6-8, Foxx was the winner.

He took his three attempts at 6-8 as well, but even before he took his third attempt, he knew the title was his. Based on misses, Baines finished second, followed by Smith and Roberts.

“It was a good job, and you basically are proving that he can jump well, but he out-thought them and that is even better,” Bishop said. “It was a culmination of preparation and consistency, and consistency pays off.”

Foxx said the trash talking provided a little lift when it was time to jump — and perhaps some anxiousness.

“It helped tremendously, and at the same time, it made me nervous,” Foxx said. “But it also gave me motivation as well.

“I was pretty level throughout the competition,” he said. “There is always the possibility that someone could clear 6-8, but I had a feeling they weren’t going to make it — and if they did, then I was going to push and make it even if they did.”

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