There will be 16 Class 5A pole vaulters at next week’s University Interscholastic League State Track and Field Championships, and three are from Cy Woods.
“It may be a while before we see that again, but then again, it may not because we have a tremendous interest level in pole vault coming out of Goodson and Spillane Middle Schools that feed into our program, and Goodson coach Scott Calhoun and Spillane coach Kevin Defreese do a great job and are a big, big part of these three vaulters qualifying for state,” Cy Woods boys track coach Mike Zachos said.
“The kids come to us with a lot of fundamentals and techniques and we just try to hone it in high school.”
Sophomore Travis Toliver has gone 15 feet, 4 inches this spring and won the Class 5A Region III title at 14-3 last week in Humble.
Senior Alyssa Gullo (region first at 12-0) is returning to state after finishing third last year, and the three-time district champ will be joined by fellow senior Monica McClellen (second in 5A-III at 11-3), who like Toliver is making a first trip to Austin.
Toliver is a year-around decathlete who vaulted for the Cy Woods 9th-grade team last year, and Zachos adds: “He could have probably reached the region finals as a freshman, but we had some other older vaulters on the varsity at the same level and we needed him in other events, and Toliver has really exploded this year.
“Our (Cy Woods) vaulting coach, Bob Chaya, also does a great job and works very closely with our boys and girls, and the kids also have private coaches, and pole vaulting is a lot like a golf swing where you can be told to do the same thing 10 different ways, so sometimes, it’s a balance of support and kind of staying out of the way, depending on the level of the vaulter.”
The Cy Springs girls 400 and 800 relays of junior Tyra Blake, sophomore Trameceia Sample and Kelsey Monroe, and freshman Samiyah Samuels finished first in 5A-III, and Samuels also qualified for state in the girls 100 meters (region second).
The Cy Springs boys have junior Isaac Samuels (5A-III discus champion) and senior Sam Williams (second 400) ready to go at state.
“Samuels was leading, and then fell behind another competitor, and came back to win it,” Cy Springs coach Michael Cahee said. “His technique is about as close to perfect as you can get, and he’s just an outstanding person from a great family.”
Langham Creek’s Skylar Ross Ransom was a 5A-III winner in the girls 100 hurdles, and also heading to state are Cy Creek senior Daina Harper (region second girls 400), sophomore Meia Gordon (second girls shot put), and the Lady Cougars 400 relay of Harper and juniors Jasmine Lewis, Mariah Mack and Ka’lee Roberson (region second); Cy Lakes sophomore Jessica Duckett (second girls 100 and 300 hurdles) and junior Ian Cazares (second boys 1,600); Cy-Fair freshman Amber Ivy (second girls 100 and 200); and Cy Falls senior Keon Roberson (second girls 800).
The University Interscholastic League State Track and Field Championships are May 10-11 (a Friday-Saturday) at the University of Texas Mike A. Myers Stadium in Austin.