By Commerce Journal Staff
The Commerce Journal
Buck Wilson of Commerce won gold and silver medals this weekend at the state meet while Rains pole vaulter Charlotte Brown won over a lot of hearts.
Wilson took the Class 2A triple jump title late on Friday night after enduring a two-hour storm delay. Then the Commerce senior returned on Saturday afternoon to finish second in the 300-meter hurdles.
Brown received a standing ovation from many of the fans at Mike A. Myers Stadium after becoming the first legally blind athlete to ever compete at the University Interscholastic League State Track and Field Championships, placing eighth in the Class 3A pole vault and then received the 2013 Section 6 National High School Spirit of Sport Award during a special ceremony on the infield. Joining Brown on the infield were her family and friends from Emory.
Wilson leaped 47 feet 10 3/4 inches on his second attempt to capture the triple jump, though competing in less than ideal conditions following the storm delay.
“It’s a big relief,” he said. “I was working hard all week.”
Wilson said the conditions were tough “but I had to fight through it.”
He won by about five inches over Tatum’s Jordan Nelson, who had beaten Wilson at the region meet. The distances was only about two inches off what Wilson jumped last year when he finished second in the 3A triple jump.
Wilson dipped under 39 seconds for the first time in the 300 hurdles, clocking a time of 38.80 to finish about .4 behind winner Colton Chadbourne of Winona (38.44).
“I broke 39, I’m happy,” said Wilson.
Wilson accomplished his pre-race goal in the 300 hurdles, winning a medal.
“I just try my best and hope for the best,” he said.
Wilson is headed Southeast Missouri State University to play football and says he has no plans to continue his track and field career.
Brown, who is a sophomore, cleared the first three heights of the pole vault competition, 9-6, 10-0 and 10-6 without a miss but missed three times at 11 feet. She cleared 11-6 at the region meet in Commerce to earn her state berth.
“I had a little bit of an off day today,” Brown said. “I wasn’t sad.”
Brown noted the hundreds of state athletes who wished they could have competed at state but didn’t make it. Her first appearance at state also didn’t faze Brown, who is a veteran of junior track and field competition.
“I’m used to pressure,” she said. “All the noise and everything. I’m used to it. It was a good day.”