Thompson High track and field teams chase success at state meet


Earlier this week, Chris Schmidt shared the ultimate goal for his Thompson High track and field teams as they prepared for the Class 7A State Championships.

“I’d love to bring home one of those maps – I don’t care if it’s blue, red, purple or what,” Schmidt said. “That’s the ultimate dream, the ultimate goal as a team, all coaches have that.”

The truth is, though, neither Thompson track team needs a championship trophy – which includes the outline of the map of Alabama – to put a stamp on a successful season. In a bunch of important ways, the Warriors arrived on the state track and field scene before they arrived at Gulf Shores High for the three-day state championships.

“I’m proud of what we accomplished so far,” Schmidt said. “I like to believe, we’re in the conversation now. (Head coach Devon Hind of perennial power Hoover High) actually said that to me this weekend and that means so much to me. I said I just want to be part of it, he said, ‘You guys are in this conversation.’ That meant a lot. We’ve made it to the big show now. We are a top five program. That’s huge. Kids don’t understand that, but coaches and adults realize that.”

School records have fallen each time the Warriors competed this season. In last week’s Class 7A Section 3 championships, the Warriors broke eight school records and set 54 personal records. By the end of the two-day meet, the Warriors were section runner ups for the first time in both boys and girls competition and had qualified 31 athletes for the state championships. It took a big bus to transport the athletes to Gulf Shores.

“We have kids in all but maybe three or four events,” Schmidt said. “I was like, ‘Man, we’ve got a lot of people going.’ That’s great things right there.”

Five Thompson athletes – McKenzie Hogue, Zakiria Holifield, Alandria McCurdy, Van Smitherman and Samuel Holmes – qualified for four events. Schmidt said several others will compete in three events. But, his excitement over what could happen this weekend, centers around more than simply depth.

“I feel that we have an opportunity to have a lot of our kids score at state (top eight) and, of course, a pretty good amount of all-state (top three) athletes too,” Schmidt said.

That type of representation would make up a good recipe for a fun weekend.

“This could be huge for our program and a start of more to come,” Schmidt said. “We’re real excited with the direction our program is going and how quickly we’ve gotten there. Good things are happening here at Thompson. Hopefully, we can seal the deal and have a great performance this weekend.”

GIRLS

THURSDAY

100 meters*

Prelims

Zakiria Holifield

Niya Oden

Alandria McCurdy

1,600 meters

McKenzie Hogue

4 x 100

Thompson

Discus

Olivia Coleman

Ebony Butler

Triple jump

Niya Oden

Alayah King

Tyara Irvin

FRIDAY

100 meter hurdles*

Prelims

Madison Wright

200 meters*

Prelims

Zakiria Holifield

Alandria McCurdy

Alayah King

3,200 meters

McKenzie Hogue

Long jump

Niya Oden

High jump

London Wooley

Julianne Knight

Javelin

Zoria Miller

Pole vault

Elizabeth Sutton

SATURDAY

800 meters

McKenzie Hogue

300 meter hurdles

Madison Wright

4 x 400 Relay

Thompson

Shot put

Zoria Miller

Ebony Butler

Boys

THURSDAY

1,600 meters

Jace Jones

Brandon DeMarcus Lee

4 x 100 Relay*

Prelims

Thompson

Shot put

Steve Villegas

Viktor Turek

Pole vault

Blake Ellis

Dominique Hall

FRIDAY

110 meters*

Prelims

Cameron Childs

Timothy Osborne

200 meters*

Prelims

Samuel Holmes

Van Smitherman

400 meters

Van Smitherman

Samuel Holmes

4 X 800 Relay

Thompson

Discus

Viktor Turek

Triple jump

Phillip Lewis

Julian Woods

High jump

Phillip Lewis

Jared Hurst

SATURDAY

300 meter hurdles

Timothy Osborne

800 meters

Thomas Cousins

Jace Jones

4 x 400 Relay

Thompson

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