Franklin County High School freshman Ja’Mela Ray became the first Seahawk ever to medal in state track and field last weekend, as she placed eighth in the shotput at the meet Friday at the University of North Florida.
Ray set a personal record at state of 10.54 meters, the equivalent, of 34 feet 7 inches, which got her into the medaling position.
“Many of the medal winners ahead of her are seniors and will not be returning,” said coach John Cooper. “The next two years for her should see a clearer path to the top three, if she works on her craft year round.”
The state championship format for high jump starts at the lower seeds’ best heights.
“It throws many off,” said Cooper.
Junior Tiauana Benjamin ended up scratching on all of her jumps.
“She is used to working her way up, instead of starting out at a huge height,” said Cooper.