JEFFERSON – Malik Broughton may not have soared as high as he hoped, but the senior still jumped high enough Thursday to give Veterans its first ever individual state championship in any sport.
Broughton came into the meet hoping to match or surpass the 7-2 high jump mark he posted at the Class AAAA sectional. He left with a clearance of 6-8 and a Class AAAA state title.
A wet track and a cool temperature sniped away the chance of going after the 30-year-old state record of 7-3 1/2.
Broughton, and most of his competition, were bothered by the conditions early and often.
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Cross Creek’s Sean-Michael Rand scratched twice at 6-0 less than a week after he jumped 6-8 at the sectionals.
Broughton scratched twice at 6-2 before easily clearing the height. He cleared 6-4 on his first attempt but then missed twice at 6-6.
“I was a wreck,” Broughton said. “I probably looked cool over there waiting, but I was a mess.”
He and Rand both cleared 6-6 on their final attempt, making them the only two guys left in the competition for the second time in less than a week.
Rand didn’t come close to clearing 6-8, while Broughton made the height on his second try.
After clinching the championship, Broughton moved the bar to 7-0. He slipped on his first try and then hit the bar on the next two.