COLUMBUS — Butler junior long jumper overcame a tough start on Saturday to place seventh overall at the Ohio High School Athletic Association State Track and Field Meet on Saturday.
Sharp fouled on two of his first three jumps but his middle one, 22 feet, 8.25 inches was just enough to claim the final spot in the finals competition. That jump also broke the Butler school record set by Sharp earlier this spring.
That record didn’t stand for long, however.
Sharp became the first Butler long jumper to break the 23 foot barrier on his first jump in finals with a leap of 23-00.75. That leap was good enough for seventh overall.
Sharp wasn’t sure if he had made finals.
“I wasn’t sure if I made finals, but then I came back and got 23 feet,” said Sharp. “I saved my best for last. I want to thank God for giving me the opportunity to be here and all my family, friends, and coaches who have supported me all season.”
“His run-throughs weren’t good, and then to have two fouls and then get the 22-8 was a huge PR (personal record) to get him to finals,” said jumps coach Kylie Kopp-Simon. “His first jump he fouled by about two inches and it was the best jump I’ve ever seen him have, probably 23-10. He has so much potential.”
Kopp-Simon is in her first season with the Aviators but immediately made a change that has helped Sharp excel.
“The first thing I did was get him to switch the foot he jumps off of – he’s so powerful coming off the right foot,” she said. “He has so much speed, so much potential I think he will be amazing next year.”
“The kid is a fantastic athlete, he works very, very hard, and to coach him is an honor,” said Butler head coach Butch Davis. “As hard as he works I think he’s back here again next year.
Reach Darrell Wacker at 937-684-8983 or on Twitter @VandaliaDrummer.