, Port Arthur, Texas


April 9, 2013

Peeples battles rough conditions, as well as 21-5A

PORT ARTHUR —  Jammil Peeples had a cousin on his mom’s side named Jamaal Charles. An eight-year-old in the Port Arthur Track Club, Jammil looked up to Jamaal.

  “I looked up to Jamaal all the time,” Peeples recalled. “I wanted to be just like him.”

  The 18-year-old Memorial senior remembered those days when he admired Jamaal’s excellence in his “other’’ sport.

  “Track and field was what I lived for,” said the Titans trackster bound for Arkansas State University.

  Peeples battled the brutal coastal wind about as well as anyone Tuesday during the blustery opening day of the District 21-5A track and field championships at the PAISD auxiliary field.

  Jammil delivered the fastest qualifying time in the 300-meter hurdles and the only sub-40-second clocking in the event despite running on the outside from lane seven. He produced second-place finishes with a tailwind in the long and triple jump and the second-fastest qualifying time in the 110-meter hurdles.

  Nobody from the Golden Triangle participated as much or seemed more exhausted by Tuesday night at 8 p.m.

  “It was a tough day,” the 6-foot-4 Peeples reflected after his final event. “No relax time. It was tough but I think I did good in the long jump and the triple jump. I was real pleased with the long jump (22-8.25) but I need more work in the triple jump.”

  Peeples has worked with coach Verril Young at extending his landing in his long jump technique. That’s the biggest Jammil has experienced toward the end of his high school career.

  The chill in the late afternoon was most unwelcome for jumpers. Memorial girls jumper Ry’Yon Bruton injured a hamstring muscle in the long jump battling the cool breeze.

  “I checked the weather,” Peeples said. “It was supposed to be warmer.”

  The outside lane in the 300-meter hurdles might have bothered a less-seasoned athlete but Jammil rolled with it. After all, he has planned to run the 400-meter hurdles in college.

  “I wasn’t tripping about it,” he said. “It was OK. Lanes are lanes. You just got to run.”

  The weather conditions may alter plenty of schedules in the next few days for area tracksters. District 20-4A officials announced Tuesday afternoon that they intended to move up today’s running finals schedule from 5 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The 21-5A meet is scheduled to resume in the PAISD auxiliary field Thursday at 6 p.m.

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From the Fieldhouse blog