Williamson County sweeps Class AAA decathlon
By Austin Stanley, For the Williamson Herald
Williamson County continues to be a staple in the BlueCross Spring Fling decathlon as Centennial senior Chaz Hawkins became the 2013 Class AAA state champion May 21.
Hawkins was joined on the podium by Ravenwood senior Zach Gilroy, who ﬁnished second, and Independence senior Austin Billings who came in third to complete the sweep.
“I’m really happy with it,” Hawkins said. “My performance could have been better. The second day I kind of stumbled a little bit in the hurdles and long jump. Other than that, I’m really, really happy.”
All 10 events were led by the Williamson County trio. Gilroy was the top performer in the pole vault and discus throw. Billings placed ﬁrst in the 110-meter hurdles and shot put. Hawkins won the 100 meters, triple jump, 400 meter, long jump and 1500 meter outright. He tied with ﬁve others for the best high jump.
“I got major PR’s (Personal Record) in the high jump, for example, I wasn’t expecting to go 6-foot today. Especially because I’ve been at 5-foot-6 all year,” Hawkins said. “So, I was really happy to get up that extra half foot to put it on my back a little. This 1500m, it was just all heart. Really put my soul into it and left as much on the track as I could.”
Billings’ last three events came with major adversity. During warm-ups for the long jump, Billings slipped on the board - hyper-extending his left knee. After being checked by trainers and having the knee wrapped, he continued.
More adversity set in after the long jump, but this time for all the competitors. A nearly three-hour weather delay due to rain and lightning suspended competition. All persons were required to leave the stadium. Billings wasn’t sure how the long break would affect his hyper-extended knee.
“Originally I thought it was going to hurt me,” Billings said. “I thought the pain would set in, I would lose my adrenaline and I wouldn’t be able to carry over. But it turned out to be a godsend. It allowed me to rest on it, get some more movement back into it. In the high jump I matched my PR. So, it helped in the end.”
Sweeping the podium means a lot to this trio of athletes when it comes to county pride and a long friendly rivalry.
“I’ve been training, running against these guys for basically my whole track career,” Hawkins said. “I’ve been training against these guys even though we are all on opposite clubs.”
“It feels good to know that (Williamson County) is that strong in the deck and can stay that strong and will always be that strong and always has been. I’m glad to ﬁnally put it up for my (Williamson County) boys,” Hawkins said.
“It’s a great representation for our county,” Billings said. “I feel like we’ve been here for a long time. It means a lot, and I’m sure our county is pretty happy with us as well.”
Posted on: 5/22/2013