Clark spins a hit; Brooks stumbles

After leading most of the way, sophomore suffers heartbreaking end
BY BILL MARTIN Reporter Sports Editor

LeRaven Clark turned in a career best throw to gain a bronze medal at the state track meet. Reporter/Ken Esten Cooke LeRaven Clark turned in a career best throw to gain a bronze medal at the state track meet. Reporter/Ken Esten Cooke AUSTIN—LeRaven Clark and Daniel Brooks had different reasons for going to the state track meet.

Now, they have different reasons for going back.

Clark earned a third place bronze medal in the discus at Mike Meyers Stadium Saturday on the University of Texas campus, while Brooks had a medal whisked away from his grasp in the 110-meter hurdles.

Brooks suffered a heartbreaking defeat, stumbling at the finish line after leading most of the race.

Running in lane six, the sophomore got off to a blazing start and led over the first six hurdles to put himself in position for a medal.

But after he cleared the final hurdle, his balance shifted forward and he fell face first onto the track and skidded across the finish line in sixth place with a time of 15.14.

“Daniel had a very good race,” said Rockdale track coach Brett Hasselbach. “It is unfortunate he was not able to keep his balance at the end. He still finished sixth in the state and had a great year. I think this experience will help drive him in the years to come.”

In second place behind winner Quinten Smith of Dallas Madison (right), Rockdale’s Daniel Brooks stumbles at the finish line to finish sixth at the state track meet. Reporter/Ken Esten Cooke In second place behind winner Quinten Smith of Dallas Madison (right), Rockdale’s Daniel Brooks stumbles at the finish line to finish sixth at the state track meet. Reporter/Ken Esten Cooke Marquise Smith of Dallas Madison edged out defending state champion Phillip Jones of West Orange-Stark 14.59 to 14.61.

Brooks had come in with the second-best qualifying time of 14.41 to Jones’ 14.30.

His teammate and cousin Clark didn’t waste any time in putting down his footprint on an overcast Saturday morning, hurling the discus 164-03—a measurement that stood up the entire competition for third place.

The marking was a careerbest for the 6-foot-6, 247-pound junior.

Every one of LeRaven Clark’s throws in the discus Saturday were over the 150-foot mark. Reporter/Bill Martin Every one of LeRaven Clark’s throws in the discus Saturday were over the 150-foot mark. Reporter/Bill Martin He was hardly satisfied.

“I wanted to get some more height on my throws,” he said. “I want to go out tomorrow and start practicing for next year. It was a great experience just being here, but getting third is not really why you come here.”

Clark also had efforts of 154-5, 155-1, 156-4 and 155-11.

“It was great to see LeRaven start out quick,” Hasselbach said. “Almost all of his throws were over 150. He had not thrown that far until after district. To finish with his personal best, it just shows you how hard of a worker he is.”

Clark was bested by someone he knows quite well, Navasota’s Rodney Brown, who as expected, grabbed gold in the discus after placing sixth at last year’s meet.

Clark and Brown have butted heads all season long, with Brown taking the district and regional crowns just ahead of the upstart Clark.

Brown—who has a career-best of 198-7—trimmed Yoakum’s William Markert by one inch, 174-08 to 174-07. Markert was also third in the shot put.

Brown’s hope to double-up in gold were dashed as he finished a disappointing eighth in the shot put.

We st Ora nge - St a rk ea si ly defended its Class 3A team championship with 66 points.

Taylor (re: Mark Jackson) was second with 29 points after its star senior captured the triple jump and long jump and was second in the high jump.

Jackson is the top triple jumper in the nation and will attend Texas in the fall.

THE BROOKS GO TO AUSTIN


1982—Dennis Brooks, 2nd in 110-
meter hurdles
1984—Tony Brooks, 1st in 300-
meter hurdles
1985—Tony Brooks, 1st in 110-
meter hurdles and 300-
meter hurdles
1986—Donny Brooks, 3rd in 110-
meter hurdles
1987—Donny Brooks, 1st in 110-
meter hurdles
1988—Donny Brooks, 1st in 110-

meter hurdles
2008—Krysten Brooks, 5th in 100-
meter hurdles
2009—Krysten Brooks, 7th in 100-
meter hurdles
2010—Daniel Brooks, 6th in 110-
meter hurdles
*Note: Terry Brooks just missed
out on going to state in 1983 by
finishing third in the 110-meter
hurdles at regionals by one-one
hundreth of a second.

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