County has best marks come off the ground
by Emily Horos
ehoros@cherokeetribune.com
May 12, 2013 12:50 AM | 1118 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
River Ridge’s Alicia Rowan had one of the more improbable performances at the state meet, finishing third in the Class AAAA high jump — in her first year as a high jumper.
<Br>Photo special to the Tribune
River Ridge’s Alicia Rowan had one of the more improbable performances at the state meet, finishing third in the Class AAAA high jump — in her first year as a high jumper.
Photo special to the Tribune
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Creekview’s Anna Dunn found her way onto the podium for a second time at the Class AAAAA track and field state championships in Albany.

Dunn, who finished second in the pole jump Friday, placed sixth Saturday in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.06 seconds. One of her region rivals, Kell’s Kendell Williams, dominated with a meet-record time of 13.23.

In Class AAAAAA, Woodstock’s Maya Ramsey was seventh in the 100 hurdles. Her time was 14.99 seconds, a little more than a second behind North Cobb’s Shanel Burr.

The pair of hurdlers were the only Cherokee County athletes competing in Saturday’s finals.

A day earlier, River Ridge’s Alicia Rowan surged onto the scene in Class AAAA with her third-place finish in the high jump. Despite nursing an injured foot, she cleared the bar at 5 feet, 2 inches. Her personal-best is 5-4

Rowan, a senior who has only been participating in the event for a couple of months, said she has started talking to colleges about continuing her track and field career.

Though she was more than pleased with her finish at the state meet, Rowan thinks she has potential to improve. A gymnast for her entire life, Rowan said gymnastics and high jumping actually have a lot in common. She thinks that’s part of what has helped her stand out in the high jump after doing it so briefly.

“I think it gave me a really big advantage over starting so late,” Rowan said. “I’m used to having to practice and learning new things and having to get the hang of them fast. They are very similar with the technique, even though you wouldn’t expect them to be.”

Between gymnastic routines and the high jump, Rowan said she draws upon many of the same muscles groups and body movements.

River Ridge coach Barry Lakes had been after Rowan to join the track and field team for several years, but it never fit into her schedule. When this spring rolled around, Rowan found some time.

“This year, I really wanted to do it,” she said. “I wanted to give it a try, and I wound up being good.”

Rowan said her favorite part of competing in the jump is the emotional high she gets.

“After you get over the bar, you are just pumped,” she said. “You are ready to do it again. It gets me so pumped. It’s just fun. You want to do it again.”

Before competing in the state track meet, Rowan was training for another state meet — in gymnastics. Rowan, who trains with Georgia All-Star Gymnastics, is also a standout in that arena.

“I just had my gymnastics state meet, and I did really well at that,” she said, “so I’m not a bad gymnast.”
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