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Rogers earns 8th at state

Rain could not put a damper on Laura Rogers’ state competition debut.
The Unicoi County High School junior earned all-state honors and finished eighth in the TSSAA Spring Fling Class A/AA pole vault on Thursday, May 21, at Middle Tennessee State University.
“The Spring Fling was a great experience,” Rogers said. “The cold, rainy weather was unexpected, but it was still a good day.”
Rogers vaulted at 6-06, keeping pace with fellow Region 1-A/AA foe Alex Crutcher (Greeneville). Hana Lee Auchterlonie, of West Greene, also hit the seven-foot marker in the event. Fred J. Page’s Mary Leichner won the competition hitting the 10-foot plateau.
“There was some good competition here,” Rogers said. “It was good to see the girls that I have jumped with in our area again. They have been very friendly to me for my first year and I cannot wait to see them again next year.”
It was a whirlwind of excitement for the junior in her first season with the UCHS track and field program under the guidance of first-year head coach Megan Davis and assistant coaches Thad Higgins and Diane Lynch. Davis and Higgins each made the trip to Murfreesboro.
“Coach Davis and coach Higgins have been very supportive this season and have taught me so much,” Rogers said. “I’m super excited for next year. I hope I’m able to make improvements to be able to compete at the state level again.”
The experience was memorable for everyone involved, Davis said.
“Laura saw great competition,” she added. “No matter how many times you go to the state, those nerves are there, so it was good to see Laura adjust and be comfortable for her first-ever trip.
“It was a good day for her … it was rainy, cold, but it was an enjoyable time down there and she was able to see the girls from West Greene and Greeneville from our region.”
While it may be the end of the season, the team will be working during the offseason to prepare for next year, Davis said, as athletes look to improve their event results.
“This trip gives Laura something to strive for next season,” Davis added. “She’s going to be working on her vault techniques over the summer. We’re extremely proud of her and all the athletes this year, but this is just the start for the program. We’re going to keep working on rebuilding the program. It’s still a work in progress, but the future is extremely bright for our kids.”