When it comes to athletic success, Trousdale County is clearly known for football more than any other sport.
But the 2018 track & field team enjoyed its own moment in the sun last week as sophomore Emily Booth competed in the state track meet at Murfreesboro.
Booth, who also played basketball this year, placed third in the small school meet in the discus with a throw of 107 feet, 7 inches and sixth in the shot put with a toss of 32 feet, 9¾ inches.
She became just the second Yellow Jacket ever to qualify for the state meet, joining Kayla Howell, who placed fourth in the long jump in 2006.
“It feels good to be only the second person to do it,” Booth said.
Making state was Booth’s goal from the start of the season, as she said it gave her motivation to work harder all season long.
Booth, who transferred in this past school year, has been competing in track and field since the seventh grade. Shot and discus are the only sports in which she competes.
“I started in seventh grade and I’ve grown to like it,” Booth said. “I just like working hard.”
Her father, Scott Booth, served as head coach of the track team this year and as defensive coordinator of the football team.
“Sometimes it’s tough because he expects more from me,” Emily said of having her father as coach. “I keep that in mind so I always go as hard as I can.”
“We wanted to work every day to try to get better, and that’s what everyone did,” said Scott Booth. “Mackenzie Vaughn qualified for the sectionals in the 400 (meters), and they all improved their times throughout the year.
“Working with my daughter, I try to treat her like any other. At the same time, she has to go home with me so I have to keep that in mind!” he joked.
Emily credited her teammates, including throwing partner Rob Henry, in helping push her toward greater success.
“All through practice, even on weekends, I’ll stay outside working and trying to get better,” she said. “Even at the state meet, I didn’t feel like I did to the best of my abilities. There was some tough competition.”
Emily plans to continue pushing herself to improve with a goal of winning a state championship. Unfortunately, if she does it will not be at Trousdale County, as her father has taken a coaching job in Mississippi in order to be closer to his family.
“I’ll miss the atmosphere here,” Emily said. “I loved this track team this year; they’re my best friends and we got along really great. I’ll miss them.”
Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or firstname.lastname@example.org.