Rock Hill’s Cox claims D3 state long jump title

Published 9:56 pm Thursday, May 30, 2024

Rock Hill Redmen track standout Izaak Cox stands atop the podium after winning the Division 3 state long jump on Thursday at Welcome Stadium in Dayton.


Izaak Cox takes in the electronic sign that projects his winning accomplishment along with the winning distance.


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DAYTON — When Isaak Cox holds up his index finger signifying No.1, he has the evidence to back it up.

The Rock Hill Redmen junior leaped 22-feet, 11.25 inches to win the Division 3 state long jump championship on Thursday at Dayton University’s Welcome Stadium.

Cox became only the second Rock Hill track athlete to win a state championship. Chris Damron won the high jump with a leap of 6-10 in 1992.

“I didn’t know if anyone else (from Rock Hill) was state champion. It struck me because I don’t think we’re on the map like we should because we have good athletes. But it’s because our district and region are so hard,” said Cox.

Cox won on his first jump as he beat Corbin Bloomfield of Buckeye Central who had a personal best 22-6.75, also on his first attempt.

Cox had jumps of 22-11.25, 19-9.25, 21-5, 21-1.25, 21-9.5 and 20-.4-75.

“My first jump is always my best. I knew when I jumped out I looked and said I’m good,” said Cox.

One problem jumpers can have is the different spring boards at every facility. Cox jumped at Ohio State’s Jesse Owens Stadium last year and had never jumped at Welcome Stadium.

“We were worried about that. At the district I was jumping 23 but I was jumping from the back (of the springboard). My biggest fear is to jump from the back and then hit one of my legs and not be able to run and not be able to jump anymore,” said Cox. “But I was okay up here and I was calm.”

While Cox and Bloomfield are juniors, the next two place finishers were seniors which sets up Cox as the favorite to repeat next year and he said that is his goal.

“I’ve got one more year. That’s always the goal. That’s what it was last year. I just try to get better. There’s only two out of the top four to come back next year. The others graduate,” he said.

Cox finished second last year in the long jump at 23-0.25.

Cox had an eventful day as he ran a 22.36 seconds in the 200-meter dash preliminaries to qualify for the finals. His time was the fifth best overall in the preliminaries.

The 200-meter dash finals are Friday at 7:55 p.m.