Vicksburg’s Henderson wins Class 5A triple jump championship; Vample collects two medals

Published 10:14 pm Wednesday, May 10, 2023

PEARL — Tyler Henderson didn’t really care about where he finished in the long jump at the MHSAA Class 5A state track and field meet — which was good, since he was fifth.

Henderson’s focus was solely on the triple jump, and in that event he had no equal.

The Vicksburg High junior set the benchmark no one could top with his first attempt, a mark of 46 feet, 9 1/2 inches that stood up as the winner and sent him to the top of the podium as the Class 5A champion.

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“It’s a big accomplishment to end my junior year, because my sophomore year I came second with a 43. This year I improved to a 46-9. I was just working on my form in practice,” Henderson said.

Henderson’s winning mark in the triple jump was nearly 3 feet farther than his nearest challenger. Romen Williams of Ridgeland finished second, at 43-10, and Long Beach’s Andre Windham was third at 43-6 1/4.

“Your first jump should always be your best jump because your legs are fresh,” Henderson said. “I saw everybody’s face changing. It’s a pretty big confidence-booster knowing nobody can jump what you jump.”

Henderson had a very respectable mark of 21-11 in the long jump — more than a foot better than his seeding of 20-7 3/4 — and was not far off from getting another medal. Columbus’ Delmere Hudgins took second place with a leap of 22-3, just four inches farther than Henderson. Hattiesburg teammates Javarius Molden and Maddox Brown were third and fourth at 22-2 and 22-1, respective.

George County’s Justin Knight crushed the field with a jump of 23-4 1/4, however.
Henderson didn’t mind. He was happy with his triple jump gold medal.

“It feels pretty good to know how hard I worked, and that nobody compared to me,” he said. “It’s a good way to end my junior year. I like it.”

Vicksburg’s boys’ team had a limited roster in the Class 5A meet, but still totaled 34 points to finish in eighth place in the team standings. Ridgeland racked up 100.5 points to take the team title.

The 4×100 meter relay team of Maurice Taylor, Nick Mickey, JD Kelly and Koury Vample finished sixth.

In individual events, sophomore Malachi Drake finished sixth in the discus, while Vample won two medals in the hurdles events.

Vample finished third in the 300 meter hurdles, with a time of 39.42 seconds. Callaway’s Rkhyzon Cleveland won in 38.84 seconds and Hattiesburg’s Molden was second in 39.10.

Vample got a silver to go with his bronze in the 110 meter hurdles. He clocked a time of 14.72 seconds to finish about a half-second behind Ridgeland’s Jamari Page. Molden was third in 14.86 seconds.

“What went right was, I got a good start,” Vample said of his effort in the 110. “Between the hurdles I wound up losing form and that’s why I came in second. I was in first at first. It was a good race, though. Super happy.”

In the Class 3A meet, Port Gibson’s boys’ team went 2-for-2 on medals in its individual events. JuKown Frye finished third in the 300 meter hurdles, with a time of 41.95 seconds, and DeVontae Herrington was also third in the 800 meters in 2:06.82.

The Blue Waves’ 4×800 meter relay team finished eighth.

In the Class 1A meet, South Delta had two medalists. Brandon Anderson finished third in the 110 meter hurdles, with a time of 16.83 seconds. Jeremiah Stapleton snagged a silver in the shot put with a throw of 52.40 seconds.

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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