By Thomas Sellers Jr.
Back home in Brighton, she got a phone call informing her she will be a section leader in the Brighton High School Band for brass. With that positive momentum, Hood headed to the Shot Put finals of the TSSAA Large Class Track Meet on the campus of Middle Tennessee State University Thursday morning.
Moments later it was Hood’s turn to pick up her cell phone and start calling friends and family back in Tipton County she celebrate her throw of 40 feet. The toss was good enough for the bronze medal of the Shot Put finals. Hood hit the 40-mark on her final of six throws.
“It started off pretty good,” Hood said about her day. “On my other throws I felt a lot of pressure because I had another throw afterwards. But on my final throw, ‘This is my last throw. I should be happy about it.’ I was happy and I went up there. I did what I usually do.”
Hood finished only behind Wilson Central’s Zoe Vlk with a throw of 44-09 and Jaycee Schroeder of Jefferson County who threw as 44-04.
“I am so happy I hit 40 feet,” Hood said. “I did it once before about a year ago. So I am really happy I did it here at State.”
Hood’s third-place finish is the highest for a Lady Cardinal in track since Kimi Jennings won back-to-back pole vault championships in 2009 and 2010.
“That’s pretty awesome,” Hood said. “I didn’t know we had another (girl) who went to State. Going to State is awesome already.”
Hood has reached State in the Shot Put and Discus finals each year of her Lady Cardinal career. Right by her side has been Coach Courtney McGinnis.
“I am proud of her,” McGinnis said. “I think her senior year is going to be extremely awesome for her. I think we’re going to try to punch into that No. 1 or 2 spot next year. I think she can throw into those 44s like the others.
“She’s already made steps as far as taking classes and hitting the weight room,” Coach concluded. “She’s trying to push it to that next level. As college gets closer, she sees opportunities that she’s got. I think that will push her as well.”
Hood took 11th place in the Discus with a throw of 98-04. Vlk was the winner once again with a throw of 128-10.