AUSTIN — Josh Canete never forgot about last year.
The Copperas Cove high jumper’s junior season ended in disappointment after failing to place in his debut appearance at the Class 6A UIL State Track & Field Meet.
Despite the outcome, Canete refused to ignore the performance.
“After not doing so well last year and not clearing the starting height,” the senior said, “it gave me something to look forward to.”
Saturday morning, Canete erased any lingering negative memories by delivering a silver-medal showing, clearing 6 feet, 8 inches at Mike A. Myers Stadium.
Following the outing, the Texas-Arlington commit admitted experiencing a measure of redemption.
“It feels really good,” Canete said. “Knowing you are second in the state is a really good accomplishment.”
Canete had no issues with the opening height of 6-2 before clearing 6-4 on his second attempt. He proceeded to top the 6-6 and 6-8 marks on the first try but could not match his personal best of 6-9 set at the area meet.
Katy Tompkins junior Mason Corbin won the event with a height of 6-11, and San Antonio Johnson’s Jack Scarborough was third, matching Canete’s mark, but the junior required three attempts to clear it.
As the competition unfolded, Canete knew clearing 6-8 would be critical.
“First attempts are crucial,” he said, “and I just knew I had to get that jump, and I did it.”
Canete’s trek back to state began with a second-place showing at the District 8-6A meet, where he topped 6-5. Then, after claiming a gold medal at area, he repeated the feat at regionals with a first-place height of 6-6.
While the level of competition was fierce at state, Canete had to overcome more than just his opponents.
“I don’t usually come out and jump at 8 in the morning,” he said, “so I had to really stretch my body and just wake myself up, because I’m not used to this.”
Regardless of circumstances, Canete, who entered the event with the field’s fourth lowest seed mark, overcame the odds, placing himself among some of the program’s all-time greats, including 2013 state high jump champion Cory Scott.
“It feels good to keep the tradition going,” Canete said.
“There is no doubt, this feels really good.”