• October 20, 2014

Hicks a shadow in Vaughan’s spotlight

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Posted: Sunday, May 13, 2012 12:00 pm | Updated: 10:53 am, Mon Jul 28, 2014.

The loudspeaker boomed and echoed across Mike A. Myers Stadium.

"Shelbi Vaughan of Mansfield Legacy just threw 175 feet, 4 inches and that was just her first throw," the stadium announcer bellowed.

Later, as Vaughan prepared to make her last throw, the entire crowd at the UIL State Track and Field Championships stopped, watched and began to clap in unison.

Then, the senior uncorked a throw of 180-10.

It wasn't her best throw. But, it didn't matter. Vaughan, who is expected to suit up for Texas A&M for both volleyball and track, was one of the biggest spectacles at the state meet this weekend.

Everyone else was regulated to second place - especially Shoemaker junior Cion Hicks, who placed second behind Vaughan in both the discus and shot put Saturday.

Moments before Vaughan's last throw, Hicks had her own contingent of fans clapping.

It wasn't as loud, as daunting and didn't stop the entire meet like Vaughan's clap along. But it propelled her enough to throw 160-10 and earn her a silver medal, which really was the best she could have done.

"I told them to clap for shot put at regionals and I guess they decided to do it here," Hicks said. "I am glad that they did because it got some adrenaline going and helped out a lot."

Hicks knew she wasn't going to win, though.

It just wasn't possible.

Hicks finished 19 feet behind Vaughan, who won with a distance less than two feet short of the boys' winning mark, in the discus and seven in the shot put.

She was competing against the best - perhaps the best of all time. And she and everyone in the stadium knew it.

Hicks might as well have been Patrick Ewing or Charles Barkley competing against Michael Jordan.

Those guys never beat Jordan, no matter how hard they tried.

Hicks was in the same position Saturday as those ringless NBA Hall of Famers.

Vaughan set the national record in the discus at the Texas Relays with a 191-foot, 6-inch throw that was so good that it nearly hit the brick wall that encompasses the outside throwing area at Mike A. Myers Stadium.

There really wasn't a chance to win against her.

Vaughan is too good.

Hicks' throw would have been only two inches shy of the state meet's record, which was set in 2011 at 161-0 by, of course, Vaughan.

In any other year, Hicks would have won the gold medal.

In any other year, she probably would have won two gold medals.

But, Hicks didn't let it get to her.

"No, (competing against her) makes me feel honored, because she is a great thrower," Hicks said. "With her being No. 1 and me being No. 2, I know I have to keep pushing to get where she is at because this is where she was at with a junior."

Unlike,Ewing and Barkley though, Hicks will have her time.

Only a junior, she has one more year and one more chance at a gold medal.

"It is great to know (I would have gold in any other year), but she is building me for next year," Hicks said. "I can't lower my standards just because she isn't there. I have to push, so I can become the girl that everyone wants to chase."

If Hicks can make the same leap Vaughan did from her junior to senior year, she could be the one everyone is chasing.

Next year, she could be Shelbi Vaughan.

"I hope so … I can only hope to do my best," she said. "Hopefully it will be the year of Cion Hicks. That would be great."

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