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El Dorado’s Neecko Davis turned in one of the state’s top performances this season Thursday when he cleared 6-foot-9 to win the boys high jump competition at the Cardinal Relays in Camden. Davis had already won the event at 6-foot-8 before notching his career-best jump on his first attempt.

“He looked fresh. He looked real good,” said El Dorado high jump coach Donnie Tank. “He only missed one jump. He only missed one jump between 6-feet and 6-9.”

Davis’ previous high in a meet was 6-foot-6, although Tank said he’d gone higher in practice.

“When it happened, he surprised me because he said, ‘Coach Tank, that’s easy.’ When he said that’s easy, that means he’s relaxed. He’s confident. He’s on top of it and it’s nothing but a thing for him,” Tank said.

“He’s a good student, a good athlete. I really enjoy coaching him. He listens to what I say. I really enjoy coaching him.”

Davis missed on a pair of attempts at 6-foot-10 before calling it a day.

“He barely nicked it with his calf. We’ve got a slight adjustment that we will make,” said Tank. “He’s not used to being that high. He came out of his back bend too soon. Once I get him to stay in there a little longer, we’ll be good. The first time he hit it with his hand on the way up. On his next attempt, he barely nicked it with his calf. But, it’s in the making.”

Although the final official meet results weren’t posted at press-time, Tank said the competition at the meet helped push his pupil to his career-best height. The last competitor cleared 6-foot-6 before failing at 6-foot-8.

“There was a guy from Magnolia that is competition. I like him jumping against that guy because that helps him jump higher,” said Tank. “Also, there’s a guy from Pine Bluff who jumped better today than he’s jumped all season. He pushed him also. And, the guy from Crossett that I’d never seen before that did pretty good. He’s the guy that went out at 6-6.”

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