She saw, and she jumped.
Jada Grant, the often celebrated track and field athlete from LaGrange, picked up another honor on Saturday, July 13 in Orlando, Fla. Grant, the 18 year old phenom, was chosen as an All-American at an AAU meet at Disney World.
“I showed my A game, and I trusted my training. I knew I was going to have to go out and do something,” said Grant.
She finished fourth out of 96 competitors in the long jump. Grant had a top jump of 18 feet. Grant was going up against long jumpers from Puerto Rico, the Bahama Islands, Jamaica and the United States at the AAU Club Nationals.
It was intimidating for Grant with a stadium full of muscular athletes. There was around 1,000 athletes in the building with the other events included at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
“There was a lot of energy. It was loud, and I heard the cheering. But I stayed consistent. I brought my speed down the runway,” said Grant. “I don’t like to lose. I just compete.”
The daughter of Clifton and Janice Grant is having the best year of his track and field career. Just two months ago, Jada Grant won the girls high school long jump state title at the Class AAAA meet in Albany.
Grant floated on a cloud for a first place jump of 18 feet, 9 ½ inches. Grant also left with a second place medal in the triple jump. The Lady Granger senior was the state runner- up with a triple jump of 38 feet, 1 ½ inches.
In August, Grant will be off to Mississippi State for another personal milestone. Grant has signed a track and field scholarship with the Lady Bulldogs. Grant will long jump and triple jump for MSU.
The multi-talented Jada Grant will also run the 60 meters and 100 meters for Mississippi State. As for Thursday afternoon, Grant was back on the track working out and running at the Chris Joseph Olympic Facility in La-Grange.
“I don’t want to get out of shape,” said Grant, who is Starkville, Miss. bound.
She is running 10.5 miles a day this summer. Grant is also finetuning her jumps. And she is watching her weight closely.
“I’m changing my diet. I can’t have fast food. I can’t have pizza, hamburgers or ice cream (any more). Those are all the things I love,” said Grant.
She is still making sacrifices for track and field.
“I’m working harder,”said Grant, who will next compete at the AAU Junior Olympics in Greensboro, N.C. from July 27 through Aug. 3.
Jada Grant always has something on her track and field plate besides salad, tomatoes and lowcalorie dressing.
The author of this article can be reached via email at info@troupcountynews. net.