KAPLAN — By the end of the boys high jump of the Pirate Relays at Kaplan on Wednesday, all eyes were on Damon “Cookie” Guidry.
The lanky, 5-foot-8 junior from Crowley had already won the event and tied his personal record clearing 6 feet, 8 inches. Now, he was looking to increase his personal best by two inches.
Guidry said he had already achieved a huge feat in his mind by tying his personal record after struggling in meets before Wednesday’s.
“I was in a huge slump,” Guidry said. “It was a mental block. It wasn’t physical at all. … I let it get in my head.”
But clearing 6-10 would be frosting on the cake.
After landing on the bar in his first attempt, Guidry lined up for what would be his best jump of the afternoon. He launched himself off the ground, landed on the mat and turned around just in time to see the bar inch off the stand and onto the ground. He’d nicked it with his foot.
Guidry failed in his third attempt as well, ending his bid for a new personal record, but he was all smiles. He was just happy to be back on track.
“I needed a day like this,” Guidry said. “A day to come out, do well, get myself back and straighten my mind.”
Guidry said he had starting to focus too much on his recent shortcomings, which only proved to extend his cold streak.
Before the start of the high jump, Guidry decided to put his recent performances behind and just have fun competing.
Throughout the event, he was cracking jokes and laughing with his teammates. A smile rarely left his face.
“I’d rather just have fun with it and goof around,” Guidry said. “I try to have as much fun as I can. That way I’m not worried about every single detail ,and I can put it all together over and over again.”
That attitude proved to be the remedy for his recent mental block.
Guidry’s success did not end at the high jump pit. He also earned first place in the 300- meter hurdles.
He said the all-around performance he had at the meet has given him some momentum he hopes will lead to even more improvement in the final weeks of the season.
“Today was a big day,” Guidry said. “Everything fell into place and I did what I had to do. … All I want to do is win.”