Cale Wilson wanted to be a high jumper like his father Chad.
The Clinton-Massie sophomore found his niche elsewhere on the track.
Wilson will compete 3:10 p.m. Friday in the OHSAA Division II Track and Field Championships boys 400-meter dash preliminaries at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on the Ohio State campus.
Wilson runs in heat 2, lane 7 in the prelims. His 49.96 second run at the regional meet last week is 12th fastest among the 18 state qualifiers.
Three qualifiers went under 49 seconds in their respective regional meets last week but Wilson is less than a second away from fourth overall.
The top two finishers in each heat of the 400, along with the next five fastest times regardless of heat, will advance to the 9-runner finals 2:05 p.m. Saturday. The top eight finishers will be on the podium to receive medals.
“At the beginning of the year, I didn’t think of myself as a pure 400 runner,” Wilson said. “That’s only come the last few weeks.”
Wilson felt more comfortable as the spring season started as a 200-meter dash runner and a jumper, hoping to better the achievements of his standout father Chad who also was a high jumper at Massie.
While the younger Wilson felt he could compete at a high level in the high jump, he became more of a fan of the 400-meter event.
“I thought I would be pretty good at it (high jump), but I ended the year really liking it (400),” Wilson said.
Still, to get to this point in the year, Wilson said is “a bonus being a sophomore.”
At the regional meet, Wilson said the 400 final field “felt real fast.”
Wilson had a good opening 100 meters, then hit the back straightaway in fine shape. The next 100 meters, though, appeared to be a struggle.
However, when he hit the final stretch, Wilson found “a second wnid” and finished with a flourish.
“You hit that last 100, you can’t leave anything on the track,” he said.
While he didn’t set a school record, Wilson was able to run his first sub-50 quarter. The Massie record is 49.34 set by Dillon Davis in 2012. Wilson said that, and advancing to the championship final, will be his goals at state.
Reach Mark Huber at 937-556-5765, via email [email protected] or on Twitter @wnjsports