BYU football commit Parker Kingston wins a dramatic 100-meter state title

The Roy High senior edged Skyridge’s Smith Snowden at the Utah state track and field meet

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Cougar fans cheer on their team as they arrive at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo, Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021, for their game against South Florida. On Saturday, BYU football commit Parker Kingston won the 6A state title in the 100-meters in Provo.

Provo • Two milliseconds.

The human eye can barely register such a minuscule bit of time, but for Roy High School’s Parker Kingston, it would make the difference between an impressive showing and an immortal performance.

Kingston narrowly edged Smith Snowden of Skyridge for the Utah 6A 100-meter dash state title by a margin of 10.533 to 10.535 seconds, headlining one of the fastest 100-meter races in state history with six total runners clocking in under 11 seconds.

“I’ve been working to become a state champ for a really, really long time,” Kingston said. “I wanted one in football, but it didn’t happen, so any way it could happen I just wanted to get one. This one feels more personal just since it’s my own award, it’s really special.”

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Kate Heywood, Morgan High School, celebrates her State Championship win in the Girls 3A 3200 Meter run, at BYU on Friday, May 20, 2022.

Kingston entered Saturday’s meet in Provo with “a major chip” on his shoulder, having finished fifth in the 100- and 200-meter dash state events in 2021 and facing off against defending state champion — and Kingston’s future BYU football teammate — Cody Hagen of Corner Canyon. “Going into a (race) with Smith and Cody ... that’s crazy.”

As the swarm of athletes made a mad dash to the finish line, the results were so close that no one could tell who had been the first to cross, leaving Kingston, Snowden and company to anxiously await the reviewed results on the south scoreboard.

“I couldn’t see which one of us was first since it was too close,” Kingston said. “Looking up at the board and waiting ... I was so nervous.”

Eventually, Kingston’s name flashed as the first-place finisher, a feeling he described as “so awesome,” having improved his 11.09 mark in 2021 by more than half of a second.

While besting Snowden by the skin of his teeth, Kingston said there’s plenty of love between the two talented football prospects, with Kingston committed to play at BYU this coming season and Snowden holding offers from Stanford, Washington State and others as a four-star cornerback.

“I’m pretty good friends with Smith, and I keep trying to tell him to come to the Y with me,” Kingston said.

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Addy Pace, Canyon View is edge out by Grace Gordon from Morgan, in the 3A Girl's 400 meter finals, in the State High School Championship Track Meet at BYU, on Saturday, May 21, 2022.

Snowden called his second-place finish “the biggest thrill of my high school career,” having set a personal best in the 100m dash while establishing himself as one of Utah’s finest runners with another season to elevate even further.

“I’m so happy to get the PR, but I’m excited for next year since I’m a junior so I have another year on me,” Snowden said. “I have so much respect for Cody and Parker. This is a big deal for both of them and I’m really happy for them.”

Defending state champion Hagen came in third place at 10.62 seconds. Cody Hone of Bingham, Nick Sanders of Layton and Corner Canyon’s Aiden McDonald rounded out the group of sub-11 second finishers. Cannon DeVries of Weber — another BYU football commit — finished ninth at 11.10 seconds.

Hagen ended up getting revenge on Kingston in the 200m, finishing first at 20.97 seconds for his second consecutive state title while Kingston came in second at a 21.33 mark.

“The 100m made me so mad, so my 200m felt like a comeback race to prove what I got,” Hagen said.

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