A short time after it began, the coronavirus pandemic forced the CIF to cancel the rest of the spring sports season, which meant an abrupt ending to the high school careers of spring sports seniors around the central valley. As a way of honoring some of these outstanding seniors, our Sports Central team will be presenting a series of stories called “Senior Standouts” each Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday through the end of June.
MERCED, Calif. (KGPE) – They say a picture is worth a thousand words. If so, what does this picture say about Kevin Seals?
“At first, I wasn’t really interested and then I went out there and I did it, it felt good,” says the Merced High School senior. “It just felt different. I like different, so it was different, so I did it. And then I started to practice at it and became better.”
In a very short amount of time.
It was just last year when Kevin Seals first got started in high jump. At the 2019 Masters, his best jump was 6’2.”
This year thus far? 6’6.”
“What’s really amazing about Kevin as an athlete is you just set the bar and then he’s like, ‘okay I’ll jump over it,'” says Leticia Rivero, one of his coaches at Merced High School. “It hasn’t been where he lets the numbers get in his head. Like, ‘oh, it’s a certain height.'”
Seals had competed in other track events before getting involved with high jump. And he may not focus on the numbers while he’s jumping. Afterwards? It’s hard not to: his new personal record of 6’6″ is in the top seven in the state.
“It showed that all my hard work is paying off, and it’s getting my name out there,” he said. “The goal was to go to state and at least do top three.”
Adds Rivero, “We were definitely looking forward to seeing…I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how far he can go in the next four years.”