GERALDINE — Not one, not two, not three — but four.
Four AHSAA state championships; that’s how many Geraldine junior Collin Mayfield has on his resume as a high school athlete following a historic run at last weekend’s AHSAA State Indoor 1A-7A Championship in Birmingham.
After garnering more success than most high school athletes could fathom, Mayfield’s interest continues to be on whatever is his next challenge.
“It’s an awesome accomplishment, but I’m really just looking toward the future,” Mayfield said during an interview with The Times-Journal on Monday.
During Mayfield’s two-day stint in Birmingham, he earned three state championships in Class 1-3A’s 800-meter run, 1600-meter run and 3200-meter run, respectively.
His latest championship trilogy joined the Class 3A state cross country championship he earned last fall.
In her first year coaching Mayfield, Geraldine coach Jadie Chester said she knew Mayfield had such a string of performances in him, but to see the success play out was something different.
“I was super-proud of him,” Chester said. “To actually see it happen was pretty amazing.”
Mayfield said his confidence to win was high in the 1600-meter and 3200-meter races, but said the 800-meter race had a tougher level of competition.
Mayfield said he was favored to finish second in the 800-meter event. He crossed the finish line at 2:02.64, just 0.05 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher, Providence Christian’s Conner Patterson.
In the race, Mayfield shifted from fourth place to third place until the last lap. Mayfield said he and a couple of other runners caught the leader and passed him. Then, it came to Mayfield and Patterson pulling even with each other and fighting to create separation all the way to the finish line.
“I barely got him,” Mayfield said.
After only competing in the 800-meter race twice, Mayfield’s 2:02 was a personal record.
Mayfield said he was pleased with his execution in last Saturday’s 1600-meter race. He was as pleased as he could be considering he didn’t run the race with fresh legs.
“Going into it, I was extremely sore and I knew it was just time to man up and get the job done,” Mayfield said.
Mayfield’s cross country coach, Robin Bynum, wasn’t able to attend the event in Birmingham last weekend, but she streamed the competition through the NFHS Network and watched Mayfield’s races.
“He ran a really smart race, especially in the 800,” Bynum said. “He’s got the timing down, he puts forth the effort when it’s needed and he saves energy until it’s needed.
“I was blown away by his success on Friday and Saturday.”
Chester also noted Mayfield’s ability to harness energy and expend it at the right times playing a key part in his success.
“He paced himself very well,” she said.
Fort Payne junior Madi Wallace, who won the girls Class 6A state title in the 60-meter hurdle event, said she watched both of Mayfield’s races last Friday.
“He was very fast when I saw him,” she said.
Mayfield’s junior campaign isn’t over yet. There’s still the outdoor track and field season ahead of him.
After quitting basketball to focus his athletic effort on running, Mayfield said he’s looking forward to putting a lot more time into training this summer and hopes to make an even bigger splash in his senior year.
“Collin sets a goal and he’s going to try his best to reach that goal,” Bynum said. “He works to reach that goal just so he can set another one.”