PA’s small but deadly long jumper


Staff Report

Most long jumpers are tall with long legs that allow them to propel forward and over the sandpit at great distances. But senior Desairey Gray is only 5’3″.

Nonetheless, she finished second at the state indoor track meet recently, two inches behind the winner.

“It was my personal best, so I was happy,” said Gray of her 18-feet, 6 3/4-inch leap.

As for her size, she said, “Yes, I am smaller than most long jumpers, but it is really just about repetition. Over and over again.”

Her coach, William Brumage, says size is not a factor with Gray. “It is not surprising at all,” that she can leap so far despite her lack of size. “To know Des is to know someone who is motivated, fearless, and insanely athletic. She can do it all.”

Interestingly, she also placed fourth in the tricky triple jump even though she did not start practicing it until about three weeks before the post-season. It is sometimes called the “hop, skip, and jump.”

“We knew that Des eventually had to start triple jumping to make her more attractive to college recruiters,” according to Brumage. “Our focus was initially to start training for it during the indoor season and debut it during the outdoor season. Des being the athlete and hard worker she is, we felt comfortable enough to let her see what she could do in a meet a few weeks prior to indoor states and she ran with it.”

Bruamge has no problem singing her praises. “We can’t say enough about what Des means to the Princess Anne track team. She is the standard. Des leads every drill, rep, and lift. Des teaches the newbies and holds the veterans, including herself, accountablea born leader. The sky is not the limit for her, it’s just a stop along the way.”


To watch Desairey in action, visit: