PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) – A local 7-year-old runner, Jeice Crooks, is headed to Texas for the AAU Junior Olympics after qualifying in two track events at Regionals in Tallahassee.
His mother, Ranneta Crooks, was very excited to see him qualify, and said she was going to make sure the trip to Humble, Texas, would be possible.
“I got on my phone and started looking for plane tickets,” Crooks said. “That was the first like, oh my god, my kid is going to Texas, so lets put forth this, and whatever it takes, we’re going to be there.”
Jeice qualified in the 100m and 400m races for the AAU Junior Olympics for his age group, and his mother says his speed is something that people have taken notice of for a while now.
“He started playing soccer at the age of five,” Crooks said. “And I mean this kid would be up the field, a kid would come up the field with the ball and then Jeice was just right there, and after the game we’d have parents like ‘this kid is fast,’ so ever since then, its just, he gets better and better.”
Crooks first began his running on a track within the past year, and it was only two weeks ago that he started getting coached by Bay High’s track and field coach, Adrianna Hill, who said he has a lot of talent.
“They was like, you need to see this kid,” Hill said. “So I watched him, I was like he got great talent, he’s got great potential, I’m so excited. And so, his mom reached out to me, and it’s been up from there ever since.”
Crooks is extremely excited for the upcoming games, and Hill says an appearance in the actual Olympic games could be something in his future, he’ll probably just have to wait until 2032.
“Jeice is on the way,” Hill said. “He’s up and rising, wait for him, he’ll be there.”
The AAU Junior Olympic games are set for July 31, to August 7, in Humble, Texas.