By COLIN WILSON cwilson@MorningJournal.com

Amherst’s Tyler Parrish jumped 6-10 at last week’s Lorain County Invitational and he’ll have some stiff competition on his home track this week as his team hosts the 56th annual Comet Relays.

It was a meet record and a personal record for Parrish, who is chasing the elusive 7-foot mark this season and even came close to clearing it when the bar was raised at the meet.

There’s no question that Parrish has worked hard after falling short of his goal at last year’s state meet. After winning or tying for first in every meet last season through regionals, Parrish finished 12th at the state meet, four inches shy of his personal best and the state champion from Strongsville, Deverin Muff.

“After football was done he just made track his top priority,” Amherst head coach Rob Glatz said. “I think he realized he needed to get used to top competition.”

Parrish is coming off a great showing at the state indoor meet where he cleared 6-9 for the state title.

Parrish’s mother, Danielle, was a state runner up in the high jump at Vermilion and a Big Ten indoor champion. His father, Monty, was also a standout athlete and holds a place in the Amherst record books.

“They’re really supportive of him,” Glatz said.

Mike Lugar, a high school teammate of Glatz and the team’s high jump coach, jumped for Danielle in high school and helped the Comets to the 1996 SWC Championship by scoring 38 points on his own, winning three events — including high jump — and placing runner up in a fourth.

“It’s really neat that Mike is able to coach Tyler,” Glatz said. “I’m just so glad to have him come back to Amherst and pass on this tradition.”

Parrish has also become more of a leader for the Comets after attending a leadership council with some of his teammates. Continued