NORTON — Whether it be physical or mental, Wise Central senior Maddox Reynolds has met every kind of pain imaginable just like he meets the hurdles — head on.
For the four-time state indoor champion, the winding road back to glory is made of cobblestone streets and has already gone over mountains as tall as High Knob three times.
“It’s been super difficult because in my sophomore year, I tore my patella and then tore my patella again in my junior year of football season,” Reynolds said. “Then near the end of last track season, I tore my patella, lateral meniscus and ACL. I’ve just had to rehab back, had the surgery and then rehabbed again.
“After the first football game where I tore my ACL and everything, I was sitting at my house in denial about my injury and I didn’t want it to be true.”
Reynolds will be one of the top featured athletes from Southwest Virginia in Friday’s 42nd Six Rivers Relays presented by Watauga Orthopaedics at Science Hill’s Kermit Tipton Stadium.
He is the top seed in the 300-meter hurdles and currently second best in the 110s.
“The journey has made me a better person,” Reynolds said. “The hard work and effort has made it so much better and so much more surreal. It’s been an awesome experience to be able to get hurt, rehab, get better, then do it all over again.”
FAMILY OF WINNERS
To say that Reynolds comes from an athletically decorated family would be an understatement.
His first cousin Logan Reynolds is one of the most decorated girls basketball players in Southwest Virginia history, helping lead the Lady Warriors to VHSL Class 2A championships in 2014 and 2015. She went on to play for James Madison.
Maddox and Logan’s aunt Cristal Reynolds Meade was a track standout at Pound, finishing as state runner-up in the 200 dash in 1985 and 1986.
The 1985 Lady Wildcats were the runners-up in the team race with 38 points. Where’d the majority of the points on that squad come from?
From two-time state high jump champion Kelly Shortt Jackson, another cousin of Maddox’s.
When the family gets together, the competitive tension is so thick you’d need a butcher knife to hack through it.
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“Everything we do is competitive,” Maddox Reynolds said. “We play card games like spoons and we have people trying to rip each other’s fingers off trying to get a spoon. It’s the most competitive atmosphere and it’s driven me to this new sense of competitiveness.”
Though Reynolds has been injured the majority of his outdoor career and had his sophomore year nixed by the pandemic, he’s had a bounty of success indoors.
In fact, he’s in some rarefied air when it comes to the number of times he’s won the Class 2 55-meter hurdles.
Reynolds is one of only two athletes in VHSL history ever to win an individual indoor event four times, matching the feat that Potomac long jumper Mike Newell accomplished from 1996-1999.
“It was an …….