The oldest track & field blog on the internet

Sunday, June 03, 2007

State Meet

You can read all about the meet at Dyestat, or any of several hundred newspaper articles about it; I see no need to give a blow-by-blow accounting of who won what and how fast they ran. Rather, I'll give my experience as a fan.

This is a two day meet, but I wasn't able to get down to Columbus soon enough on Friday to see the events I really wanted to see--the 4x800 relay finals of each division and the D-I boys' shot put. The latter event only interested me because I'd never yet seen Jimmie Pacifico, the nation's #1 shot-putter. I saw his first few attempts in the discus, where he was a heavy favorite.
But Chris Littleon of Harrison had a huge day, putting up his best four throws of the year while Pacifico threw "only" 179' 4". This would have to be considered one of, if not the, biggest upsets of the meet.

I went over to watch the Division II running events, where Mantua Crestwood's Cassandra Schenk was attempting an impossible 1600m-800m-3200m triple in a 75-minute time frame. She came close, with two wins and a second. Amongst the pleasant surprises was Sandusky Perkins' Cory Leslie:

Back in the pack for the first several laps, he ran his last 600m in dominating fashion and came within a few tenths of the meet record...and school record. When you're getting close to Scott Fry's marks, you're getting somewhere.

After D-II was over, I went back to the discus area for the Division III girls' competition. Although her school is only 20 minutes away from my house, I'd never seen Emily Pendleton throw.

Her best is only 5 feet off the national high school record and I was hoping to see a big mark. Her second throw did establish a D-III meet record of 163' 4", but this year that's a very average day for her.

Then back to the track for the Division I running events. First off, I totally underestimated Glenville's quality, which was apparent right from the first event. Second, the big day I'd hoped Toledo would have didn't quite happen. We got a first, three seconds and a third.

The heart-breaker of the day was Central Catholic's Sam Hogue. He had been running much better than the rest of the state for a month, and led into the final hurdle...which his trail leg caught and he hit the deck.

Most of my event-by-event predictions were wrong. I was exactly right about the two events I've paid the most attention to, the boys' 1600m and 3200m. So I guess I've been not enough of a fan.

A lot of people don't like the D-III meet beacuse the standards of competition aren't as high. First of all, I think that's crap. Look at this:That's Stephanie Morgan with 80 meters to go in the 1600; second place is just entering the curve.

Secondly, the most interesting thing at a track meet is not the clock but the athletes fighting to win. Whether they're fast or not is secondary. And these small schools represent the best part of high school sports. An entire town will turn out to see one kid run, and they're immensely proud of them no matter how they finish.

My pick for the most exciting race of the day: D-III boys 300m hurdles. Columbus Grove's shot at the title was based on two athletes, thrower Cory Muelmann and hurdler/vaulter Heath Nickles. The two already scored 28 points and this was the last event they were in. Nickles ran like a scared rabbit in lane 8 and was behind until the very last step, after which he took a face-plant on the track. Everybody watched the scoreboard because we couldn't tell who actually won; the ten or so seconds we waited for the results seemed like they took forever. At the time I thought it sealed a win for Columbus Grove (site of the ever-popular Beer Bottle Open) but I hadn't counted on Dayton Christian having basically a perfect meet--in four distance races they were only beaten by Samuel Borchers, which is essentially like four wins.

And then on the way home I got to hear A Prarie Home Companion. A perfect ending to a great day.

1 comment:

Brady said...

Dear Blogger,

Your blog clearly shows that you are an enthusiastic running fan, so I thought you should know about the World Championship Sports Network (WCSN). We provide coverage of Olympic and lifestyle sports, and our track and field site ( has become a premiere destination for track and field fans all over the world.

We will be broadcasting a lot of the IAAF Track and Field meets, and we are trying to reach out to passionate and knowledgeable track and field fans to let them know they can watch these events on our website, as well as view past meets on-demand, check out photos, get the latest news, and much more. We would like to offer you an FREE WCSN account so that you don’t miss any of the action, and can get excited and help promote our coverage of the World Championships in Athletics, the World Youth Championships, and much more.

Upcoming Track and Field Events:

IAAF Grand Prix 6/8/07 Lille, FRA
IAAF Grand Prix 6/10/07 Bydgosczc, POL
IAAF Odlozila Memorial 6/13/07 Prague, CZE
IAAF Grand Prix 6/17/07 Warsaw, POL
IAAF World Youth Championships 7/11/07-7/15/07 Ostrava, CZE
IAAF World Championships in Athletics 8/25/07-9/2/07 Osaka, JAP
IAAF World Athletics Final 9/22/07-9/23/07 Stuttgart, GER
IAAF Road Running World Championships 10/14/07 Udine, ITA

We also have a large archive of past events on-demand, such as the 2006 World Indoor Championships and the London Marathon. Please let me know if you would like a complimentary account and we will set it up right away. Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing back from you.

Best regards,

Brady Stevenson
World Championship Sports Network
(310) 921-7008

Home of World Champions