Shark Attack in Mankato! The Report from USATF Region 8

John List launches the 800 gram javelin down range
July 11, 2016

Five athletes from MAESSTC made the trek to Minnesota State - Mankato to compete in the USATF Region 8 Junior Olympic Qualifier on July 7th - 10th. Region 8 consists of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin. Each Shark arrived with two goals in mind. First, as always... to improve their personal records in each of their events, and second, to qualify to compete in the USATF National Junior Olympics starting July 25th at Sacramento State University in Sacramento, CA. To qualify, athletes had to finish in the top five in each individual open event, while those competing in combined events (Pentathlon, & Decathlon), had to finish in the top two, or exceed a national qualifying point threshold.

Ali Dorn (15) competed very well in her events. In the 100M dash prelims on Saturday, Ali easily qualified for the finals with a time of 13.09. The real excitement came during the finals on Sunday. Ali burst out to an early lead, and at the 80 meter mark still held the lead by a slim margin. The tale at the tape was the closest 1-2 finish I have ever seen! Ali took 2nd place with a time of 12.609, while the winner's time was 12.608. While the disappointment of such a narrow setback was evident in Ali's face, the official time of 12.61 tied her PR, and easily qualifies her for nationals. In the 400M dash Ali turned in a 58.93, good for 4th place, and also qualifies her to move on. Congratulations Ali!

Newcomer Jacob Fisher (14) took on the task of the boys Pentathlon on Friday. Pentathlon consists of the 100M low hurdles, high jump, shot put, long jump, and 1500M run. Jacob's first attempt at this challenge was at USATF Wisconsin just weeks ago. With a few weeks to practice and become better accustomed to some new events, Jacob raised his score from 1704 to 2097... a 393 point improvement! While Jacob finished in 4th place, his score was just 140 points out of 1st place. This positive experience will set the table for next year when Jacob will be 15 and old enough to tackle the Decathlon. In the 100M dash Jacob met with more success. On Saturday, Jacob was the last athlete into the finals with a preliminary time of 13.04. However, on Sunday, Jacob improved his time and place by running a 12.81 and moving up to 5th place. A national qualifier! Jacob also competed in Javelin on Sunday, and threw the 600 gram missile 74'-1" (11th place) into a chilly rain soaked headwind. Congratulations Jacob!

Both Rhys Enderle (17) and Patrick Horvath (15) came to Mankato to compete in the weight events... Shot Put and Discus. Rhys qualified for nationals with throws of 138'-11" in the discus and 43'-9 1/4" in the shot put, good for 5th place and 4th place respectively. While Patrick did not qualify to move on, he improved his PR in the discus to 103'-9" (12th place) and absolutely smashed his previous shot put PR by more than 4 feet! That's crazy improvement! Patrick's throw of 42'-9" was good enough to place 6th. Congratulations to both Rhys and Patrick!

John List (16) arrived on the Minnesota State campus to tangle with the Decathlon. Thursday brought the 100M dash, Long Jump, Shot Put, High Jump and the 400M dash. Friday's events were the 110M High Hurdles, Discus, Pole Vault, Javelin, and 1500M run. A few events went as expected and included a PR tied in the high jump (1.62 meters) which was held in a steady downpour. But overall, through 8 events things had not exactly gone John's way, and he held on to 2nd place by just 9 points. But following event 8, there was a lengthy delay, and John decided it was time to turn things around. The competition moved to the javelin. John's throw of 142'-10 was not only good enough to win the event, and was not just a PR, but also smashed the USATF Region 8 record (which John set last year, and which have been maintained since 1984) by more than 14 feet! Moving on to the 1500M run, John then set another PR of 5:18.88 which was an improvement of nearly 17 seconds from his mark at USATF Wisconsin. His determined turn around placed John comfortably in 2nd place with a score of 5107. Saturday brought a 4th place finish in the open 110M High Hurdles, while Sunday featured a 2nd place finish in the open javelin. A national qualifier in all three events. Congratulations John, and good luck in Sacramento!

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