Despite a strong wind that seemed to come from all directions at once sometimes, Alex met the challenge today and qualified for a trip to the State Track meet at the Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on the grounds of Ohio State University.
Alex qualified with the exact same time that he qualified for the Regional Finals with — a time of 50.77 seconds in the 400m. He came in 3rd place, and he's the only Junior (11th grader in High School) to move on to the State tournament (all of the others to qualify were Seniors).
Here's the video of his run (listen to how hard the wind was blowing)…
If you know, or have ever met, Alex, you know that he's a tall, lanky fellow. So, seeing him in the 3rd place position on the awards blocks was kind of funny. Even though he's in the 3rd place spot on the block, his head is still on the same level as the 2nd and 1st place finishers. Notice the 1st place winner, though. Alex and I both really liked the uniforms this team wore. The emblem on the chest of the uniform makes them look like superheroes. How can you *not* be intimidating wearing a superhero costume? Alex indicated he may try to talk his coach into new uniforms for next year.
Alex's height has always been a plus, because being tall usually means you're generally not fast. This causes other runners to underestimate his speed. Today, however, his height was a detriment because he had a much higher profile to the wind, which slowed him down considerably. So, you can understand a bit what a feat it was to finish even 3rd. He said that at times he felt he was moving in slow motion. He felt he was in one of those dreams where you run as fast as you can but don't get anywhere.
Yet, here's our boy, wearing his Regional hardware (bling) proudly:
He didn't take it off for several hours even after we made it back home today. And, incidentally, he's still wearing his track uniform.
After the race the local newspaper grabbed him for an interview. Alex said he gave them the standard sports comments like "I'm pleased to do well today" and "I'm really excited to be moving on". Funny guy. So, I should have more to post tomorrow about this when the local paper releases. What's interesting is that his interview will be in the Sunday paper — the biggest paper of the week. That should get some additional attention from potential colleges.
So, yeah. We're off to Ohio State University on Thursday of this week. Alex's qualifying run is on Friday, June 6th, at 3:10pm. If he finishes in the top 4 of his heat on Friday, he'll run again on Saturday, June 7th, at 2:05pm. We're going to make a fun, family weekend of it.
If you happen to be in the Ohio State area either of those days, drop by and look us up, and sit down to watch our boy run. We'll be in Building 092 on the Ohio State campus.
Located on Fred Taylor Drive, north of Lane Avenue, Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium is the newest addition to The Ohio State University Department of Athletics’ aggressive campaign to upgrade and build state-of-the-art facilities for competition.
The 10,000-seat Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium arguably is one of the finest multi-sport facilities in the country, hosting track and field and lacrosse in the spring and soccer in the fall.
Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium JO
2450 Fred Taylor Dr
Columbus, OH 43210