Austin’s Quandt and Oballa get on the podium at state track and field meet
Published 12:15 pm Saturday, June 11, 2016
ST. PAUL – Three Austin track and field athletes had a strong showing at the Minnesota Class AA State Track and Field meet in Hamline University Saturday.
Austin senior Rachel Quandt finished her AHS track and field career on a high note as she was able to get on the podium for the first time. Quandt wasn’t able to re-set her school record, but she still ran a time of 15.10 seconds to take ninth place in the 100-hurdles.
Quandt ran in Friday’s preliminaries, she went back to Austin for her graduation ceremony Friday night and she was back in St. Paul Saturday morning to run in the finals.
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“I’m just really grateful that I got to run today in the finals,” Quandt said. “It was a really busy time, but it helped keep my mind off the race and it calmed my nerves.”
East Ridge’s Karina Joiner won the 100-hurdles and her time of 13.94 seconds in the preliminaries is a new state record.
“It’s fun to race against someone like that and see what she does,” said Quandt, who will run a the University of South Dakota next year.
Austin sophomore Sydney Marsh put an exclamation point on a breakthrough season when she was able to clear a height in the pole vault that she had been aiming for since before the season.
Marsh cleared 10 foot, three-inches on her third vault attempt, but she wasn’t able to clear 10-9 to get into medal contention.
Before this season, Marsh was just hoping to clear ten feet and by the Section 1A meet she was hitting the 10-6 mark. After an 11th place finish at state, she’s aiming to make even bigger strides next year.
“I want to keep coming back and keep getting better. Hopefully I can get on the medal stand next year,” Marsh said. “I wasn’t sure if I wanted to keep doing [pole vault], but my coach was pushing me and telling me I would get better this year. I worked hard in the offseason and it really paid off.”
Andriana Jacobs of Rochester Century won the pole vault with a state record height of 13-3.
Austin junior Odongonga Oballa took eighth place in the 400-meter dash with a time of 58.78 seconds, which was nearly a full second faster than her preliminaries time.
“It was a good finish,” Oballa said.
Honour Finley of Bloomington Kennedy won the 400-meter dash with a time of 54.45 seconds.