Game On - Spring 2024

T unnel vision, that’s what Feddersen took into the 2023 state track and field meet inside Drake Stadium in Des Moines. They didn’t care about the stage, the crowd, the pomp and circumstance ... none of it. They were there to win a Class 3A 4x800-meter relay state championship, and 9 mi- nutes, 29.11 seconds later they succeeded. Clare Stahr, Sophia Bleich, Keira Andersen, and Sarah And what does an encore look like for the quartet that comes back intact this spring? Well, for starters, a second state cham- pionship isn’t the only goal. They’re looking for immortality of sorts, which is why 9:17.72 is what they’re now focused on. That’s the time Mount Vernon- Lisbon ran in 2010 to set the 3A state record. A year older, a year wiser, and a year stronger, that number isn’t necessarily safe with this group of Tigers on the prowl. “That group of girls, I don’t think there’s anything they can’t do if they set their minds to it,”

girls’ head coach Jodi Hurn said of her middle distance stars. “If that’s what they say they’re going to do, they’re going to give it every ounce of what they have.” The all-time girls’ 4x800 record (9:09.09, Iowa City West, 2009) and state-meet record (9:09.34, Waukee, 2018) are probably safe, but if early- season results are any indica- tion, Gilbert’s group is conceding nothing. In its first outdoor meet of the season in late March, the quar- tet met the blue standard to automatically qualify for the Drake Relays later this month and currently sits with the fas- test 3A time by nearly 15 sec- onds. “They’re much faster at the beginning of this year than last year, much faster,” Hurn said, noting the foursome set the meet record at IATC indoor in March. That singular relay, the ver- satility of all four runners, and an entire roster of talented

Junior Laurel Mizerak (left) qualified for the 2023 state meet in three events - the 400 meters, sprint medley relay, and 4x400 relay.

runners, throwers, and jumpers all have Hurn excited about the possibilities for her girls’ track and field team this spring. A year ago, the Tigers took 11 events to the state meet and the potential is there for even more this spring. “We all have excitement with how last season ended and we want to be even better (in 2024),” Hurn said. “From what we’ve seen at practice and the limited amount of indoor oppor- tunities, we’re so much further ahead than we were last year.”

SPRING 2024 | GAME ON 15 season on the team. So, yeah, the potential is most certainly there. Hurn says the key for her lanky runner is to mentally be- lieve she can compete with the other top runners from across Feddersen, a junior, not only anchors the best 4x800 in 3A, but she has opportunities to leave her mark in other events. She was the bronze medalist in the open 800 in 2023, she an- chored the 4x400 to fifth at state, and she’s pushed the one-minute barrier in the open 400. And this is only her second

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