COLUMBUS — Most athletes who fall tenths of a second short of an individual state championship find it hard to smile.
That wasn’t the case Saturday for St. Edward’s Anthony Young and Steele Wasik. The Medina County residents enjoyed an even-better feeling: helping the Eagles to their second straight Division I state title.
The tandem did just that, having a hand in 32 of St. Edward’s 62 points. The Eagles took the team crown over Pickerington North (47).
“It feels great,” said Wasik, a Medina resident. “It was a little more stressful and closer than the last one, but still the same. It’s more special this year because everyone is a senior and it’s kind of like a last hoorah for us, so we really enjoyed it.”
Young and Wasik participated in a pair of individual events, along with running legs of on the 4×400-meter relay that was sixth in 3:20.51. By that time, the team title was mathematically wrapped up.
It was almost like a victory lap for Young, who came up just short of winning his third consecutive 200 dash title earlier in the night.
“We’re just strong all around the board … in every aspect,” the Liverpool Township resident said. “It was a great way to end my career because even though I get second in the 200, I was a little disappointed, but silver is still good.
“I couldn’t have done this by myself. Track is a team sport as well as an individual sport and we scored over 60 points, almost 20 more than last year. That’s God’s blessing right there.”
Young, who placed fourth in the 100 (10.91), lost a thrilling 200 final to Lincoln senior Riak Reese, who beat Young by 0.28 seconds as he finished in 21.81.
While the Indiana recruit wanted to be among a handful of greats in Ohio history to win three titles in a single event, he was content with the finish.
“I just really felt tight and wasn’t doing my best,” Young said. “I got out of the curve first and just tried to see what I could do with that. But I’m so blessed and happy with second.
“I would’ve loved the three-peat, but it wasn’t God’s plan and I’m just happy with what I was able to do.”
Wasik was second in both of his individual events. The first, the 110 hurdles, came down to hundredths of a second.
The lanky junior appeared to have the edge on Pickerington North’s Desmond Palmer heading into the final hurdle before Wasik nicked the obstacle with his left knee and lost by 0.03.
“It happened four hours ago and I’ve already replayed it thousands of times in my head,” said Wasik, who finished in 14.06. “It was a great race up until the last hurdle. I clipped it really bad with my knee, lost my balance and he was able to pass me in the short distance between the last hurdle and the finish.”
Palmer bettered Wasik again in the 300 hurdles. Palmer, a senior, clocked 36.31, while Wasik recorded 36.91.
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