116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
DES MOINES — Ashlyn Keeney just didn’t have it. Then, suddenly, she did.
“I was struggling,” she said. “I wasn’t feeling good.
“A lap or two into the race, I just felt tired. It was like I wasn’t even running a race. People were going by me like crazy.”
With two laps to go, the Iowa City Liberty senior was running 20th in a field of 21 in the Drake Relays girls’ 3,000-meter run Thursday evening at Drake Stadium.
Then, finally, she found her groove.
“With two laps left, I thought if I could pick it up a little, at least I could finish the race,” she said.
“I saw one girl ahead of me and thought, ‘Maybe I can get her.’”
She got one, then another, and another. And so forth.
Keeney ran the fastest final 800 of anybody in the race (2:32.4), closing with a final lap of 69.7 seconds and moving all the way up to eighth place in 10 minutes, 12.09 seconds.
It was well behind pacesetter Paityn Noe of Ballard (9:53.31), but it was enough to provide some satisfaction.
“I’m not happy with my race, but I’m happy with how I finished,” said Keeney, an Iowa State University signee. “I just had the mentality of catching one girl at a time.”
Keeney was the lone area top-eight girls’ finisher on opening day.
Maddie Olson of Sheldon claimed the girls’ high jump championship, clearing 5 feet, 7 inches.
Mount Pleasant’s Jadan Brumbaugh dominated the shot put competition, winning with an effort of 47-7. Brumbaugh had the six best throws of the day.
Drake Relays: Thursday’s Girls Results
High jump — 1. Maddie Olson (Sheldon), 5-7; 2. Taylor Jochum (Sioux City Heelan), 5-7; 3. (tie) Keely Collins (Charles City) and Molly Zylstra (Unity Christian), 5-4; 5. Elizabeth Chambers (Northeast), 5-4; 6. Addison Smith (Lawton-Bronson), 5-4; 7. Carlee Rochford (New Hampton), 5-4; 8. Jaidyn Sellers (Panorama), 5-4.
Shot put — 1. Jadan Brumbaugh (Mount Pleasant), 47-7; 2. Sydney Eggena (Denver), 42-1 3/4; 3. Katelyn Lappe (Bondurant-Farrar), 41-3 1/4; 4. Faith DeRonde (Oskaloosa), 40-6 1/4; 5. Emily Baker (Bedford), 39-11 1/2; 6. Kenzie Schon (Carroll Kuemper), 39-4 1/4; 7. Breanna Hackman (Nashua-Plainfield), 39-3; 8. Ashlyn Finarty (Knoxville), 39-1 1/2.
3,000 — 1. Paityn Noe (Ballard), 9:53.31; 2. Addison Dorenkamp (West Des Moines Valley), 9:56.91; 3. Abi Hahn (Des Moines Roosevelt), 10:02.54; 4. Kamryn Ensley (West Des Moines Valley), 10:05.71; 5. Rondi Quass (Ankeny Centennial), 10:09.05; 6. Julia Gehl (Dubuque Hempstead), 10:11.64; 7. Adrienne Buettner-Cable (Des Moines Roosevelt), 10:11.94; 8. Ashlyn Keeney (Iowa City Liberty), 10:12.09.