The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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May 7, 2013

The best for last

(Continued)

The Bellevue/Marquette Catholic girls 800 medley team (Anna Ambrosy, Mariah Steines, Rachel Kilburg and Sarah Lampe) shaved two seconds off their conference-best time to win the event.

Meanwhile, Danae Diedrich ran a 12.85 100-meter dash to beat Addison McDanel’s (Camanche) benchmark. Fellow Rebel Tierra Hildebrandt’s second-place time also would have set the mark at 12.97.

”We both do the same workouts, always forcing each other to do our best. We’re constantly pushing each other,” Diedrich said on how both Northeast girls have trained. “(The time) makes me more confident because I know I have a better chance to qualify (for state).”

Of all the events, though, the boys 400-meter dash drew the most cheers. Harksen already owned the top time in the conference this season at 51.35.

By the time he crossed the finish line, teammates swarmed him and playfully jeered, “It’s about time.” The clock read 49.76 — a new personal best and the sixth fastest time in Iowa.

”Last year I broke 49. I wanted it to come the beginning of this year, but I was a little behind in getting it,” Harksen said. “(My teammates) were all just joking around because I couldn’t break 49 for a long time.”

He added that throughout the season he’s felt “down” about not meeting that goal. Now, Harksen hopes to carry momentum into this week’s district meet and perhaps shave more time off his run.

He credited the weather as a reason why new benchmarks came with the day.

”A lot of times we’ve been running in bad weather,” Harksen said. This meet was originally scheduled for Thursday night but was postponed with rain and cold weather in the forecast. “Now we get an awesome night and it makes for good running.”

The meet also coincided with another first: Mark (boys) and Brenda Metzger (girls) never had won coach of the year awards simultaneously.

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