Photo by Jeff Yoder
Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – As the cutoff date for Drake Relays qualification gets closer and closer many athletes around the state spend plenty of time sweating out the final few weeks with the hopes to get a chance to compete in the prestigious prep portion of the annual event.
West High senior Katie Severt won’t be among those athletes checking the Drake Relays qualifying list.
Severt has already locked up her spot in the Drake Relays long jump field, meeting the 2019 Blue Standard for automatic qualification in her first outdoor meet of the season.
“I struggled a little bit during the indoor but we finally got to practice outside and that helped a lot,” Severt said. “I am just glad that my coaches have been able to help me get through it.”
Severt uncorked a jump of 17-10 in her first competition last month at the Women of Troy Relays at West High.
That jump exceeded the 17-8 Blue Standard for 2019 and is currently tied for the third best mark in the state this spring.
“I was super excited,” Severt said. “I was not expecting to get the Blue Oval standard this early on so I am super pumped.”
The early long jump success proved to be a springboard for Severt to a strong start to her senior season.
Severt was one of two West High athletes to win four events on Saturday at the inaugural Eastern Iowa Track and Field Festival.
Along with another title in the long jump, Severt won the 100 in a season-best time of 12.91 and was a member of the winning 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams.
“Practicing and trusting my training is what I try to do,” Severt said. “I trust my coaches and I have a lot of great teammates and that definitely helps.”
The West High 4x100 squad of Severt, Matayia Tellis, Amy Liao and Peyton Steva won on Saturday with a season-best time of 50.34.
Severt has expectations for the 4x100 relay team that currently owns the fifth best time in Class 4A this season.
“I love running with those girls and the 100 is one of my favorites,” Severt said. “I am really excited about what we can do in the 4x100.”
While Severt has certainly taken a big step this early in her senior season long-time West High coach Mike Parker believes there is still plenty of growth for Severt to make especially in the long jump.
“Her success is from a lot of work she has put in,” Parker said. “There are still things that she can improve on and once she changes a few technique things there is even another level for her to reach.”
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