NH’s Byrne 5th in 1,600; Austin 12th in discus
North Harrison’s Tyler Byrne was seeded No. 1 going into the 1,600-meter run Saturday afternoon at the Indiana State Track Finals at Indiana University. The Cougar junior, however, had to battle with a tight pack and finished in the fifth position on the podium.
‘It’s a lot different when you’ve got that many people in a pack around you,’ Byrne said. ‘When everybody is around the same speed and pace, it makes it a lot different.’
The day began with Byrne’s teammate, Allen Austin, in the discus throw. Austin was relaxed and ready to throw, but he had problems on his first two attempts, scratching on both, the second seeing the disc clanging off the steel cage post.
‘I was really relaxed,’ Austin said. ‘Last year, we got here right on time, and I scratched all three then. That happens.’
On his third attempt, Austin got in a good toss of 156 feet, 5 inches, not good enough for the finals but good enough for 12th place.
‘I was way too slow on it,’ said Austin of the throw. ‘I noticed that at the very last I didn’t get the foot down fast enough. The first one was still a little throw. That’s why it went out.’
‘Looking at the finals, our regional was more competition than this,’ he said. ‘Hopefully, college will be better.’
Floyd Central’s Ryan Lowery had a bad day in both the high jump and his 110-meter high hurdles event. Lowery didn’t arrive at the high jump area till just before the competition was to begin. With little preparation time, Lowery cleared 6 feet, 2 inches but missed the next height of 6-4. Lowery also ran in the 110-meter high hurdles (14.83 seconds) but a back problem kept him out of contention.
‘Our bus was kind of late,’ Lowery said. ‘I didn’t have much time to get ready. I didn’t even get to find my steps. I made 6-2, attempted 6-4 and felt my back say ‘No.’ So, I scratched out. I waited for the 110’s and didn’t make it. It wasn’t close. I was hoping for 14.6 (seconds). I wanted to PR today and didn’t do it. My back wouldn’t let me.’
Minutes later came Byrne in the 1,600 meters. Byrne was in the inner lanes at the start and found himself boxed in through the first three laps. Byrne tried to move to the outside near the end of the third lap but gained only minimal ground. On his backstraight of the final lap, Byrne tried to kick closer to the front. The Cougar junior gained some ground but only enough for fifth in a time of 4:20.30. Byrne came back later to run the 3,200 meters and finished 20th (9:39:10).
‘I was just trying to get out of that pack,’ he said. ‘I knew on the next lap there was going to be a big move made, and I wanted to try to get myself in a position to go with them … I was a little bit far back, and I was already starting to feel my legs a little bit more. I don’t think my kick was as strong.’
Floyd’s Logan Eberle didn’t make the podium in his run of the 400 meters, but he did put himself in the Highlander record book with a time of 49.34 seconds, beating the old record of 49.87.
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