Jade Reicks has enjoyed running since he was 6 years old.
The senior hasn’t stopped running since then, and it all paid of with his best day ever in track and field with one state championship in the 300-meter intermediate hurdles, runner-up in the 200 dash and a fourth-place medal in the 100 dash.
“I’m very satisfied with how today went,” Reicks said after finishing his final event, the 200. “I’ve been dreaming of moments like this ever since I was 6 years old when I fell in love with running. I was running on my hill every single day behind my house and always having big goals for myself.”
Reicks said he is proud that he brought home a state title for his community, friends and family.
St. Peter senior Ben Bode earned his fifth straight wheelchair shot put and discus top-three finishes by placing second in the shot and third in the discus.
The St. Peter 4x800 relay team of junior Amelia Carlson, junior Izzy Lind, eighth-grader Hadley Stuehrenberg and sophomore Maddie More earned a ninth-place medal with a strong anchor leg by More.
More also placed 13th out of 17 runners in the 1,600 run.
Reicks beat the former school record held by his idol, Mohamed “Fargo” Isaack (38.21), in the preliminaries Friday (38.69), and he topped it in the finals (38.54).
“He was my friend and mentor when I was growing up, and he was on my 4x400 relay, too,” said Reicks who made state for the third time in the 300 hurdles. “He’s a big part of who I am today as well as my coaches. I can thank every single one of them. I’m super grateful for growing up where I was and being coached and trained by the best people.”
Last year in the 300 hurdles, Reicks hit the final hurdle, fell and dropped from first or second to ninth.
“Last year really haunted me all year,” Reicks said. “It was obviously a heartbreaker when you’re closing in on first. It motivated me for this year. It helped me look in a mirror and try to find out what kind of person I was going to become. It drove me to work harder in the summer and the off season and got me to where I am today. Every little thing, all of the ups and downs, contributed to where I am today.”
Reicks shows his intensity on his face when he runs.
“I’m one of the most competitive people out here, and I really don’t like to lose,” Reicks said. “I’ll do whatever it takes not to lose.”
In the 100 finals, Reicks finished in 11.21 into the wind. He ran a career-best 11.15 in the prelims. “I was happy with my race. My start could have been better.”
In the 200, Reicks edged out rival Marlon Wiley of Jordan by 0.15 seconds for the first time in 22.45. Reicks finished in 22.35 in the prelims. “It’s kind of a closer thing beating him for the first time head-to-head,” Reicks said. “I do well under pressure, and I expect to continue to do well in the future.”
Reicks will be running track for the University of Minnesota Gophers. He will run the 400 hurdles, plus another event or two such as the 4x400 relay, the 200 or wherever he can help the team. “I’m excited to take the next step,” Reicks said.
Bode threw 39 feet even in the discus finals, which was just 4 inches less than his seed distance of 38-04 and his school record of 39-9. In the wheelchair shot, Bode threw his season best 18-3.7 that topped his seed distance of 18-0.25. His career best is 19.
“I thought I did pretty good,” Bode said. “It’s state, so I’m a little nervous. Today I was pretty calm, so I had better results. I just wanted to throw a 39 today.”
Bode had more competition this year with four in the shot put and five in the discus. “It’s definitely tougher competition,” Bode said. “Danny Lilya of Moose Lake (who threw 20-07.50 in the shot) was tough to beat. That was the kid that I got second to.”
Asked about his career overall, Bode said, “It’s been fun. It’s pretty emotional after the meet. I just wanted to give Mr. Boe (throwing coach Erick Boe) one last hurrah for everything. He said don’t get so worked up about it. I didn’t tense up as much. All you got to do is throw.”
Bode is continuing his education at Southwest State University in Marshall to study broadcasting and hopefully to get into sports.
The St. Peter 4x800 team finished in 9:50.65 which was just 0.55 of a second slower than the seed time of 9:50.10, which is a school record. More had a blistering anchor leg of 2:17.78 in which she passed three runners to clinch a medal. Carlson led off with a 2:28.92 split in which she passed two. Lind had a 2:35.72 split, and Stuehrenberg ran a 2:28.23 split.
“The relay went good,” More said. “We got about the same time as section. Without Yana (Burgess who was replaced by Lind at state), we ran pretty good. That’s what we were seeded (ninth). We all medaled, which is nice.”
More won two other medals last year in the the 800 and the 1,600.
“The mile was pretty hard because there’s a lot of fast girls,” More said of Saturday’s 1,600. “A lot of them had fresh legs, and I was pretty tired after the 4x8, so it was kind of difficult to get out. But I like the mile.”
More started in the back. “I kind of got boxed in on the corners, so on the straightaways, I tried to work my way around people. Next year I’d probably get out faster and somehow get more of a rest.”
It’s difficult running in the high 80s to low 90s, but More said she “drank a lot of water, so it’s been easier. But once you’re done, you’re like dizzy.”
More ran a 5:20.61 in the 1,600 finals, besting her seed time of 5:21.50.
All but Burgess, who is a senior, can return to the relay next year.