Darrough soars, track finishes regular season

Brayden Parker

[heading size=”30″]Rock Bridge Invitational: final tune-up meet[/heading] With only a week left before the district championships, senior Luke Darrough could have stayed home. Just as other varsity track and field teams around the area did this weekend Darrough could have taken the day off from competition and rested before the upcoming postseason. Already sitting a top the Bruins’ track district in his primary event, the pole vault, attending the home meet, the Rock Bridge Invitational, could have been nothing more than a formality.
Yet with the opportunity to compete at hand Darrough took it, and the pole vault, with ease.
“In vaulting, Darrough said, ” I was trying to at least get my previous personal best again.”
Following an outstanding performance the Friday at the Belton Relays in which he cleared a new personal record of 15 feet, Darrough already with the top mark in the district took to the runway again at his home stadium. The results were rewarding as he eventually reached a height of 15 feet 7 inches, and even made an attempt at the school record (16 feet 2 inches).
“I was really excited and pretty surprised,” Darrough said. “I’m not sure anyone expected me to clear it.”
Although much of the varsity team, like Darrough, used the Rock Bridge Invitational as preparation, for the upcoming district championship meet for over a hundred members of the Bruins track team it was the final opportunity to compete this season. Many athletes across all the different events used their final time on the track and in the field to also score personal bests.
“For me it was one last chance,” junior thrower Emily Vu said, “to hit the marks I’ve been striving to get this season before it ended.”
With the weather almost ideal for a track meet, warm with a breeze, a majority of the athletes competing in their final meet set new personal bests, a successful ending to the year. And while the regular season ends much of the team is excited to see their teammates continue to compete into the postseason. Some even plan on attending the meets just to watch and cheer on their team.
“I’m excited to go support my team,” Vu said, “and see how they do against other teams.”
And while people are excited to watch, the athletes who make the district roster are excited to put on the show. As the Bruins travel to Jefferson City next Saturday for the Class 4 District 5, the team has reset goals both as a team and as individuals. Darrough has a few such goals, unfinished business according to him that he’ll try to accomplish while also attempting to qualify for the sectional championships.
“I want the school record bad,” Darrough said. “We’ve always talked about it as the ‘untouchable record’, but now it isn’t too far away. Of course, winning [a] state [title] is a big goal as well.”
By Brayden Parker