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Collins sets school record with 2nd-place jump

Collins sets school record with 2nd-place jump
Press photo by John Burbridge
Charles City freshman Ian Collins clears 6-6 matching his personal-best during the Class 3A boys high jump. Collins set a school record with a 6-7 clear while placing second in the event.

By John Burbridge

DES MOINES — If there is going to be a tiebreaker in the high jump, shouldn’t it go to the shortest competitor?

After all, they need to jump higher even when the bar is set at the same height.

In the waning moments of the Class 3A high jump Thursday morning during the State Track and Field Championships, the bar was set at 6 feet, 9 inches and there were four competitors left.

Charles City freshman Ian Collins was one of them.

All four had three attempts at the mark; all four went down swinging.

Collins, the lone freshman among the four and the only one under 6 feet tall, may have been the closest to clearing the mark on his third attempt. You got the feeling if the event had an overtime format which granted one or two more attempts, Collins may have been the favorite.

But using the amount of previous misses as the tiebreaker, Collins finished second to Landon Kooiker of Fairfield.

Sam Beatty of Mount Pleasant and Waw Gach of Denison-Schleswig placed third and fourth, respectively.

“My first jump, I started out too slow,” Collins said while relating the sequence of his final attempts. “My second jump, my knee buckled because I approached the bar too fast. My third jump, I jumped too deep into the pit … my timing was a little off.”

With a previous clear of 6 feet, 7 inches, Collins set a Charles City school record while breaking his own previous best of 6-6 he had achieved earlier this season, while tying him with Nate Buss, who originally set the mark in 2010.

“You know, it hasn’t really sunk in yet,” Collins said.

And that’s probably a good thing as Collins had more business to attend to in Des Moines. Later that day, he was due to compete in the 4-by-800 relay finals as well as the 4-by-400 preliminaries on Friday.

Charles City had the distinction of having two high jumpers place in the Top 10, with junior Bradley Andrews placing 10th with a clear of 6-3 — a personal best for him.

“It has been a lot of fun,” said Andrews, an all-conference basketball player who went out for track for the first time since seventh grade.

“It’s a great atmosphere. You get to meet a lot of people, and you have teammates like Ian pushing you to do your best.”