The 104th edition of the Drake Relays start Thursday in Des Moines. It's a chance for the top high school athletes in Iowa, regardless of school size, compete against each other in one of the biggest meets in the country.
That is, if the weather doesn't get in the way.
The cool, wet weather has kept the track and field teams indoors for much of the spring. At MOC-Floyd Valley in Orange City, the track team was again forced inside by the rain and snow. The Dutch have only competed in five outdoor meets.
The state meet is less than a month away and the Dutch don't feel like they can "hit their stride", until the weather gets better.
"Of anything that you can do inside, practicing inside is the worst thing," senior Trey Achterhoff said. "It's harder on your legs, running in hallways and I don't even know what we're going to do today. It's frustrating not to be out on the track."
"Our coaches are doing their best to give us workouts, but nothing can really replace a track meet," senior Jade Hanson added. "So, I'd say we're struggling in that aspect, just the experience of dropping times, which is good for our athletes, especially the young ones. I think we'll be OK when we get there. We have a strong team."
The defending Drake Relays champion in the high jump is Dutch junior Alexis Conaway, who is also the reigning state player of the year in volleyball, and one of the top basketball players in Iowa.
We'll have more with Conaway, Tuesday night at six.
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