Boys track state finals: LC’s Gelen Robinson takes home pair of seconds
By Brian Peloza Post-Tribune correspondent May 31, 2013 10:10PM
Left to right, Chesterton's Nick Barango, Tyler Vore and Kevin Kenney celebrate their finish in the 3200 meter relay during the IHSAA state finals in Bloomington Friday May 31, 2013. | Aaron P. Bernstein~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: July 2, 2013 8:13AM
BLOOMINGTON — Lake Central junior Gelen Robinson nearly used his anger from not winning the discus event to a surprising win in the shot put at the IHSAA boys track and field state finals.
Robinson will have to settle for a pair of second-place finishes and a renewed focus toward bettering those marks next season.
In the discus Robinson finished runner-up with a throw of 187-feet-5, while Floyd Central’s Codie Hamsley won the event with a mark of 194-feet. Robinson entered hoping to throw over 200-feet.
“I don’t think I did too good and it was an off day for me,” Robinson said, “but it is what it is and there’s nothing I can do about it now except come back next year and do it better. You can’t blame it on the wind, it was just an overall off day for me.”
Robinson was seeded fifth in the shot put, but finished second with a throw of 59-6½, while Decatur Central’s Lukayus McNeil won the event with a toss of 61-6.
“I was happy with that, but it wasn’t my main focus,” Robinson said.
Not quite as expected, but still satisfying: Merrillville senior Austin Jamerson had to temper his expectations for the state finals due to a torn tendon in his heel.
The all-around athlete still left with a top-9 finish and medal, albeit in a surprising event — the 110-meter hurdles.
Jamerson entered with the 23rd-fastest seed, but ran a 14.42 seconds for the fastest time in the prelims, before finishing eighth in the finals in 14.70.
“The finals was icing on the cake because I knew I already had a medal,” Jamerson said.
In the high jump he finished 15th after clearing 6-foot-2. He then skipped the ensuing heights until the 6-6 mark, as he knew his injury would only allow so many attempts.
“I took a gamble and tried to go straight to 6-6 but it didn’t work out for me,” Jamerson said.
His best was almost good enough: Hobart senior Nicholas Stack wanted to win a state championship, and while he cleared a personal-best height of 15-9, it only got him fourth place.
“I’m glad I made a PR, but not glad that I didn’t win,” Stack said. “Definitely the PR helps with this loss but fourth is the third loser as they say. This was basically my only loss all year.”
Nicholas’ uncle, Jimm, was a state champion in the pole vault, ironically by clearing 15-9; and his father Andy was a two-time state runner-up in the event.
3,200 relay had plenty of local flavor: Chesterton and Crown Point were 1-2 at the halfway point of the 3,200 meter relay race, before Fort Wayne Carroll pulled away for the win in 7:40.14.
Still, Chesterton finished second in 7:43 and Crown Point was a close third in 7:44, with both programs setting school records. Portage was eighth in 7:57.
Team standings: Hamilton Southeastern won the team championship with 65 points, while Lafayette Jeff was second with 49. Crown Point finished 12th with 17 points, and was followed by West Side and Lake Central (16 points apiece), and Chesterton (15).