NEVADA - Kaylee Schnathorst can be intimidating. She knows it and she accepts it, even if it's not intentional.
If gold medals were handed out for stare-downs and scowls, she would have enough to open up her own depository.
"People say I'm intimidating, but I don't get it," Schnathorst, a Webster City junior, said while chuckling. "I've seen pictures of myself though and thought, 'Wow, no wonder why nobody talks to me.' But I don't mean to; I'm just trying to get into my zone."
DFJ photo by Troy Banning
Webster City junior Kaylee Schnathorst (center) wears the determination on her face as she leads the girls’ 100-meter hurdles at last night’s Class 3A?State Qualifying Meet in Nevada. Schnathorst went on to win the gold in 15.95 seconds and automatically qualify for the state meet in Des Moines next week.
Schnathorst was certainly in her zone - scowl and all - last night, as she won the girls' 100-meter hurdles at a Class 3A State Qualifying Meet to punch her ticket to state next week in Des Moines. The intensity in her eyes dissipated and the celebration started as she leaned across the finish line in a personal-best 15.95 seconds.
"The start and the finish are usually my high points, so I knew I had it," she said.
It was vindication for Schnathorst, who said she's spent the last 12 months obsessing over last spring's near miss in the event.
"Last year I nicked hurdle No. 7 and I fell back and didn't get in, so it's been on my mind all year," she said. "Every single workout has been pushing me to this and I just told myself that if this is what I'm going to do, I'm going to do it right here."
Schnathorst will have friendly company when she hits the blue oval at Drake Stadium, as WCHS freshman Allie Flaws joined the gold rush with wins in the 100- and 200-meter dash.
Flaws - unbeaten in the two sprints this season - clocked impressive times of 12.71 and 26.40 seconds.
"(The races) were good ... I've been focusing on this for a long time," Flaws said after winning the 200. "It's exciting because some of my other teammates are probably going. I'm proud of them, too."
Flaws buried the 100 field right out of the blocks, but she was forced to play catch-up in the 200. She sat in third as the field hit the turn, but down the straightaway she left everyone in the rearview mirror.
"Allie's times were exceptional," WCHS head coach Kristy Manson said. "She wanted those two races pretty bad."
The top two finishers in each event automatically qualified for state. Eight at-large entrants will also be added.
Manson thinks her team has a shot to capture several of the at-large berths.
Schnathorst placed third in the shot put with a heave of 35 feet, 10 inches. Kisston Thomas was third across the line in the 100 in 13.28.
"We'll just have to wait and see," Manson said. "Kaylee's throw should give her a good chance, and Kisston's time is good as well."
WCHS scored 96 points to finish fourth in the team race. Complete team scores were unavailable as of press time.