There is something special about Strafford and hurdles.
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“We are starting a hurdling tradition at Strafford,” said Blake Alexander.
In 2011 Dylan Barnum swept both the 110M and 300M hurdles, with his 110M time of 14.32 being the second fastest in Class 2 state history.
On Saturday Alexander continued that legacy becoming the second Indian in the last three years to sweep both hurdle events.
“It feels awesome,” said Alexander. “I worked really hard this spring; I finally got my times down to where I wanted them. I’m so excited.”
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Alexander started his work on Friday, when he won both preliminary events by more than a second to set the tone for Saturday’s final.
“I wanted to make a statement that I’m back, healthy this year, and ready to compete, and that it was going to take a lot to beat me,” said Alexander.
Alexander did just that. His time of 14.27 in 110M prelims topped the mark set by his predecessor Barnum.
In the finals, as he has done all year, Alexander rolled, posting a 14.31 in the 110M and a 38.75 in the 300M to remain unbeaten on the year. His 300M time is the third fastest in Class 2 history.
“The drive to be great really propelled me,” said Alexander. “I knew I was a decent hurdler, but I really wanted to be a great hurdler. My coach talked to me about being successful and said we could do it, so we did it.”
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Blake Alexander’s 2013 season will go down as one of the most dominant track campaigns in the history of the Ozarks. Next year, Alexander will take his talents to William Jewell College, a Division Two university in Liberty, Missouri, just north of Kansas City.
Although the heights of the hurdles will change a bit, Alexander’s state times would make him the top hurdler at William Jewell had he been enrolled this year. His times would have also put him in contention to qualify for the NCAA D-2 Nationals.
But for now, Alexander is just enjoying the ending of his career in maroon and white.
“It’s been awesome; I’ve had some really great teammates come along,” said Alexander. “I can’t think my coaches enough for pushing me to my limits and my family for supporting me. Overall it was just an awesome year and an awesome career at Strafford.”