STATE TRACK: High-flying Tiger

DES MOINES – While other high jumpers jogged over to their coaches to get some quick critiques, last bits of advice or extra encouragement, South Hardin’s Sarah Boomgarden stood alone and patiently waited for her next jump.

Asked afterward why she didn’t seek any last bits of counsel – her answer was simple.

“Basically I don’t really have coaches for this,” Boomgarden said of her largely solo act in preparing for the high jump.

“I’m just basically on my own for this one. … I just really have to get my mind set to jump and that’s what I go off of.”

The approach has worked for the sophomore so far as she improved four spots from a year ago to claim runner-up at a height of 5 feet, 4 inches in the Class 2A girls section of the Iowa Co-Ed State Track and Field Championships on Friday.

Two-time Class 1A champion Chaley Rath of Treynor edged out the win rising above 5-5 on her third attempt.

Boomgarden took advantage of “a second chance” to move past the 5-4 barrier, after her shoulder hit the bar on her second jump and knocked the bar down to the incorrect height. While the Tigers sophomore didn’t receive credit for the jump, she also wasn’t penalized and afterward made the most of the extra opportunity.

“You don’t always get a second chance so I had to really take that and use it,” said Boomgarden, who also makes the most out of what she can find to improve as a jumper.

“I’m just kind of going off (of tips from) the internet. My dad tries to be a big supporter and do what he can.”

Though Boomgarden mentioned her dad isn’t a former jumper either, essentially taking her preparation back to the moment she’s alone waiting for her next attempt at the bar.

“I’m pretty much on my own in this one,” she said.


Boomgarden will take her solo act to the track again today as she competes in the finals of both the 100 and 200.