DES MOINES — Will DeHaan had subdued expectations going into his junior track season.
“I just wanted to qualify for state in one event,” the Central DeWitt middle distance standout said.
DeHaan finished with much more.
After anchoring the Sabers to gold in the Class 3A distance medley relay Friday, DeHaan returned to Drake Stadium on Saturday with a third-place finish in the 800 and a sixth in the 1,600.
“Going to state and medaling in all three events is a pretty cool feeling,” DeHaan said.
That, coupled with top-eight finishes from Terry Harris in the 100 and 200 and a fourth-place 400 relay, left Central DeWitt 11th in the standings with 30 points. A year ago, the Sabers tallied only one point at state.
DeHaan had not run better than a 2:08 in the open 800 last year. He ran a 1:56 split on the medley relay triumph and followed with a 1:58 in Saturday’s open final.
“I just figured out I’m capable of much more than I thought I was,” DeHaan said. “Every practice I worked 100 percent, and I looked for that competition against my own teammates. That made me better.
“It was all worth it.”
Minutes after his finish in the 1,600, DeHaan was already peeking ahead to next year and a return trip.
“I’m going to train even harder during the offseason than I have in the past,” DeHaan said. “I’m going to train my body to be capable of doing greater and bigger things next year.”
Harris finished with five state medals in his career, four this season.
Even though he wasn’t pleased with his final performances in the 100 (seventh) and 200 (eight), the 4-foot-11 senior walked away content.
“Knowing I worked hard and to go home with four medals, that’s a good feeling you’ve run your best,” Harris said.
West Liberty’s Tanner Iske finished 3A runner-up in the 100 in 11.09 seconds. West Burlington-Notre Dame’s Isaiah Trousil, a 10-time state champion, captured the title in 10.74.
“To see my name up on that board means a lot to me,” Iske said. “It is an amazing sight.”
Iske hung with Trousil for about 80 meters before the Northern Iowa football recruit pulled away at the end.
“This motivates me a lot,” Iske said. “I’ll be practicing a lot over the summer. I want to get to that top level. I’ve got to put in more work than everyone else to achieve that.”
Northeast’s Wyatt Schmidt took bronze in the 800 out of the first of two sections. Schmidt, who never had broken 2 minutes in an open 800, ran 1:57.64.
“I was hoping to get in there and place,” Schmidt said. “To go that far up is awesome.”
Camanche’s David Gonzalez pocketed three medals Saturday. He ran on the Indians’ fourth place 400 relay, fifth place sprint medley relay and was sixth in the 200.
Northeast took sixth in the sprint medley relay.
In the 3A girls 800, Central DeWitt's Julia Campbell was sixth in 2:20.90.