Oliver takes silver in high jump
OMAHA—Gothenburg senior Joslyn Oliver went four-for-four on Saturday.
That’s an outstanding accomplishment for any track and field athlete in Nebraska’s state meet and especially extraordinary for a high jumper who has battled foot injuries throughout her high school career.
Oliver finished second in the Class B high jump Saturday afternoon by clearing 5 feet, 4 inches to earn her fourth state medal in four years of competing in the event at Burke Stadium.
She was sixth as a freshman, fourth as a sophomore and second last year as well.
“I’m sure Joslyn would have liked to have had that gold,” said Swede coach Steve Reeves. “When she cleared 5-4 on her first attempt, we thought she was in pretty good shape but the other girl jumped an inch higher and that’s just the way it goes.”
Oliver was the only Swede girl to score points for Gothenburg.
“She’s had a good, solid career,” the coach said.
The others not only battled exceptional competition on Friday but also had to contend with driving rain.
“The weather definitely played a factor in Friday’s events,” Reeves said.
Senior Abby Ambler faced a slippery runway during the girls long jump finishing with a distance of 15-10.5.
Ambler also ran in the rain during the 300-meter hurdles, finishing seventh in her heat in 49.986 seconds and missing out on the finals.
It wasn’t her best performance of the year in either event, Reeves said, but that shouldn’t take anything away from a strong senior season.
Fellow senior Ali Clark met with some unfortunate circumstances in the pole vault as well.
Reeves said she cleared the bar at opening height of 8-6 but the event official ruled that she didn’t push the pole back after making it across.
“It’s unfortunate but that’s the way it works sometimes,” Reeves said. “These girls worked hard and competed solid all year. They’ve come a long, long way.”
Fillmore Central was the girls Class B state team champion with 56 points. Beatrice finished runner-up with 44 points.
Reeves said filling the shoes of such a strong group of seniors will not be easy.
“But we have to move on to next year,” he said.