COVINGTON — A false start last season at the Division II district championships motivated Anna senior Austin Fogt to go farther this season. He’s also driven to go higher. And longer. And faster.
When it comes to track and field there’s no event the Fogt won’t try. A standout in the 110-meter hurdles, Fogt has also scored for the Rockets this season in the high jump and shot put. And two meets ago he took up pole vaulting.
“I haven’t done it since eighth grade,” Fogt said. “I figured I’d do it one meet. I just picked up a pole and got 10-feet.”
“He’s an unbelievable athlete,” said Anna coach Dean Stewart, now in his 33rd season coaching the Rockets. “He high jumps 6-2. He runs the 300 hurdles in 42-seconds flat. He throws the shot 43 feet. We put him in the pole vault and he’s gone 10-6. He’d be a prototypical decathlete in college.”
Fogt’s best event is the 110 hurdles. On Friday he finished second at the Covington Invitational in 15.0, which tied the meet record set back in 1971 and lowered Fogt’s own Anna school record. Covington senior Cade Harshbarger won the 110 hurdles in 14.96.
On Tuesday in a quad meet at Anna, Fogt ran a 15.14 in the 110 hurdles to set a new school record. Eric Large had held the mark with a 15.34 in 2009.
“When I crossed the finish line I looked back and nobody was close to me. That was really cool,” Fogt said. “It was an amazing feeling.”
The goal for Fogt by season’s end is 14.5.
The times Fogt is running now would have put him in the Division II state championship meet last season. His school-record 15.0 would have placed him seventh. For comparison, Versailles senior Josh Steinbrunner won the hurdles championship in 14.54.
“We had said a couple weeks ago when he started really coming on maybe he could go 14.5,” Stewart said. “That’s a lot, but he’s already improved four to five 10ths of a second in just two meets. … Coming into the season he wanted to break 15. I thought he could, but you always wonder because his best was 15.7. He should have a shot getting to state.”
Fogt’s personal best in the pole vault is 10-6. His goal is 13 feet. As for the shot put he’s thrown 42-10.5 feet. His dad, Doug Fogt, holds the school record with a throw of 51 feet.
Entering the Covington Invitational, Fogt had scored a team-high 186 points in meets this season. Sophomore sprinter Bart Bixler is second with 141 points.
Scoring high in as many events plays into Fogt’s plans to compete in the decathlon in college. Athletes compete in the 100, 400, 1,500 running events, the 110 hurdles and long jump, shot put, high jump, discus, pole vault and javelin.
“It’s not about first, second or third. It’s about all the points you can get,” Fogt said. “I think I can do good in that.”
Added Stewart: “I don’t think we’ve ever had anything like that where they could probably do any event here. Pole vault is probably the hardest thing to pick up. I think he trained in any single event he would be good enough to score in an event in any track meet. No, you don’t get kids like that very often.”
Among other highlights from the Covington Invitational:
Anna junior Hannah Shoemaker swept the 100 (16.44) and 300 hurdles (47:53), finished second in the pole vault (9-6) and third in the 200 (26.21).
Houston junior Hollie Voisard swept the 800 and 1,600 runs. She won the 800 in 5:41.87 to edge senior teammate Morgan Ely (5:45.38). Voisard won the 800 in 2:27.35. Ely won the 3,200 in 12:46.31.
Houston’s relay team of Tristin Freisthuler, Ethan Knouff, Blake Jacobs and Parker Cox won the 3,200 relay in 8:21.5. Freisthuler and Knouff also finished second and third in the 1,600 run, while Knouff was also second in the 800.
Senior David Stammen won the discus in 147-03.
Russia’s Anna Fiessinger, Claire Meyer, Jessica York and Becca Seger won the 3,200 relay in 10:20.75.
Covington won both the boys and girls 14-team meets. The boys won with 99 points, while Anna finished third (87), Houston fourth (73), Russia 11th (23) and Fairlawn 12th (22). For the girls, Covington win with 122 points. Anna was third (68), Houston fourth (66), Russia seventh (45) and Fairlawn ninth (27).