Current KoMet is future Gopher
K-M senior tries to repeat before heading to U of M
By Marc Lunde
With nearly flawless technique and a yell that was probably heard throughout St. Paul, Micah Hegerle released a discus toss at the state track meet at Hamline University last spring.
The throw of 173 feet, 8 inches was good enough to give Hegerle blue lace around his neck and a gold to show off. The toss was over 4 feet better than that of the second-place thrower.
"It was really sweet because I didn’t really expect it," Hegerle said of his championship. "The year before that I took second."
It wasn’t supposed to happen that way, but neither was what happened the year before. Neither year was Hegerle ranked to do as well as he did.
But now, the bulls’-eye is squarely on his back.
"I think pressure can push me to get better," Hegerle said.
There are two throwers in the area who are looking to apply that pressure. Kingsland’s Aaron Thauwald (third at state at 154 feet, 5 inches) and Byron’s Tony Sigrist (sixth at 150 feet, 2 inches) both have state medals and are looking to improve their marks from last season.
But the seniors don’t view each other as competition. It is camaraderie that drives these three, not rivalry.
"If any one of us won," Hegerle said, "we’d be happy for each other. As long as we keep pushing each other."
They don’t care who wins as long as they finish 1-2-3, he said.
Chasing Karl Erickson
You wouldn’t think a Class A senior in 2008 would know much about Class AA track from 2000.
Karl Erickson was a 2000 Rochester Century graduate who won shot and discus as a junior and senior. He holds the state record for discus with an absurd toss of 201 feet, 7 inches.
Erickson’s performances in the throwing circle are idolized by Hegerle.
"I’m chasing the state record for discus," Hegerle said. "I should be able to (get it) with strength training and my coach."
Dan Eickhoff is just the coach to help out. Eickhoff is retired now but used to coach Erickson at Century nearly a decade ago.
Hegerle recently accepted a partial scholarship to throw at the University of Minnesota.
"I’m really excited," Hegerle said. "That’s where Karl Erickson went and he had some success there."
It might be looking too far ahead, but Hegerle also hopes to follow Erickson in throwing after college.