Both Rush City track and field representatives, senior Max Maher and freshman Demario Peterkin, earned medals and a place on the podium at the State Track and Field Championships last week at Hamline University.
Taking third in the pole vault, Maher cleared the bar at 14 feet, while a new Class A record of 15 feet, 6 inches was shared by Grant Krieger of Blake School and Tyler Tappe of Pequot Lakes who finished first and second, respectively.
“Despite the weather Max had a good week of practice leading up to the state meet,” coach Mike Vaughan said. “This was his third trip to the state meet and he was very confident going into the meet. He was mentally and physically prepared. His third place at state at 14’ is a new school record that he has set for the fourth time.”
Vaughan lauded Maher’s work ethic.
“Max Maher is a once in a coach’s career kind of athlete. He works so hard in and out of season. He has mastered his event and has been very successful. His only loss this year in the pole vault is at the state meet to two athletes that set a new class A state meet record. Despite all Max’s success he has always remained humble and a team player. He has done whatever it takes to help the team out and does whatever his coaches ask of him. His example will be truly missed from Rush City Track and Field.”
Peterkin came in fifth in the 400m dash with a time of 50.39, competed in the 200m dash and just missed qualifying for the finals in the 100m dash by .01.
“These three events are extremely physically and mentally demanding,” Vaughan said. “Demario made it to finals in the 400 by running a new school record and reset a school record in the finals. He just missed the finals in the 100 by one place. Demario stayed composed and battled for fifth place in the 400m. He is the fifth fastest 400m runner in the state as a ninth grader. This meet was a great opportunity for Demario. He has gained confidence in his ability throughout the season, and it seems he gained confidence from his participating in the state meet. It will be interesting and fun to see Demario develop even more as an athlete in the years to come.”
Vaughn knows how difficult it is to make it to the state meet, and said he enjoyed coaching Maher and Peterkin this year.
“Overall, I feel blessed to have the opportunity to coach both of these young men at the state meet and throughout their careers.”