Senior Matt Myers and junior Isaac Huntington represented the Hastings Raiders at the Class AA state track and field meet June 7-8 at Hamline University. Myers competed on Friday, May 7, in the boys' pole vault after winning the event at the Section 1AA while Huntington ran the 400-meter dash preliminaries that day and qualified for the finals on Saturday with a time of 50.52 seconds.
Myers tied for 14th with a vault of 13 feet. The state champion was Alec Wittman of East Ridge who defended his 2018 title with a mark of 15 feet. On Saturday, Huntington took eighth in the 400 with a time of 50 seconds flat. After his race, Huntington said his goal was to just enjoy state.
"It feels good, I mean going (to state) two years in a row, I didn't do as well as I did in sections but stuff happens," he said. "I wanted to enjoy what I had and take it, see what happens."
Huntington had set a personal record of 49.64 seconds in the Section 1AA meet at Lakeville South on Saturday, June 1.
After the Metro East Conference meet, Myers said he had a bit of a crisis of confidence that required a reset heading into the section meet.
"So the week prior I was at quite a low after our conference meet and to recover from that I knew that I just needed to change my mindset and understand that I needed to relax," he said. "That day at practice we were doing a mock meet and on my first try I cleared a height which I had never cleared before which was 13 feet. That got my confidence up, I knew I could go high."
"Then at sections I knew that I had the No. 3 seed, but I was not concerned, I just had to control what I could control, which was me," Myers said. "I took it one step at a time and ended up at the top of the podium at the end of the day."
Heading into the state meet, Myers said that his goal was to make all-state, but that did not end up happening. Outside of that, he wanted to have fun.
"I have found that is the best way for me to stay under control, to focus on the fun of the sport," he said.
The state meet was Myers' last athletic event as a Raider and he reflected on the past year.
"As a whole my senior year was my favorite year I spent in high school," he said. "I had the opportunity to make great connections with old and new friends and also the opportunity to realize my ability as an athlete, participating in two state tournaments in one year."
Myers also qualified for the state wrestling individual tournament at 120 pounds.