What makes Milaca sprinter Crowe click?
Milaca junior Kaija Crowe will be competing in four events at the Class A State Track and Field Meet Friday at Hamline University in St. Paul. She is the first Milaca athlete to qualify in four events for the state meet since David Herbst in 2000.
What makes Kaija click? Let’s find out.
•Question: How does it feel to be headed back to state again? Do you feel last season’s state experience will help?
•Crowe: Feels great, I’m definitely a lot less nervous this year compared to last year. It’s good to kinda know what to expect this year.
•Q: To what do you attribute this year’s success?
•Crowe: Hard work and team work.
•Q: You worked with a track club last winter. How much do you feel that helped prepare you for this year?
•Crowe: The coaches at Fuzion are awesome! Really a fun atmosphere to work in, and with the new technology they had there I was able to better my form in high jump, allowing me to make higher heights like 5-3 at sections.
•Q: You will be competing in four events at state (as you have all season). Does competing in that many events each meet put extra pressure on you? How physically demanding is it.
•Crowe: Really, having four events keeps me busy and keeps my upcoming events off my mind. Otherwise I tend to think too much, and not do as well. By the end of the day it is quite exhausting, but I wouldn’t want to do any less.
•Q: Describe your teammates on the relays.
•Crowe: We are pretty close now, we spend so much time together on and off the track. We have our inside jokes, and funny moments.
•Q: How have your Milaca coaches helped you?
•Crowe: They are always there for us, and have put a lot of effort and pride in the Milaca Track and Field program.
•Q: What is your favorite event? What are your strategies?
•Crowe: High jump is my favorite event, closely tied with the relays.
High jump is mostly technique, takes time to really get good. The relays, especially when you get to these tougher meets, are all about the hand-offs, and having a good bond with your teammates. In the 200 you have to get out of the blocks as fast as possible, it’s a full-out sprint.
•Q: What were your goals for this season?
•Crowe: To make back to state in the 200, and put together some potential state relays.
•Q: What are your goals for the state meet?
•Crowe: Top three for the 200, medal stand for high jump, and at least finals for the relays, hopefully medals.
•Q: What drives you to work so hard to be successful?
•Crowe: You can ask anybody, in everything I do I am very competitive.
•Q: How about your rivalry with Foley senior Claire Gapinski? It appears to be a friendly one.
•Crowe: Ya, actually she’s really nice, and we both probably wouldn’t be running the times we are now if it wasn’t for us pushing each other.
•Q: Counting the conference indoor meet in March, do you recall how many times you ran against her this season and how you fared?
•Crowe: We met nine times counting sections With my win at the section meet, I have won five times and Claire has won four times.
•Q: How did you feel when you crossed the finish line in the 200 at the section meet?
•Crowe: Exhausted, I had been running all day and hadn’t had time to eat more than a box of raisins since 8 a.m.
•Q: What does it feel like to run so fast?
•Crowe: It’s really hard to explain, but it’s fun.