As postseason starts, Matzke striding in right direction


DE PERE (WLUK) -- Grace Matzke has ran in the state track and field meet her first two years at De Pere, but the junior might be in store for more this spring.

Matzke competed in the 400-meter dash and a relay as a freshman and sophomore, but after her performance Tuesday in the Fox River Classic Conference track and field meet, where she won three events, Matzke has set her goals higher.

For the second year in a row Matzke won the 100, 200 and 400-meter runs at the FRCC meet and in the process set a school record in the 400 (57.48; 3rd best time in the state this year).

"I think it's been a pretty good year," said a humble Matzke.

It'll be better, if she can get to state in multiple individual events. Is that possible?

"That's kind of her hope," De Pere coach James Boyd said. "I'm sure it's our hope as well. Not to put pressure on her she'll take it one meet at a time. She has to ge through regionals. Regionals is very difficult, probably one of the best in the state that we go to in Kimberly. Yeah, we're hoping."

"I think for this year we're thinking a couple opens and a relay," Matzke said. "I'm really hoping for some combination to go."

If Matzke succeeds in her goal, look no further than her training that gets her there. In addition to the 100, 200 and 400, Matzke has competed in the 300 hurdles and that is done by design to strengthen her in the other events.

"Now that she's in the 300 hurdles, it strengthens her for the 400, the 400 for the 300s and the sheer speed in the 100 for all of them," Boyd said. "She's actually a girl we probably could've gone anywhere from 100 to 800, so her range is pretty wide."

Maztke said her confidence in the 400 is similar to last season, but the 100 is where her confidence has grown.

"I'd say in the 400 I'm probably the same," she said. "I think in the 100 I'm more confident, so hopefully it goes well."

Matzke could also could also compete in a relay next week at regionals (Monday) and sectionals (May 25). Matzke, basically, can do what Boyd wants her to do, which is why he isn't sure exactly what the plan is for next week.

"She's gone to state twice in the 400 and in the four by 400, so clearly that's her strength going forward, but I'm not really sure what we'll do," Boyd said. "This is the best year she has run the open 400, so it really gives us a lot of options come next Monday."

Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay

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