By Ryan Murken
Your Prep Sports
DES MOINES – Most athletes wouldn’t want to remember a performance like the one Bailey Nock had in the Drake Relays’ 3,000 last season.
In order to make sure she never replicates her 21st place showing from a year ago, Nock won’t let herself forget it.
“Ever since that race that has been my motivation,” Nock said. “After that race I never want to feel that way again. Losing I get really down on myself but that feeling of just completely blowing it I used that as motivation.”
On Thursday at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, Nock got her redemption.
A year after finishing 21st in the Drake Relays 3,000, Nock finished third in a career-best time of 10:00.13.
Mid-Prairie junior Anna Hostetler won the title in 9:51.08 and her sister Marie Hostetler was second in 9:56.78.
Nock was third, her best finish in three showings at the Drake Relays 3,000, more than eight seconds in front of Ellie Friesen of Crestwood (10:08.66).
Teammate Gabby Skopec placed eighth in 10:26.08.
“Bailey was .7 of a second off Jenni Frudden’s school record that has stood for 17 years,” West High coach Mike Parker said. “Bailey was 19 seconds ahead of the next 4A girl, and Gabby was fourth in 4A. I know everybody loves the Drake Relays and we do too but in our head everything is about the team and the state championship. So we look at first in 4A and fourth in 4A and we are looking forward to moving that ahead in a few weeks.”
Last season Nock placed 21st out of 21 competitors in the 3,000 in a time of 10:49.43.
What went wrong in Nock’s second showing in the Drake Relays 3,000?
“Everything that could go wrong went wrong,” Nock said. “Instead of seeing that and getting over it I just saw where I was and I completely got down on myself. It was a very good learning experience.”
Nock showed on Thursday how much she had learned from those mistakes.
Her time of 10:00.13 took 22 seconds off her previous career best and ranks second all-time at West High.
“I definitely want to get the school record, that is a huge goal of mine,” Nock said. “Going into it I knew the school record and I was completely locked into the race and my positioning and then with a lap to go my coach yelled out that I was close to the record. I was .7 tenths off so I was frustrated that I didn’t pay attention to my position and my time but I wanted a pr and I got it.”
Valerie Welch and Kitra Bell each logged top-five finish in the long jump on Thursday.
The defending Drake Relays champion, Welch finished fourth with a mark of 17-11 ½ while Bell was fifth with a jump of 17-3.
Council Bluffs Abraham Lincoln sophomore Darby Thomas won the title with a leap of 18-4.