A Last Look At Morgan Lawler

(Photo provided by Morgan Lawler)

Personal Records:

200m - 28.79
400m - 59.36
800m - 2:15.77
1600m - 5:37.46
5K (xc) - 19:57.40

What other years were you close to making it to the state meet?  I am surprised that you did not qualify for the state meet the year you ran 59.36 in the open 400 meter dash!

Oddly when I ran 2:15.77 in the 800 my junior year at sections, that didn't qualify me for state. I finished 3rd and missed the state qualifying standard by about half a second. My sophomore year I only ran the 4x400 at sections because I had a stress fracture and was recovering from a sprained ankle. My relay team finished 3rd but qualified under the state standard time. I ran in State prelims and we qualified for finals, but the next day I couldn't run and gave up my spot to our alternate. I can still recall the frustration and confusion I felt while I was trying to warm up for the final. However, I've never doubted that I made the decision that was right for my team that day...and truthfully, it was really the only option anyway. Something that made that experience less devastating for me was that our alternate was a very deserving senior and seeing her end her career at the State Meet meant a lot. My teammates were also incredibly supportive and because of them, I still had a great experience at State that year!

Where were you born and what sports did you play before high school?

I was born in New Jersey but moved to Minnesota when I was still a baby. As a kid I played soccer, softball, basketball, and ran track of course.

Tell us about your track & field and cross country coaches.  What did you learn from them?

My track coach was Sara Hatleli and she has always believed in me and pushed me to try new events, for which I am very grateful. She often tells me I'm too hard on myself and always tells me just what I need to hear. She taught me that it's okay to be upset about a race for the minutes following it, but after that it's important to enjoy the atmosphere of the meet and focus on the next race. She cares a lot about the success of her team, as well as the individuals on it, and I'm very grateful for the relationship I've formed with her over the past several years. I'm also thankful to our assistant coach, KJ, who has never failed at calming my nerves or making me laugh before a race.

My cross country coach was Chris Harder. I only ran cross country my senior year but had a wonderful experience, due, in part, to his coaching. Harder is knowledgeable and passionate about running and his enthusiasm makes practice more fun. He stresses the importance of hard work, having goals, and believing in you. Harder taught me that whether a race goes good or bad it's important to reflect on it because something can always be better. I have a great amount of respect for Harder and thank him for all he's taught me about running and life. Fun fact: I'm fairly certain Harder can recite the times of every kid he's ever coached at every meet they ever ran at...seriously...it's crazy.