A throwback to the past! Last year after this article was posted, Annie went on to win the AA State Championship in the long jump and also posted a second place finish in the triple jump. She went undefeated for the track season in the long jump. She now competes at South Dakota State.
Annie Wendt, Class of 2019 - Rochester Mayo High School
What are all your personal records? What State Meet competitions have you been in, and what were your results?
Long Jump- 18'1.25
Triple Jump- 37'1.5
State 2018 - 6th in the Long Jump, 7th in the Triple Jump.
How did you first get involved with track, and what other sports have you done?
In middle and elementary school each year we had annual track and field days, which I always enjoyed and excelled at them. It wasn't until freshman year when I joined Mayo track and have been loving it ever since. Jumping has always come natural to me, which I partially attribute to figure skating. I've been figure skating since I was 10, but I worked hard throughout the years and will be testing this summer to become a gold medalist. It's year round and being a double sport athlete has helped stabilize me between the two sports.
What is your favorite or most memorable competition you've ever been in?
Last season was full of special memories, but State stuck out as a special one. My brother Zach and I both qualified in the jumps, and having each other jumping at the same time was a special moment. We were both jumping at the same time which was special how we were both able to watch each other and still motivate each other. We've always been close and having the same event to connect to is a special bond.
Who are some people that have been most helpful to you in your athletic career, and how have they helped you?
In my athletic career some of the most helpful people would be my coaches and family. My skating coach told me once to stop looking to compare myself to others but look at my own personal self and look at what I can improve on and set those personal goals. My coaches at track are all so motivating and always able to get me to laugh. I wouldn't be able to do it without my parents who have always encouraged their kids to do things that they were never able to and allowed us the opportunity.
Who might we find cheering for you at competitions (ie, friends, family, classmates, etc)?
At my meets you're always going to find my parents cheering me on by the pits. No matter how small or large the meet one of them always seems to be their cheering me on. My jump coach is always a personal support and has been there through my ups and downs.
What is a challenge, or challenges, you have had to face as an athlete?
As an athlete I have had to overcome starting off later in life in both my sports. This has allowed for me to key into hard work and remember my own personal goals. Being involved in skating and track at the same time has taught me time management skills, but also allowed for me to figure out my own body and not push it past its limits. Last season I twisted my ankle right in the middle of the season and never allowed for it to heal so I had to push past the pain and remember my goals, but also realize the limits that my body does have.
What are your main goals for this track season?
My main goals this season are to have fun while trying to improve my techniques as much as possible. I would love to break 19 feet and have consistent marks on the board. In the triple jump, I want to work on my 1st to 2nd phase to have more flow and learn proper technique.
What are you and your teammates looking forward to the most this year?
I believe most of us just want to have a fun year and take in all the memories while improving and getting faster. To see our hard work paying off is a nice motivation and keeps us all going. The high place finishes are always fun but aren't the main priority and our own personal goals are set to break. Sections gives our relays competition and is always a fun and intense meet.
What was your recruiting process like, and what attracted you to SDSU?
My recruiting process was long and sometimes overwhelming as I looked at schools like any other student. I weighed the pros and cons that came with each and decided on SDSU. My focus when I picked a school was the programs that were offered and what other opportunities were there to help further my education. SDSU offered great research opportunities, clubs, and the school was a great size for me personally. I loved how close knit the track team felt and how they openly shared their beliefs and they shared how they foster those at SDSU. I loved how schooling is a priority and track comes with it but isn't the primary focus all while I get to continue to skate and coach.
Do you have any rituals, routines, or superstitions either on or off the track?
Between events when I don't have much time, I turn to strawberries to boost my energy. Only strawberries seem to have the same effect, but it's my go to. Also, only the green apple Gatorade I sip on in between my jumps when I'm feeling the nerves.
What advice would you give to younger athletes, or athletes just starting out in track?
My advice to younger athletes is if you're passionate about something go for and don't let others tell you that you can't. Put the extra work in and outside of practice and keep goals. Write your goals out and have long and short-term ones to keep you accountable and motivated. Don't let a bad meet determine you and have fun!
Do you have any specific jumping advice or tips that you would like to share?
Mark your steps out and account into those steps your adrenaline at meets. Never look at the board and trust your marks and don't start stressing out if you scratch a jump because there is always more.