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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Glover wins 3A state title in 400 hurdles

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Spencer senior Taylor Glover comes over the final hurdle and sprints to a Class 3A girls state championship in the 400 hurdles Friday afternoon, May 17, at Drake Stadium in Des Moines. Glover won the race in 1:04.06, defeating Carlisle's Kaleigh Haus by over a second.
(Photos by Zach Jevne) [Order this photo]
Spencer senior is 3A's best in first year of running hurdles

Hard work and confidence paid off in a state championship for Taylor Glover Friday afternoon. The Spencer senior, who is no stranger to placing at the state meet, won the Class 3A Girls 400-meter hurdles for her first state title.

"My ultimate goal was to win it, and it feels so amazing to have accomplished it," Glover said following the race, which she won by over a second. "I just feel amazing right now because I knew I could do it but it's the fact you have to go do it. I was so nervous before the race I almost got sick and I usually am never that bad. I just told myself not to psych myself out and just go out there and run, and that's what I did and it all worked out."

To make this accomplishment even more impressive, not only does Glover's win make her the first Spencer individual state track champion since Kasey McDaniels in 2005, it's also the first year she's ever ran hurdles events in her career.

She took to the hurdling events like a natural, winning conference, districts and placing fifth at the Drake Relays in the 400 hurdles. Glover also has been a key addition to the Spencer girls' shuttle hurdle team, which qualified for Saturday's final with the second-fastest time in 3A.

It may have looked natural this spring, but it was Glover's hard work that made it look so easy. Extra work in the off-season, mixed in with her other two sports paid off.

"Coach (Al) Pierce mentioned (running hurdles) after last year's track season, and with volleyball and basketball, it almost seemed impossible," Glover said. "But Ali Meister and I would go in at 6 a.m. to do hurdle drills twice a week through the fall and all winter. That kind of got the awkwardness of doing the hurdles out of the way. If I hadn't done that, I wouldn't be here right now."

Pierce added, "We made a plan last year. Her dream was to win a state title, and while she did very well in the sprint events last year (4th in open 400), all those girls were returning. So we looked at the 400 hurdles. We spent a lot of time doing muscle memory training - just doing hurdling drills in the off-season. I could always count on Taylor and Ali to be there in the mornings, working, getting the hurdle technique down. And if you look now, she's a very stylish hurdler for only doing it a year."

Glover run away from the competition down the straight-away, defeating runner-up Kaleigh Haus of Carlisle by over a second.

Glover already had finished sixth in the open 400 on Thursday and her anchor leg of the 4x400 relay put Spencer into the finals with an eighth place finish in prelims, in the day's final event. She'll run the shuttle hurdle relay with Meister, Kelli Kramer (who was also in the 400 hurdles Friday and finished 14th) and Karis Rhode.

Glover will run at Minnesota State University-Mankato next year.

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