Track & Field: Worthington Christian graduate Jake Thompson was eyeing state title

JARROD ULREY
julrey@thisweeknews.com
Worthington Christian graduate Jake Thompson placed fifth in the long jump in the Division II/III state indoor track and field meet March 7 at SPIRE Institute in Geneva before his final outdoor season with the Warriors was canceled because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The way Jake Thompson sees it, he's probably more fortunate than many of the spring sports athletes across Ohio who had their seasons canceled because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The 2020 Worthington Christian graduate got a chance to have one last hurrah at the prep level when he and three of his teammates on the boys track and field team competed in the Division II/III state indoor meet March 7 at SPIRE Institute in Geneva.

"I've been praying to God a lot, reading his word and other things to distract myself, just trying to find some closure to be OK with (the outdoor season being canceled)," Thompson said. "I was lucky enough to have an indoor season. For my senior year, one of the fun things was going to the indoor meet, driving two-and-a-half hours all the way to SPIRE Institute."

At the state indoor meet, Thompson finished fifth in the long jump (20 feet, 9 inches) and ran on the 13th-place 800-meter relay with classmates Montell Edwards, Dillon Fulks and David Rettstatt (1 minute, 34.97 seconds).

Last year, Thompson finished 12th in the long jump (20-11 1/2) in his only outdoor state meet appearance.

He set his personal best (21-8 1/2) during the indoor season.

"He was a state placer in the long jump last year and a state placer this year (during indoor season)," coach Mark Mousa said. "He's just a good, all-around kid and probably was going to be our highest male finisher this year. Jake had a shot to be a state champion and just wanted to compete."

A Powell resident, Thompson put together a strong postseason overall last spring.

At district, he placed second (21-1/2) in the long jump and fourth in the high jump (5-11) and was on the sixth-place 800 relay (1:39.2) and the seventh-place 1,600 relay (3:44.88).

Thompson then placed third in the long jump (20-1 1/2) and seventh in the high jump (5-10) at regional.

With this year's outdoor season being canceled, Thompson has been busy with his job at Scioto Reserve Country Club washing carts, cleaning clubs and greeting members.

"I played a little (golf) with my dad, but I don't play much anymore," he said. "I did indoor track this year and was expecting big things with the outdoor season. I was expecting to break the school record and make a run for the state title. I did a lot of leg training and have been able to squat 50 more pounds than I had been the last few years, just lifting a lot more in my legs."

Thompson also played four seasons with Worthington Christian's football team, doubling as a wide receiver and cornerback. He had 20 receptions for 341 yards and two touchdowns as a junior in 2018 when the Warriors went 6-4 and had 24 catches for 265 yards and four scores and 27.5 tackles and two interceptions last fall when Worthington Christian went 8-3 and reached the Division VI playoffs for the first time.

The Warriors lost to Covington 33-27 in the first round of the Region 24 playoffs.

"Just being with the (football) team in general, it's such a great atmosphere," Thompson said. "It was great the last two seasons having winning seasons and being with coach (Jeff) Hartings, who's a tremendous coach and person. The playoff game against Covington was a great time with all my friends being there."

Thompson has committed to compete in track and field at Taylor University in Upland, Indiana.

The Trojans finished 25th at the NAIA national indoor meet March 7, but their outdoor season was canceled five days later because of the pandemic.

He plans to study biology with an eye on someday attending medical school.

"I've been doing Zoom team meetings and soon I'll be getting workout plans for the summer (from Taylor)," Thompson said. "I'm planning to do the long jump and high jump and I plan to try the triple jump. I'm planning to study biology so it's going to be difficult, but I'm ready."

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