Vanessa Lane's high school basketball coach may have described her best.
"She would run through a wall if you asked her to."
Those were the words of now retired Pequot Lakes coach Jon Dale when talking about Lane's mentality on a basketball court.
Now a college track and field athlete at South Dakota State University, Lane does everything except run through walls.
The junior finished third in the heptathlon (a seven-event competition) during the Summit League Outdoor Championships May 11-13 in Fargo. In the process, she set a new SDSU school record and helped the Jackrabbits place third.
"I was really happy about it," Lane said. "The weather was really nice. You couldn't have asked for better weather. It was definitely challenging. There is such good competition, going against Rose Jackson (North Dakota State) She won the heptathlon there and went to nationals for the indoor and she'll likely be going for outdoors, too. She's very fun to compete against."
Lane and Jackson were once teammates. The summer after Lane's sophomore year of high school she and Jackson competed in Australia together. They ran on the same relays together.
Last week, they competed against each other and Lane held her own.
During the opening day Thursday, Lane finished sixth in the 100-meter hurdles with a 15.06, fourth in the high jump with a 5-3 effort, won the shot put with a heave of 41-3 and placed third in the 200 dash with a time of 25.12 to land her in third place with 3,145 points.
During Day Two, Lane won the 800 in 2:18.55 and the javelin throw with a toss of 129-7. She placed fourth in the long jump with a 17-6 ¼ effort to finish third overall with a school record 5,300.
It was a record she has broke April 14 at the Bryan Clay Invitational in Azusa, Calif. It was a record that stood since 1993 when Tina Baum scored 4,917 points.
"I only broke it by 103 points the first time," said Lane, who is ranked 49th nationally in the heptathlon. "So I was more going into this meet wanting to place in the top three so I could get points for the team. That was my goal in that. However things fell into place, if I could break that record again, then great."
During the final day, Lane was a member of SDSU's 4x100 relay which finished third in 47.27 and the 4x400 relay which also placed third in 3:47.21
"It definitely takes its toll on your body, but there is so much adrenaline running through your body during the conference championships wanting to do as best as I can to help the team out," said Lane. "I just have to block out any soreness from doing all of those events just so I can compete to the best of my ability to help the team.
"I get very tired competing in all of those events during those three days. (Saturday) was just a lot of fun getting to do the 4x1 and the 4x4. I really just wanted to do my best so we could hopefully place in the top three in those as well."
This season, Lane has a number of top times and distances. She's posted the team's seventh fastest 100-meter dash time of 12.47 at the Dakota Relays. She owns the eighth-fastest 200-dash time of 25.12. Her top 400-dash time has her in the top 15. She's got a top 20 800 time.
Her 17-6 ¼ long jump is second on the team and her 5-3 high jump is seventh on the team. While not the largest girl, Lane showed off her strength with a top 20 shot put toss of 41-3.
"High jump is probably the most challenging event for me to get down," said Lane. "That or long jump. They're very challenging for me to put everything together. We have such a wonderful jump coach, who has helped me so much. I was happy with how I performed in the high jump this weekend. I PR'ed with that."
She's third on the team in the javelin throw and has four of the team's top 10 throws in total.
"I really enjoyed the javelin when I first did it my freshmen year and I did it a couple of times," said Lane. "We have a new throwing coach, who came in this year. I think with consistency, practicing once or twice a week was very helpful. Especially, since I became really interested in the multi in the last year or so. It took some time, and I'm still learning of course, but my coach has been really helpful. We've worked really hard to get little things together to make it come together and work."
Lane's first two seasons were not without honors both on the track and in the classroom. She was an All-Summit League Outdoor Track and Field member her freshman and sophomore seasons. She was named to the Summit League Commissioner's List of Academic Excellence, the Distinguished Scholar honor roll and the Academic honor roll.
Of course it takes great athleticism to compete in a seven-event competition, but being smart helps Lane focus on each event.
"You just need to take it event by event," said Lane. "It's definitely challenging having to learn all the different techniques and form for all the different events. But you really just do one event and then move on to the next event. You just focus all of your energy on which event you will be doing next. That's kind of how I've learned to manage it instead of worrying about every single event all at once. I just zone out all the other events and key on the one I'm doing at the time."
Injury free and enjoying good success during her junior year Lane is focused on her final season. It's a bittersweet thought for Lane, who was a five-time Class 1A state meet participant and medalist and a four-time state champion.
"I'm going to be a senior," said Lane, who is studying consumer affairs with a minor in marketing. "I've been running track since I was like 6 years old. My fire is going be even stronger for my last year competing in a sport I've always loved. It's sad to even think about right now."
Israelson honored again
Augustana's Emily Israelson was named to the Women's Golf Coaches' Association All-Central Region team the national organization announced Friday.
The All-Region teams consist of the top 10 players in each region and are selected by the WGCA Division II Awards Committee, with the winner of each regional tournament receiving an automatic selection.
The Vikings finished second at the NCAA Super Region Three Championship last week, earning their ninth trip to the NCAA Division II National Championships in the last 10 seasons. They will compete May 17-20 at Findlay Country Club in Findlay, Ohio.
Israelson, a junior from Staples-Motley High School, is making her second straight appearance on the WGCA All-Central Region Team.
Stone ties for 13th
Savannah Stone shot rounds of 74-78-79 for a three-day 231 to tie for 13th in the NCAA Central Region Championships at Minnehaha Country Club in Sioux Falls.
The senior from Pequot Lakes High School missed advancing to nationals by two shots. She did establish the program's career low scoring average record at 80.09. Her season total of 77.724 is second on the school's list.
She was named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District At-Large Team, as nominated and voted on by members of the College Sports Information Directors of America.
Stone is named to the District VII team, comprised of the three Division II conferences in the NCAA Central Region: Northern Sun, Great American and Mid-American.
To be eligible for the CoSIDA Academic All-District award, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with legitimate athletic credentials, have participated in at least 50 percent of the team's games/events, carry a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.30 in both undergraduate and graduate work, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standing and have completed one calendar year at the institution.
Jacobson falls to teammate
Hamline University's Travis Jacobson threw the shot put 55-7 ¾ during the MIAC Outdoor Championships May 12-13 in St. Paul, which was better than all but one.
That one being senior teammate Chase Duwenhoegger, who also won the conference title in discus. Duwenhoegger won with a 55-10 ½ effort, the best throw by any MIAC athlete this year.
Jacobson, a graduate of Pequot Lakes, also landed a sixth-place finish in the hammer throw with a 167-7 effort.
Hamline finished fifth in the 11-team conference.