In Play with Tom Markowski

A special coach lends valuable advice to track athletes at Lutheran North

Track and Field   | Tom Markowski

A special coach lends valuable advice to track athletes at Lutheran North



Zeeland – Zach Stadnika knew he had to try something different. As a freshman at Macomb Lutheran North he was good in a number of track and field events but Stadnika had to find something that would challenge him, something that would bring out his best.

Fortunately for Stadnika there was a track coach at North who was equipped to provide the direction and the proper teaching Stadnika so desired.

Stadnika competed in four events on Saturday at the Division 2 final at Zeeland Stadium. He won the long jump with a personal-best jump of 22 feet, 4 3/4 inches. He placed in the 110-meter hurdles (14.78), an event he won at this same venue last season. Stadnika placed eighth in the high jump (6-4) and was part of the 800 relay that set a school record with a time of 1:30.88.

Stadnika’s teammate and best friend, Alex Klemm, set the Division 2 record in the high jump with a winning jump of seven feet. His best jump previously was 6 feet, 11 inches.

Lutheran North finished fourth with 33 points. Orcahrd Lake St. Mary's won with 46.

None of the events mentioned above are Stadnika’s best.

At the same time, all of them are. He said the 110 hurdles is his favorite in a track meet such as this.

Stadnika’s main focus, and the event his trains hardest for, is the decathlon.

Thanks to his hard work and drive Stadnika is one of the nation’s best in the decathlon. As a freshman he was third at the 16-and-under AAU Nationals. The next season he placed fourth in the 18-and-under meet. Last summer at the 18-and-under Nationals held in Virginia Beach, Va., he won it. In two weeks he’l