“I was really worried I was going to have to hit 6-6 again to have a chance,” Schwartz said. “I just figured someone was also going to make it over.”
Schwartz watched on as, one by one, the multitude of other 3A qualifiers failed to clear the bar. Schwartz kept counting down the competitors until only one last jumper remained.
When that final challenger missed his last try at 6-4, Schwartz suddenly realized he had achieved something he hadn’t even considered until that very moment. The Fairfield senior had won a state title and wasn’t even done yet at Drake Stadium.
“It wasn’t really that much different to try and make it at 6-6. I’ve had meets before where I’ve won and still tried to beat my own height,” Schwartz said. “Once I made it over at 6-6 again, I could have just tried for 6-7.”
Doing that would have given Schwartz a new school record in the process. But with the state title and his own school record already matched on the grand state of the State Track and Field Meet, Schwartz figured he’d send his career off in truly grand style.
“I figured why not go for 6-8,” Schwartz said.
Schwartz just missed in the last attempt at breaking his own school mark by 2 inches, narrowly clipping the bar with the back of his heel. It was still a great way to end an amazing journey for a senior that fully expected a high showing in Des Moines on Thursday, just not the highest showing in the 3A high jump.
“I got fourth at the Drake Relays, and I figured that’s probably how it would go for me at state,” Schwartz said. “I never thought I’d be able to win the state championship. I’m going up against the best jumpers in the entire state. It really hasn’t sunk in that I won the state championship.”