|Bid to the State Meet: Saltillo's Frew running in the 100-meter dash|
|Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor|
May 8, 2006 - SALTILLO - A month ago, David Frew had never ran the 100-meter dash in his life. Heck, the Saltillo senior had never even come out for the track team before.
A baseball player first and foremost, Frew decided to dabble in track this year after coach Garry Davison recruited him to run on some of the Lions' relay teams heading into the district meet.
That offer from Davison has turned into an invitation to the UIL State Track and Field Meet this weekend in Austin.
"I never ran track before," Frew said. "I just kind of stumbled into it."
Frew has turned into a state-qualifying sprinter in the 100-meter dash, placing second at the Class A, Region III meet, much to the admitted surprise of both Frew and Davison.
"I never thought we'd take a kid from Saltillo to the state meet in the 100," said Davison. "I didn't think we'd ever see that."
Had it not been for a bit of misfortune for another Saltillo athlete, Frew might not be in that position.
Davison had first talked to Frew about running the 400 and the relays, but when a Saltillo sprinter became academically ineligible, the coach decided to give Frew a shot in the 100. Problem is, he had never even come out of the starting blocks before the district meet.
"He came out of a standing start at district, and he won it - we were shocked," Davison said. "He didn't do real well at area coming out of the blocks, but he did well enough to qualify. Then, we had a couple of weeks to work on it and he really did well at regional."
Frew won the District 21-A event, came in fourth at the area meet, which was good enough to qualify for regional, then finished second behind McLeod's Josiah Thompkins as he and two other runners crossed in a photo finish. Only the top two places advance to state, so Saltillo fans had to wait out the results as the finish was analyzed.
"At the regional meet, they picked him third or fourth, but they had the photo finish and they saw he came in second," Davison said.
Frew was fourth with about 20 meters to go, the coach said, but was strong enough to overtake the other two runners at the tape.
"I was expecting to get fourth or fifth at regional," Frew admitted. "I won my heat because the guy from McLeod couldn't get stretched out and I beat him. I knew I was quick, but I never realized I was actually fast."
Davison said coaches knew Frew could run because of his speed on the basepaths during baseball workouts. But, because he transferred from North Lamar last spring, he had never ran track at Saltillo. He never did at NL, either.
"It's been great for him and great for the school," Davison said of the transfer. "He's really put a lot into it and worked at it, and I like to see a kid who has worked at something and put a lot into it, have it pay off for him."
The challenge at the state meet will be even greater. Frew is scheduled to run at 1:25 p.m. Saturday at Mike A. Myers Stadium. He has the eighth-fastest qualifying time with an 11.36.
"We know going into the state meet that he's got a challenge," Davison said. "But once he gets in the race he's got a chance because he's going to fight for it.We're going to work on getting him more comfortable coming out of the blocks.
"He's got the speed, we've just got to make sure he's comfortable at the start. He always finishes real well."