Athlete of the Week: Jasmine Staebler - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Athlete of the Week: Jasmine Staebler

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ELKADER (KWWL) -

Even Jasmine Staebler -- herself -- is a bit surprised at what she's accomplished in her early high school career.

"I was like, there's a lot of upperclassmen here. I'm just going to go and try and compete, see how I'll do, and it turned out pretty good," said Staebler.

As a freshman and a sophomore at Clayton Ridge, Jasmine won state track titles in the 200, the 800, twice in the 400, and one more as the anchor of the Eagles sprint medley team -- and she still remembers that first one as if it was yesterday.

"That was unbelievable," she said. "I didn't know what to expect coming in to state track as a freshman. I didn't know what the competition was like, and it was a just a great experience. It was really fun."

What makes Jasmine somewhat unusual, however, is the fact she's transferred her sprint success into a very accomplished cross country career.

"I was very surprised and happy when I heard, when she was a freshman, that was going to do cross country, and then when I had her in track she was fantastic," said coach Angie Cook. "And there's not a whole lot of athletes that do that, that can go from sprints and getting three state titles this last year, and then coming and placing at the state cross country meet the last 2 years."

"You really have to adjust," Staebler said. "At first it's hard, because, oh, I have to run two-and-a-half miles, not just the 200, but you just kind of adjust in each sport," said Staebler.

In her first two seasons, she finished 19th and 7th respectively at the state meet. So far this year, she's got one win, one second-place finish and a third-place spot at Tuesday's 31-team Starmont invitational.

For Jasmine, getting in the right frame of mind before races has been a key to her success.

"I try to just get away from my family and get away from everyone, and just get in the zone, and try not to talk to anyone else," said Staebler.

And with a great approach -- and 2 years of high school competition left -- the sky's the limit for this Eagle: our athlete of the week.

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