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One last shot for Pirates' Leible
The Perryville senior wants to improve on last year's 10th-place finish at the state meet.
For Garrett Leible, this weekend's Class 3 track and field championships in Jefferson City will provide him a chance to redeem himself after a disappointing performance in the shot put at last year's meet.
The Perryville senior placed 10th in 2008 after barely making it out of sectionals the week before.
"Going into sectionals, I was one of the top contenders," he said. "I feel like I should have been on the podium at state."
This season he was determined to prove that he was more than a one-year wonder. Leible won both district and sectional titles, and he will be the school's only representative at the state meet.
"I just went out this season to prove that last year wasn't a fluke," he said.
He began throwing his sophomore year and has become one of the premier throwers in the area. He won sectionals this year with a throw of 52 feet, 6 inches.
Leible attributes his success this season to good coaching and becoming stronger in the offseason.
"I hit the weight room and got a lot stronger," he said. "I was also able to work on my form and tried to perfect it."
He says that competition is his main motivational tool when he steps on to the field to throw.
"I'm a competitive person," he said. "Competition really gets me fired up."
In addition to the shot put, Leible is also a standout on the football field. An offensive/defensive lineman for the Pirates, Leible has received a football scholarship to Missouri University of Science and Technology, where he also plans to walk on to the track and field team.