Lakeridge's Jake Flury sees college track season cut short
Jake Flury was right where he wanted to be.
Flury, a 2019 graduate of Lakeridge High School, felt like he had found the right college and the right athletic program when he landed with the Western Oregon University men's track and field team.
But now, Flury's inaugural college season has gone wrong.
Like many other college athletes across the country, Flury just saw his 2020 season cut short by restrictions related to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.
Flury, who's majoring in earth science and planetary geology at WOU, was working in class when he heard the news that his season had been cut short.
"I was texted in class by my coaches. They basically said that all collegiate sports in spring were shut down by the NCAA," Flury said. "I was definitely shocked, and pretty upset. I was really looking forward to the season."
Flury, 18, would have been one of three triple jumpers to compete for the Wolves this spring and may have also seen some time in the long jump. After all his training and work during the indoor season — he leapt 41 feet, 8 inches to place eighth in the Bruin/Pilot Indoor Meet at the University of Portland Feb. 9 — the loss of his first college season was tough to take.
School: Western Oregon University
Year in School: Freshman
Major: Earth science/planetary geology
Team: Track and field
High School: Lakeridge, Class of 2019
"I expected to compete a lot in outdoor season because I knew I was good enough to not only place in meets, but contribute points to help our school win," Flury said. "It still is disappointing. I miss training. I miss my teammates and I miss getting ready to jump."
Since WOU's season came to an end — the Wolves' last event was the Willamette Opener March 7 — Flury and his teammates have been trying to come to grips with the changes to their world.
"I haven't been able to train as much since the cancelation because there are restrictions where I can train," he said. "I'm trying my best to stay active … (just) leaving occasionally for food or to train when I can. It's a total flip around of my life."
For now, Flury is taking classes online, working out when he can and aiming for the future.
"My third term of classes is all online, which is fine, but again, back to the total flip around of my life. (It's) definitely a strange adjustment," he added. "(I just want to) come back stronger and better. I'm just looking at this season as more time to get ready and bring it next season."
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