Prep boys track: Stansbury pair pushes each other
Stansbury sprinters Dallin Didericksen and Hudson Conrad lose track of the time between the quiet, intense moments spent hovering over a pair of starting blocks to the final, lurching moments across the white finish-line stripe.
A sub-11-second slingshot down the straightaway doesn't leave much time to ponder strategy.
"It's usually all a blur," Didericksen said. "I remember getting ready and then the finish."
It's in between meets, and seasons, that Didericksen and Conrad think about their goals, form, opponents and the targets now placed squarely on their backs.
"It's a lot of pressure, knowing that everyone knows who you are and your times," Didericksen said. "You feel like you have to live up to that expectation."
But few expected two kids from Stansbury to dominate the sprints like Didericksen and Conrad.
Though football is his primary sport, Conrad burst onto the track scene last season by placing fifth in the 100 and 200 meters at the state championship as a freshman. Didericksen, now a junior, finished just out of the state final, but his time of 10.98 seconds at the Deseret Peak Invitational on March 27 is the fifth-fastest time in the state this year.
Conrad edged Didericksen at the same meet in 10.93 seconds for the fourth-best time in the state. Together, they helped lead the Stallions to the Class 4A title in the 400 relay last season.
The Stansbury sprinting duo now hopes for much more.
"I won't feel satisfied until I win a state championship," Conrad said.
"I just want to win state in both the 100 and the 200," Didericksen said.
But while Didericksen and Conrad run to win, they are also in friendly competition with each other, on meet days and every day at practice. It's added a level of intensity to the season that both agree has made them better.
"He gets in my head a bit, but I know I wouldn't be showing up if it weren't for him," Conrad said.
"Our competitiveness has helped a lot," Didericksen said. "We don't have to wait for meets to be pushed because we push each other every day."
But for all their similarities, the sprinting duo took different routes to dominance on the track. Conrad simply runs track to boost his football recruiting profile and to turn some heads.
"I just wanna get a time out there for colleges and show everyone how fast I can be."
Meanwhile, Didericksen has taken a more disciplined approach to the track game, using his background in tae kwon do to propel him to the elite levels of high-school competition. During the offseason, he and his father head up the canyon to take on some hill sprints to stay sharp for the upcoming season.
"Running in college is my ultimate goal," Didericksen said.
Now if only their bodies would cooperate.
Conrad tore a ligament in his foot during the football season that left him at less than 100 percent this season. He said his doctors say his foot won't be healed fully until long after the state track champions are crowned. Meanwhile, Didericksen is nursing a hamstring injury that kept him out of the 200-meter race at last weekend's Carbon Invitational.
"We're both just trying to make sure we're ready for region and state," Didericksen said. "We are always in the training room together. We help keep each other positive."
The duo likely will have to skip the BYU Invitational to nurse their nagging injuries. Fortunately, both qualified to race the 100-meter event at state at the first invitational of the season.
"I'll be getting lots of massages between now and then," Didericksen said. "I'm just going to do everything I can to make sure I'm ready to compete."
It's all for the forgotten seconds between starting block and finish line.
"It's such a rush," Didericksen said. "The finish, and just the moments after, trying to see where everyone finished there's nothing more exciting."