AUSTIN – Most people don’t physically exert themselves to the point where they black out, but it doesn’t seem to bother BHS’s Emma Stauber very much.
In fact, whenever Stauber races, that’s one of her goals, to run so hard that she collapses, and it was this kind of effort that propelled the senior to a medal at Saturday’s state meet in the 1600.
On the last lap of her race, Stauber was in fourth place and began to kick, catching two of the three girls in front of her and falling at the finish line because her legs just wouldn’t carry her any more.
After the race, Stauber laid on the track for a few seconds until she could recover, secure in the knowledge that her time of 5:09 had earned her silver and matched her personal best time in the event. Stauber said that’s just how she races.
“There’s a lot of video of me on the ground, I stay on my feet sometimes, but I hit the track more often than not. I run hard enough in that last 100 that I run until I see black and keep running, it’s kind of hard not to hit the ground after that,” she said. “The dive was not intentional, that was as far as my legs were going to stay underneath me.”
So does she enjoy pushing her body to the point that she blacks out and can’t stay on her feet? Apparently so.
“I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t,” she said afterwards. “I’m comfortable knowing that I can run to see black in the last 100, I’m always willing to go to that well.”
Boerne High, or Team Emma, earned 10 team points on Saturday to help BHS finish 17th as a team. Stauber earned all 10 points and picked up 8 points in the 1600 and 2 more in the 3200 after she was fifth with an 11:34.54.
Sophomore Leah Smith also represented Boerne High at the 4A meet on Saturday. Smith placed eighth with a time of 12.56.
The 3200 was held Saturday morning and then Stauber had at least a 12-hour break before the 1600 that night so she went back to her hotel room, got off her feet and rested up for the mile race that night.
While at the hotel, Stauber said it was hard to not think about the fact that her next race would also be her last in a Greyhound uniform.
“It’s not something you can think about during the race, but definitely I cried a little before the race,” she said. “One of my competitors comforted me. It means a lot to be here like this.”
While one of her competitors comforted her, another tried to bump her and a few other runners when all the maneuvering began and each runner started to make their move.
At several points in Saturday’s 1600 race, Stauber shortened her stride to avoid contact and stay on her feet. After the race, there was a delay in giving out the medals and Stauber believes it was so they could review the tape to make sure there was no interference by any of the runners.
“I was hit and somebody was hit, both of us were hit at the same time. I stepped out to try and go around someone because I knew I was going to hit her,” Stauber said. “We were all very ready to maneuver to try and get where we needed to, but it was rough. There was a lot of physicality, but I think by the end of it we really respected each other, I was happy with how it went.”