Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School’s Dawson Stevens waits his turn during the javelin competition at the Class A track and field championships in Waterboro on Saturday.
Dawson Stevens knew he was good but also that nothing was guaranteed.
He essentially when wire-to-wire in the javelin this season, recording the state’s farthest throw early in the season and holding that distinction the rest of the way.
“I’ve had this saying, ‘Compete like you’re in first but train like you’re in second,’” the Oxford Hills junior said.
“Someone could have had the best day of their life and overthrew me. You got to play like you’re in first but practice like you’re in second.”
That motivation paid off. Stevens’ season reached its apex when he won the Class A state championship in early June.
He also peaked, surpassing the 170-10 he threw in April with a 177-01, a new personal record and the farthest any Maine high school athlete threw the javelin in 2017.
The week before the state meet, Stevens won the KVAC title. A week after the state meet, he placed ninth at the New England Championships in Norwell, Massachusetts.
From the start of the season, Stevens was focused on the state title.
“The whole goal was to be a state champion,” Stevens said.
Stevens is a junior, but only in his second season of high school track and field. His main focus is on wrestling and football, but training for those events sent him into the spring more prepared for long throws. Even during the track season, Stevens said the Oxford Hills football players were lifting as much as five days each week.
“He’s just very strong. He’s gotten a lot stronger since last year, and he’s just translated it into track and field,” Oxford Hills throwing coach Nate Danforth said.
Stevens was more than a strong arm. He also is one of the fastest runners in the tri-county area, winning the 100- and 200-meter dashes at most regular season meets, and competing at state in both events.
“He’s special, he’s definitely special,” Danforth said. “And he’s fairly humble about it. Obviously, there is some confidence in the young man, but he’s very humble, as far as I’m concerned.”
2017 All-Region Boys’ Track
Dawson Stevens Oxford Hills Jr. javelin, sprints
Hunter White Dirigo Sr. 400, TJ, 200, LJ
Kyle Farrar Mountain Valley Sr. long jump, triple jump
Ethan Solis Lewiston Sr. 400, 200
Zion Gurney Edward Little Sr. high jump
Benjamin Musese Lewiston Jr. triple jump, long jump
Andrew Peterson, Gray-New Gloucester Jr. 100, 200
Alex Thompson Edward Little Jr. pole vault
Gordon Silas Oxford Hills So. LJ, TJ, PV
Avry Griffin Telstar Sr. 110H, 300H
Michael Schlotterbeck Lisbon Sr. racewalk
Dalton Berry Dirigo Jr. shot put, discus
Connor Kaplinger Lewiston Jr. javelin
Matt Syphers Edward Little So. racewalk
Chris Glover Mountain Valley Jr. javelin, long jump
Eli Turner Mountain Valley Sr. 100, 200
Kurtis Bolton Lisbon Sr. 400, pole vault
John Bowen Oxford Hills Sr. 100, 200, LJ
Abbas Muktar Lewiston Jr. 800
Connor Jackson Edward Little Jr. hurdles, high jump
Zane Dustin Oxford Hills Sr. 400, 200
Abshir Abukar, Lewiston Sr. 300H
Joseph Gurney Gray-New Gloucester Sr. shot put, discus
Caleb Bowen Leavitt Jr. triple jump, long jump
Nate Scott Winthrop Sr. 100, 200
Dylan Goff Monmouth Jr. 400
Xavier Romanowski Mt. Abram Sr. 1,600, 3,200
Zack Wallace Monmouth So. shot put, discus
Aaron Vermette Telstar Jr. long jump, discus
Dominic Sclafani Oxford Hills Jr. 1,600, 3,200
Ethan Thombs Monmouth Jr. javelin
Zach Duguay Mountain Valley Sr. shot put