STORM LAKE - Even though he was a state qualifier in the discus and shot put, as well as a starter on the Anamosa High School basketball and baseball teams, former Raider Drew Beall never really considered himself an ‘athlete.’
“Sports were always a secondary thought for me,” said Beall, who is about to wrap an extremely successful four-year career with the Buena Vista University men’s track and field program.
“When it came to sports, I wasn’t really recruited by anyone for any of the sports I played coming out of high school. What I was recruited for, however, was academics. Buena Vista gave me an academic scholarship to attend their university and it was at that point that I decided that I might like to keep my throwing career going.”
Are the Beavers ever glad he did.
It was Beall who reached out to Buena Vista track and field coaches as a mere freshman about possibly throwing for the program, and the rest has been, as they say, ‘history.’
“I did some numbers crunching before I got here and realized with the distances I had in the shot put and discus at Anamosa, that I could at the very least be on a team at the D-III level in college,” said Beall, a senior who will be graduating next week with a Computer Science degree.
“What I never thought was possible was being able to compete nationally at the collegiate level.”
Beall competed on the D-III national stage last spring in the discus, and placed 17th in the country with a throw of 149-feet, 9-inches in La Crosse, Wisconsin.
Beall also owns the Buena Vista indoor shot put school record, which he set as a sophomore, and is preciously close to also breaking the school’s record in the discus.
“Hopefully, I’ve got a few more chances to try and get that school record in the discus,” said Beall, who will be taking part in a last-chance meet this week looking to earn a second-straight trip to the D-III National championships, set for May 23-25 in Geneva, Ohio.
“It’s funny how things work out. In high school and early on here in college, it was the shot put that was always my best event. Then during the course of my career here at Buena Vista, that changed to the discus. I don’t know how or why that happened, I just became more consistent with the disc.”
That consistency paid off again this past weekend as Beall was in Cedar Rapids Saturday, May 11, where he placed second in the discus after unleashing a 153-6 toss competing at the American Rivers Conference outdoor track and field championships, hosted by Coe College.
“That sure finished better than it started,” Beall said. “Coming into finals I was sitting seventh overall in the discus, then made the jump to second.”
Beall’s discus performance was one of the highlights of the meet for the Buena Vista team, while he also scored in the shot put (47-10.5) placing seventh in the league before adding a fifth-place throw in the hammer (166-8).
“I trace my success here in college to (Anamosa throwers coach) Joe Beadle and all the work he helped me with back in high school,” Beall said. “Coach Beadle gave me a good baseline to work with and taught me good technique. I took what he taught me here to college and just kept going with it.
“Hopefully, my journey isn’t quite over yet.”