Goodale Overcomes Injury, Ready for State Finals

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By WSIL Sports

CARBONDALE -- A small scar on her right knee is the only visible sign of an injury Sarah Goodale would rather forget.

"I mean I was freaking out," Goodale said. "I thought it was all over, that I was done."

Last summer Goodale tore her ACL at an AAU basketball tournament in Indianapolis. The three-sport athlete had surgery a few weeks later and spent the next six months recovering.

"I mean I was heartbroken," she said. "I felt so bad not being able to compete in cross county and in basketball. It was really hard but it ended up being really good for me."

In March, Goodale returned to her favorite sport, track and field.

"Once she got over the fact that you can come back, I think it benefited her," Carbondale head track and field coach Greg Storm said. "Now, she did loose her fall and winter season but in the long run it's definitely paying off."

At last week's sectional meet, Goodale qualified for state in three events, including a second place finish in the 300-meter low hurdles. But her biggest accomplishment was a new personal record in the high jump, where she cleared 5'4.

"In years past I always started out really well in the beginning of the season and then got tired towards the end," Goodale said. "But to be able to jump 5'4, especially at sectionals was awesome."

High jump is just one of seven events Sarah will compete in next year at Vanderbilt University. Goodale has been a heptathlete since her freshman year. She won the national title in the event at the USTF Junior Olympics in 2011.

"It's a really taxing event over two days," she said. "It makes you a lot tougher and it's kind of a guts competition, you've got to have a lot of stamina."

Goodale will hope to use that stamina to win a state title at this weekend's meet. Even with a reconstructed right knee.
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