Only a junior, Chad Zallow came into the track season as a defending state champion and with it came a lot of pressure.
But it didn’t bother him.
“Yeah, there was definitely a lot of pressure,” Zallow said. “They [my team] didn’t pressure me but I felt the pressure from my team, coaches and everything just trying to defend my title and help my team.”
His brother Carl, who will be running for Youngstown State next year, helped Chad become the runner he was this season.
“He’s definitely really important to me,” Zallow said. “On the track he pushes me to 100 percent every single day.”
Zallow was the defending champion in the 110-meter hurdle and the 300-hurdle races. After breaking the state record in the 300 last year, the state meet had a different feel this year.
“Last year, I didn’t have has much pressure on me because I wasn’t defending my title,” Zallow said. “This year, I knew I had people gunning for me. It was a different mindset for sure.”
In the preliminary round, Zallow qualified second in the 100 hurdles behind John Zint.
The finals were a different story as Zallow ran a 13.93, beating Zint’s 14.20 to capture his second straight title.
Zallow also finished as the state runner-up in this year’s 300 hurdles.
“My biggest goal was to be a state champion and stay healthy,” Zallow said. “I just wanted to come back strong [from injury in the indoor season] and be a state champion again.”
Zallow was successful this year and he wants to run track in college after next season. He is looking into schools like Ohio State and Michigan, but he is not completely satisfied with his high school career yet.
“Next year, I want to finish up with a good GPA [grade-point average],” Zallow said. “Also, I want to defend my titles in the 110 and get another title in 300 hurdles.”