Obstacles no match for Hohl's determination
It takes a lot of determination to become an All-American. But after reaching that plateau by persevering through reconstructive ankle surgery and back injuries throughout an entire career, determined doesn't seem to be enough of a description of Logan Hohl.
After breaking countless records as a track standout and state champion hurdler for the Orion Chargers, Hohl continued on to Monmouth College, where he recently competed in the finals at the NCAA D-III track and field nationals in Marietta, Ohio.
A freshman in outdoor competition, after redshirting his first year due to an injury, Hohl placed sixth in the 400-meter hurdles and claimed his first individual All-American accolade.
“It means a lot because it is my first individual,” said Hohl who won the 110-hurdle crown in class 1A in his senior campaign on 2007. “It’s nice to be able to get to where you are on your own.”
Hohl planned to use his first outdoor track season at Monmouth as a rebuilding year. After an ankle injury that laid him up for two months in the summer of 2008, Hohl couldn’t even begin training until the indoor season began.
“When I had surgery my doctor told me that I probably wouldn’t be very happy with my upcoming season,” Hohl said. “It was going to be very hard to get back into things. I practically had to learn how to walk again.”
In the “last chance” meet for athletes attempting to advance onto the national meet, Hohl ran a time of 52.5—a full second faster than his previous best set at the Midwest Conference meet, where he won in record-setting time just seven days earlier.
In just one week prior to nationals, he went from being ranked 10th to third.
During the preliminaries of the national event, Hohl ran a qualifying time of 52.66, which was the fifth-best time in the event heading into the finals. However, Hohl had his concerns on consistency for the finals due to lack of endurance and his quick turnaround at the national meet.
“I could run one good race, but running two good races was really hard,” Hohl said in reference to racing in the preliminaries and then turning around to race two days later.
In the finals, Hohl was in third place coming around the final curve of the track. But, the lack of endurance caught up with him and Hohl clipped the final hurdle leaving him with a sixth-place finish. To some, a sixth-place finish after gaining on the second-place runner in the final yards of the race would be a disappointment. To Hohl, it’s just the opposite.
“Just the fact that I made it to nationals made me really happy,” Hohl said. “I feel really good about knowing that I can get sixth even with injuries, and if I was healthy, who knows what I could be running.”
The talented hurdler looks to next season, hoping for a much healthier fortune to help gain back even more than what he already has. Each year may come with new challenges, but the obstacles that stood in the way have been no match for the All-American determination of Logan Hohl.