Dymon Preyor usually isn’t nervous the day of a big track meet. Excited, eager, ready to go – but rarely nervous.
“But I was nervous this morning,” the Fort Osage High School junior hurdling sensation said Wednesday evening at the Suburban Middle Six Conference Track and Field Championships at William Chrisman High School.
“This is a big meet, probably the biggest meet we’ve had this season and I wanted to do well. I wanted to represent myself, my teammates and my school, and, well, I think I did that. I’m proud of myself!”
Preyor tied her longtime friend and teammate Emari Grimes with two first-place finishes, taking the gold medal in the 300-meter low hurdles (48.66 seconds) and the long jump (17 feet, 10 inches).
“I really thought I could win two gold medals, but I was nervous because of all the great competition we were going to be facing at the conference meet,” Preyor said. “But when I saw Emari do what she did I knew we could do something special too.”
Preyor was referring to Grimes’ school-record time of 56.95 seconds in the 400 meters – a personal record that shaved two seconds off the school mark and four seconds off her previous best time.
“I was like, ‘Go Emari! Go Emari!’ That was so much fun to watch,” Preyor said. “She inspired me and I’d like to think that by me winning two gold medals, I inspired her.”
While Preyor wanted to talk about Grimes, the junior sprinter felt the same way about her teammate.
“We have so much fun together on the team,” Grimes, who also won the 200, said of Preyor. “I’m proud of Dymon and know that she can do great things. We’re really excited about the rest of this season.”
When asked about training and practicing at a school with no track, Preyor just grinned.
“You know, we don’t even think about that,” she said. “Coach (J.D.) Snead does such a great job with us that we’re just one big family. If we train on the grass, we train on the grass. If we run in the halls at school, we run in the halls at school.
“We’ll never use that as an excuse. I do feel bad for our seniors, because I wish they could run on our new track next year, because I know all the underclassmen can hardly wait to see our new stadium and track.
“I think that’s one reason we’re working so hard this year. We want to get everyone excited about our track team.”
Count Snead among those individuals, as he lavishes praise of the members of his girls squad.
“They have worked so hard this year, and we have not heard a complaint,” the veteran coach said. “I’m really proud of what Dymon is doing this season. She had a great freshman season, then didn’t have that much success last year as a sophomore.
“She has worked hard this season, and look at the results. She has so much talent and drive, the sky’s the limit!”
Preyor began hurdling in eighth grade, and chuckles at the memory.
“I don’t even know why I started hurdling,” she said. “A coach asked and I said OK, and it was tough at first. I don’t think I really felt like a hurdler till my freshman year – you know, where I could go out and compete and not have to think about what I was doing.
“I had some success and I think that long jumping and hurdling really complement each other. I’ve really gotten to the point where I love both of those events. And I love Coach Snead.
“He encourages all of us. He is so positive and we all want to do well for him. We want to work hard and make him proud, because that makes us proud, too.”