There's a first time for everything, and at least for Chandler High (Ariz.) senior Jacob Slate, that experience came Saturday at the Great Southwest High School Indoor Classic.
Slate had never competed in the weight throw.
But it didn't quite matter. Slate not only earned a great debut PR by tossing a winning throw of 72 feet, 1.75 inches, but he also broke the meet record -- competitors started competing in the event last year -- and landed at US #7 with the attempt.
"I was shocked," Slate said. "But I knew the throw felt good. I knew it was out."
Slate also finished second in the shot put, finishing with a mark of 46-10.25. He was one of three teammates from Chandler that scored US top 20 marks on the day -- that included TJ Green in the 60m hurdles (8.05) and Imani Lee in the triple jump (48-2).
The throw came on his second attempt.
"I threw it right where I need to get it," he said. "Usually I rip with my left. I was patient with it. I let each turn take me around and finished it up."
Slate considers himself more of a hammer thrower. He finished 12th in the nation in the event as a junior.
Now he may have to rethink some of his strengths.
"I didn't know what to expect," he said. "I was pretty confident. I'm a hammer thrower, that's what I train for and the steps were pretty similar. But I think it translated pretty well and I think that showed in the numbers."
What's even more promising, Slate said, is the fact that he'll have some time now to practice with the weight implement.
He only used two turns on Saturday, but said he should add a third or fourth over the next coupe of weeks.
Slate said his next meet will take him to California.
"Hopefully we'll get some big numbers out there," he said.