COLUMBUS — Nolan Landis made history on Saturday during the state track and field meet at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus.
The Madison senior kicked off his day in the Division I shot put and claimed first place with a distance of 62-11.75.
One state championship wasn’t enough, though.
Roughly three hours after receiving his medal, Landis flung his discus 191-11 feet for his second state title of the day.
“It feels great, I just really have a lot to be thankful for,” Landis said shortly before receiving his second gold medal. “Obviously I came in here today wanting to treat it like any other meet and focus on myself and it paid off.”
While he claimed two championships, three turned out to be Landis’ lucky number.
He defeated runner-up Michael Shoaf, of Rocky River, by 3 inches in the shot put, then outdistanced Tanner Watson, of Brecksville, by 3 feet, 3 inches in the discus.
Landis is the first male state track and field champion in Madison history. He also became the first to double up in the
shot put and discus since Aaron Zedella of St. Edward’s did so in 2013.
“I’m really starting to realize it now, it was a historic day in a way,” Landis said. “Obviously the goal was to come in today and win both and that’s why I’m kind of at a loss for words right now, because I wasn’t expecting it. Last year, I came here and had a rough day, so the redemption feels fantastic.”
Landis, an Indiana University commit, finished in fifth in last year’s discus event and seventh in the shot put.
The future Hoosier stepped into the circle for his last discus throw on Saturday already knowing he had the title locked up.
Still, he energized the crowd, unleashed one final throw in his Blue Streaks uniform, then found his brother, Cameron, and the two embraced each other.
“It means a lot to me,” said Cameron, who was a Division I NCAA East Preliminary Round qualifier for Penn this season. “It’s not something I was able to do as a thrower and to see him go ahead and do that, I think you always want more for — whether that be your siblings or one day kids — you always want more for the people close to you that you love and so, yeah, that was really exciting. … I’m honestly just overall beaming with pride for him.”
A feature story on Landis will be published later this week.