Ever since making it to state last season, West Holmes senior Josh Goudy has been anticipating the opportunity to return to the Div. II state track and field meet in Columbus to not just qualify for state, but also to advance beyond what he did last year and make it to the podium and qualify as an All-Ohioan.
On June 3 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, the senior’s long-awaited date with state finally arrived.
Goudy made the most of his final day as a West Holmes Knight, uncorking a throw of 153-01 to qualify as one of the nine athletes to make the finals.
That distance turned out to be his biggest effort of the day, and it was good enough to land him in sixth place on the podium. The Knights’ big man had secured his place as an All-Ohioan and will now be honored as one of the school’s greats, his picture and accomplishment to be immortalized on the WHHS Wall of Fame.
His finish was four spots better than last year’s state meet, where he placed 10th, an agonizing two spots from All-Ohio.
There was no agonizing this time around. Goudy made sure of that.
Goudy threw in flight one and placed third there, then had to sit and wait while eight more state qualifiers did their best to unseat him. He ended up qualifying for the finals in fourth place, and while two throwers bested him over the final three attempts, it didn’t remove him from accomplishing his ultimate goal.
“I am so excited and so blessed to be able to stand on that podium at the end of my career,” Goudy said.
Goudy’s effort made him the second man in the Goudy household to compete at state. His dad and throwing coach Eric Goudy competed at state in the discus as a Knight and placed eighth. Unfortunately back then, the state only acknowledged the top six athletes for All-Ohio instead of eight.
But the coach was thrilled for his pupil and son, and the two now have a shared experience, one that nobody can take away.
Knowing he will now have his picture on the West Holmes Wall of Fame also is something he has dreamed about.
“That is a huge honor,” Goudy said. “I remember walking through there as a little kid looking at all of those athletes, and the goal for a long time has been to be immortalized on that wall. So to be able to do that gives me chills.”
Goudy said he knew the field would be extremely tough, and the numbers from two through 10 were all bunched together.
Big Sam Meece of Napoleon made everyone battle for second when he unleashed a mammoth throw of 183-06. From there, however, it was anyone’s game including Goudy as the second-place distance was 159-08 with the 10th-place throw coming in at 149-10.
All it would have taken any of those competitors was one great effort, and things could have changed drastically.
Goudy had thrown a beautiful 165-footer earlier in the tournament trail, so he knew he had it in him. It just never materialized, but he wasn’t going to complain.
“I know I have better in me, but we did what we had to do to get on the podium, and I’ll take that,” Goudy said.
Now as the Goudy family gathers around the dinner table, the son will have bragging rights over the father in every regard, from breaking his dad’s school record to earning a podium place.
“It’s a huge honor to follow in my dad’s footsteps,” Goudy said. “He was a great thrower, and to be able to break his record and to place feels so good.”
Second, third, sixth or eighth, Goudy said he was disappointed at first with his distance, but after he started talking to various people, it began to sink in that this was something special.
“I’m still on the podium, and I’m still going to be All-Ohio,” Goudy said. “That is something I have wanted for a long time.”