U.S. Olympic track: Tacoma's Andrea Geubelle finishes third in women's triple jump
Funny thing, but Andrea Geubelle had learned to triple jump in the drippy Northwest. The Curtis High of Tacoma competitor opted for a change...
Seattle Times staff reporter
EUGENE, Ore. — Funny thing, but Andrea Geubelle had learned to triple jump in the drippy Northwest. The Curtis High of Tacoma competitor opted for a change of scenery and "to give myself a chance to grow up," and enrolled at Kansas.
But the Olympic trials brought her back to her approximate neck of the woods. And on a cool, drizzly Monday evening, she knew the bittersweet feeling — at 20 years old — of finishing third in the triple jump, yet not making the Olympic team because she lacked the "B"qualifying standard.
Geubelle went 45 feet, 3 inches on her first jump, and didn't better it. The standard is 46-3 ¼.
"As much as I'm used to it from high school, it's still not easy to jump in the rain," said Geubelle. "I wanted to make the team. To get third, and feel like you should be on the team and not, it's hard."
After the competition, Geubelle appeared overcome in the competitors' area near the runway. They gave her an American flag and she accompanied Amanda Smock (the only Olympic qualifier) and Sheena Gordon on a victory lap.
You could say Geubelle got the stars but not the stripes.
Smock, like Geubelle, had her winning 45-9 on the first try.
"Throughout the finals, nobody really improved," said Geubelle. "It's hard to stay warm out there, hard to stay fast."
Geubelle said she had been jumping in the 46-foot range recently in practice. But that went for naught.
The women's triple jump is one of the weakest events in American track and field, a double-edged sword as Geubelle moves forward. The forefront is there for her — or somebody else.
"To be 20 years old and placing third in the Olympic trials ... I still haven't even committed my life to track," she said philosophically. "I'm in school (a rising senior), I do track kind of on the side. The moment I'm able to make track my job, so many things are going to come together.
"I have so much more to come. We're going to do big things."
Information in this article, originally published June 26, 2012, was corrected June 27, 2012. Due to an editing error, a previous version of this story incorrectly referred to the "A" qualifying standard in the women's triple jump instead of the "B" qualifying standard of 46 feet, 3-1/4 inches.