Adapting to a selfless attitude helped Nashua-Plainfield girls’ head coach Jessica Mahnesmith make history in 2022.
Mahnesmith led the Huskies to their first state championship in women’s track. The Huskies captured the State 1A title by beating defending champion and perennial powerhouse Madrid by five points (59-54).
“Talk about goosebumps, excitement, emotion, pride – all the thrills!” Mahnesmith said in a text message. “Coach (Amber) McCall and I have said it so many times this season and I can’t say it enough, we’re so proud of our girls.”
The ability to engineer a title without a slew of elite individual performances earned Mahnesmith All-Iowa Girls Coach of the Year.
“We talk about the hard work and determination it took to accomplish the feats of this season, but there were many other key aspects that contributed to the overall success,” Mahnesmith said. “We had girls placed in events that they weren’t previously focused on racing. They did so without hesitation. We had girls who selflessly gave up their individual events or their favorite events , to contribute to a greater victory for the team. We had teammates who supported, encouraged and pushed each other during practices and every meeting that led to the state.
Rookie Kadence Huck won the only individual title for the Huskies when she won the 400m girls 1A. Nashua-Plainfield won the sprint and medley relays and captured four bronze medals.
Abbie Hyde; Makenzie Foelske; Jennah Carpenter; Rylee Weiss and Jordyn Frost helped set the tone for the season. Hyde, Foelske, Carpenter and Weiss were excellent senior managers and they helped make everything easy – and a lot of fun – for Mahnesmith.
“While winning the state championship was beyond exciting and extremely rewarding, the most enjoyable part of this season was watching these girls grow and bond as a team,” Mahnesmith said. “Seeing them support each other on and off the track, build friendships, create memories together and set and achieve their personal goals – those are the things that really made the season for me. Being a part of helping to these girls developing a love for playing sports and growing as young adults, that’s what we coaches are signing up for.”