Andale's Ast much more than nations best javelin thrower

Jeff Ast of Andale is not only the best javelin thrower in the country hes a multi-sport athlete.
By: Sports in Kansas - Chet Kuplen
May 22, 2015

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Andale junior Jeff Ast has been the nations leading javelin thrower all season long as he opened up the year with a 2015 national best of 226-02. But Ast has proved recently he is much more than just a javelin thrower as he also has a discus mark of 178-02, just outside of the national top 50 and the #4 throw in Kansas this season.

"I was surprised with my discus throw this year. Hopefully I can keep it consistent in the 170's." Ast said.

His discus throw also may have came along because of his injury to his elbow, giving him less time to throw javelin and more time to focus on his other events, but it wasn't because of choice.

"I tore my UCL (Ulnar Collateral Ligament). I am getting Tommy John Surgery. I probably won't be able to throw the javelin as far the rest of the year but I have been able to put more effort into my other events." Ast said.

So we may not see any state records in the javelin fall this year for him, but he is still very capable of getting up to state and competing for a good mark. However he will have some heavy competition from his teammate Luke Walstad, who is currently ranked #13 in the United States with his mark of 199-07. How do two of the best javelin throwers in the country wind up on the same team at a 4A high school?

"We have a great coaching staff, easily one of the best in the state. Our throwing coach Robby Spexarth threw at the college level. He really knows his stuff," Ast said. "Our weights program at Andale is very good."

Ast, who stands 6-foot-5 and weighs 240 pounds, was also one of the top basketball players in 4A-I this past season averaging over 10 points per contest. He was also an all-state selection for the 4A-II state champion football team at tight end and defensive end. Track and football are definitely options for the 2016 prospect at the next level.

"I've gotten some letters and talked to some coaches, but I haven't gotten any offers at this point. I haven't really decided what sport I want to play at the next level at this point." Ast said.

Being a three sport athlete Ast hasn't specialized. Who would know that the nations #1 javelin thrower only really throws during the season?

"During my track offseason I work on other sports. I throw very little to none at all. We hit it hard in the weights for the summer when I am not playing basketball or football." Ast said.

Although an injury has slowed him down, still expect Ast to compete in three events at next weeks state outdoor. He also has a mark of just under 50 in the shot put (49-09.50), which gives him a great opportunity to medal at the state meet.

"I want to place at state in all three events. Winning state in the javelin would be awesome, but it's going to be tough. The main goal is to win our third state track and field championship as a team."

Ast will throw today at the 4A regionals in Holcomb.