Butler County Times Gazette
  • Awards week: Performance of the year

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  • After taking sixth place at last year’s state track and field meet, Zach Budda knew he would have a great chance to get to the top of that podium the next time around.
    Winning State might seem like a lofty goal, but it wasn’t for Budda. He knew he’d be one of the premiere high jumpers in the state this year. The best part is that he worked just as hard and was even more motivated to stake his claim.
    Not only that, but Budda also wanted to set his place in the school record books.
    Budda accomplished both goals in stellar fashion. He had a near-flawless performance at the biggest stage to win the high jump state championship. For that, Budda earns the Gazette’s performance of the year honor for AHS athletes in 2012.
    Budda made history midway through the season when he set a new school record with a jump of 6 feet, 8 inches. He matched that mark again at the state meet, a mark the other competitors couldn’t match.
    Budda had a great senior season all the way through. He improved on the soccer field as a defender, and was a valuable bench player for the basketball team who could rebound and even make a highlight dunk here or there. During track, he also showed he had speed while running for the 4x100-meter relay team.
    But it’ll be his gold-medal and record-breaking performance that cemented his place in school history.
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