From her days growing up in Ravenna, sports and McKenna Schmidt have always gone hand-in-hand. Schmidt kept herself busy with various athletic activities, eventually competing in basketball, volleyball, golf, track and softball at Ravenna High School.
Basketball has always been Schmidt’s go-to game, as she played the sport first of any and got to experience the basketball-heavy culture of Ravenna. That is why it was so meaningful for her to make it to the State Basketball Tournament as a freshman and sophomore.
“It was practically a dream come true,” Schmidt said. We would always go down to state and watch the games when I was little, and you’d just picture yourself being there.”
In addition to her basketball pursuits, Schmidt also learned to love the sport of high jump. While she was initially a pole vaulter, a broken foot led her to try the high jump. After experiencing some immediate success, she kept up with the activity both at the high school level and at the Cornhusker State Games, where she has been competing for years.
“It’s a super fun environment and it’s also a perfect way to stay consistent with high jumping,” Schmidt said. “Any chance for me to get in and jump I take advantage of it.”
Shortly after this year’s State Games, Schmidt will experience her toughest competition in any sport yet as she jumps to the college level with Doane University. Deciding on where to attend college was difficult for her, as she had offers from other NAIA schools, but connections from past Ravenna athletes and coaches and a unique opportunity helped bring her to Doane.
While most college athletes focus on one sport, it’s fitting that the well-rounded Schmidt will play both basketball and do the high jump at Doane.
“It’s definitely not the common thing to do and I was really blessed to be given that opportunity,” she said. “It’ll keep me on my feet for sure.”
Registration is currently open for the 2019 Cornhusker State Games. Featuring competition in 70 sports, participants can find more information and register online at our 2019 Sport Listing