Seymour runner signs on with Jags

Everything has come together for Daniel Hauersperger his senior year inside and out of athletics.

Following a successful cross-country season in which he earned the title of Hoosier Hills Conference champion, Hauersperger has maintained his dominance in distance running this track season.

Hauersperger earned a pair of blue ribbons in the HHC track meet, finishing first in the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs this past month.

Now, Hauersperger has signed with his dream school to run both track and cross-country: Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

The Jaguars have established themselves as a cross-country powerhouse in Indiana over the past few years while also gaining some national recognition.

“It just felt really awesome, all the hard work finally paid off,” Hauersperger said. “They’re a very competitive team. It might take a year or two to make varsity, but I’m happy with that because I will still be a part of the team and making them better. Hopefully my junior and senior year I will be scoring and help us make nationals.”

On the track side, Hauersperger hopes to make an immediate impact.

“Going in, my first two years, I will probably be able to contribute a lot more on the track side than the cross-country side,” Hauersperger said. “The indoor school record, in the mile, I feel like someone needs to break within the next couple years. I’m going to go for it.”

When cross-country and track coach Randy Fife first started working with Hauersperger, he learned there was more to the runner than meets the eye.

“Daniel was an undersized young man when he first came out to run, and its been fun to see the progression, growth and maturity in him,” Fife said. “He’s been a very valuable part of our program for the past four years. He’s a great leader, he came in as a follower and picked up what the older kids were teaching.

“He treats his teammates how they need to be treated, is the hardest worker on the team and does all the things a good leader needs to do. His mental approach, his willingness to not let setbacks get him down and get the best of him. He battled injury last year and it didn’t let it get to him his senior year. I think that has really helped him.”

For Hauersperger, academics also played suit in his college decision. The senior has taken a number of advanced placement courses and maintains a GPA over 4.0.

“I’m very happy for Daniel,” Fife said. “Running is very important for him and he’s a really well-rounded kid. It’s important to him, and I’m excited that he can go to the school he wants to attend, pursue the degree he wants and also run at a very high level. IUPUI is developing into a very solid program.

“He already knows the coach through some other avenues, like summer camps, and the coach have a very strong background. I couldn’t think of a better fit for him: if he’s going to run at the division I level, IUPUI is the place for him to go.”

At IUPUI, Hauersperger plans on studying applied mathematics.

“I got to talked to one of their very esteemed math professors, and he told me about their research,” Hauersperger said. “They’re actually the second most funded research institution in the state. That’s what I want to go into, research for math and science. It was the best place for that and me.”

This summer, Hauersperger plans on running with a number of his Owls teammates past and present, along with Jennings County’s Kyle Lewis. Lewis also will run for the Jaguars this fall.

“It will be nice having the support that comes with being at a college,” Hauersperger said. “It will be really cool because everyone will have to be motivated to be there. There will be a lot of people faster than me there that I can train with so I can become faster.”

Off the track

Daniel Hauersperger has been active in many activities outside of running during his tenure at Seymour high school.

Key Club: Vice President, 2011-2013

National Honor Society, 2012-2014

Fellowship of Christian Athletes, 2011-2014

Student Government: Treasurer, 2011-2012, and 2014-2015, Officer 2012-2013

Cross-country: Varsity, 2011-2014 (most improved 2012, leader 2014, most valuable 2014)

Track and field: Varsity, 2012-2014 (most valuable 2013)

Swimming: 2011 (most improved)

Chess Club: President and Founder, 2014

Band: 2011-2014

Latin Club: 2012-2014

AP Scholar with Distinction: 2014

Commended National Merit Scholar: 2014

Indiana Math League School Champion (monthly), 2014

Inducted into Seymour Middle School Math Hall of Fame, 2014

ICTM Comprehensive Mathematics Site Champion: 2014

DAR Good Citizen Award: 2015

IUPUI Herbert W. Adams Presidential Scholarship: 2015

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Jordan Morey is sports editor at The (Seymour) Tribune. He can be reached at jmorey@tribtown.com or 812-523-7069.