MUNSTER | Darla Fox stood at the fence at Munster High School on Tuesday night shivering a bit. She was there for the Northwest Crossroads Conference boys track meet.
She was there, like all the other proud parents assembled, to cheer on her son, Kankakee Valley senior Derick Tesh.
Tesh competed in both hurdle events along with the high jump.
Fox laughed about when he started in middle school and her watching him run as fast as he could before jumping several fences on top of the asphalt.
"Derick has never been a video game kid," Fox said. "When he started (hurdles) in middle school, I couldn't even watch."
A couple minutes later, the 300 hurdles began. Tesh took off and tripped on the second hurdle. He crashed down, rolled and scraped on the asphalt as the other athletes surged ahead.
Tesh got up and took off again. He finished second in the fast heat of the NCC.
"The one thing I can say about my son, he doesn't like to lose," Fox said.
Tesh laughed when he heard that line and nodded his head in 100 percent agreement. He remembered a moment from his youth.
"I played travel soccer," he said. "If we lost, my mom would tell my sisters not to talk to me on the drive home. I wouldn't talk to anyone."
In or out of season, Tesh is an avid outdoorsman. Hunting. Fishing. Dirt biking. Four wheeling. Racing motor cross. Skiing in Michigan with friends. All of these things occur with this lad 24/7.
"One of his sisters called the other day and didn't know where Derick was," Fox said. "I laughed. I said, 'The sun's still out. Don't worry. He'll come home when it sets.'"
Tesh's high school track career is close to setting. He has advanced to regionals the past two seasons. He wants to get to the state meet in Bloomington.
His best time in the 110 hurdles this season is 15.2. He won his first NCC title Tuesday in 15.68.
His best time in the 300 hurdles is 40.6 this season. He finished second at the NCC meet in 42.80, after falling.
His best number in the high jump is 6 feet, 4 inches. He finished fifth at the NCC at 5-8, with cuts and scrapes all over him.
"He's the most naturally gifted athlete we have," said acting head coach Matthew Jackson, who was filling in for coach Dan Roberts on Tuesday. Roberts was injured last week.
"We could put him in almost anything," Jackson said. "I wish we could put him in every event but we can't. It's been a pleasure to watch him grow this year."
Tesh has had several colleges looking to use his skill in track in the coming years. He visited Wabash and had an opportunity. But Wabash doesn't have classrooms outdoors.
He hasn't made up his mind yet. A job in landscaping or construction is also a possibility.
"I wish I had a dollar for every time he's come into the house asking for hot dogs because he's going camping," Fox said.
With the postseason coming and the days getting longer, there is only one thing Tesh wants besides time in the woods. He wants to get out of sectionals like before, then, get out of regionals like never before.
"It's about time," Tesh said. "That's what I want."