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Edie Boyer

Hockey's loss is track and field's gain in the case of Edie Boyer. In 1995 the Minnesotan won her first national championship in the discus, after finishing no higher than 6th in previous years. Still, she was no stranger to winning a national title. From 1981 to 1983, Boyer played hockey with the Minnesota Checkers, who won the national senior title in each of those seasons.

Hockey was just one of the sports that the athletic Boyer tried. One of six children in her "sports-oriented" family, she also played soccer, basketball and softball during those high school years. She dabbled with track as a sophomore, making it to the state championships in the high jump, shot and discus. Of her high jump best of 5-6, she clarifies, "That was over 40 pounds ago."

Boyer earned a basketball scholarship to North Dakota State, where she played power forward. "Sometimes my hockey style carried over into basketball," she admits. The Bison made it to the NCAA Division II Final Four in 1986 and '88, and into the quarterfinals in 1987. As a senior, she got the urge to try track again.

"Early on, I was not a big fan of track and field," she explains. "As a matter of fact, I hated it because I had preferred playing in team sports. During my fourth year in college, I gave it another shot." The results promised more; she threw the shot 48-7.5 and placed 3rd in the NCAA II nationals.

"Upon graduation, I hooked up with Colin and Lynne Anderson and learned the shot and discus techniques. I became inspired when the results began to pay off. After learning so much from the Andersons, I realized then and there that field (and track) had been my best sport all along."

As Boyer's discus prospects improved, she re-evaluated the shot. "Over time," she says, "it was getting harder to find time and energy to be an elitist in both events while working a demanding 40 hour a week job. Realistically, my chances were greater to reach the top in the discus event as opposed to the shot, where I had a long ways to go. Although I loved doing the shot, it made sense to concentrate on the discus."

That was 1991. The next year, Boyer broke through to 194-9 in the discus. On the day of the Olympic Trials, that mark would have given her 3rd. It didn't happen. She whirled the platter out to 179-0 in New Orleans, finishing 7th.

Boyer re-emerged in 1994, throwing 186-10 and ranking No. 7 in the nation. Then last year she made her big improvement, getting the right throw at the right time. A heave of 205-4 on her second attempt in Sacramento brought her the national discus title.

"In retrospect, since I was able to achieve all of the goals except one (making finals at World Championships), I can't say that I was disappointed with the way the season went," says Boyer. "This was the critical year in preparation for the '96 Games, meaning that it gave me a good indication as to where I stand in the U.S. I knew I had to get stronger in order to throw farther and place in the top three at U.S. nationals. Yeah, I guess you can say that I was, for the most part, happy. Nevertheless, there's always room for improvement."

Boyer has set her sights on doing better internationally in 1996, for the discus is a Grand Prix event. "I'm doing a lot of drill work with Lynne, trying to correct my flaws in my technique," she explains. "It's been challenging but if fixed, it means capability to throw farther."

In the meantime, unlike many top athletes, Boyer works a 40-hour week for a public utility as a quality assurance engineer. She spends most of her time dealing with the interpretation of federal regulations and corporate requirements for nuclear power plants. "If you look real closely, you may notice that my hair glows in the dark," she jokes.

When she was 10 months old, Boyer lost 80% of the hearing in both ears during a bout with meningitis. As a result, she wears hearing aids. She wears a helmet also, but generally only when she's touring on one of her motorcycles. She owns two, a 1982 Yamaha Seca Turbo and 1988 Honda Goldwing that she calls "a mother of all mothers."

As if her life isn't full enough, Boyer burns the rest of her free time woodworking (Adirondack chairs are a favorite project) and surfing the Internet on her computer. In a fun twist for both her and the author, the interview that fueled this feature took place via e-mail. Boyer's e-mail address was based on her 1995 goal for the discus. "Having accomplished that," she explains, "I've been meaning to change it to reflect the new goals for '96. Enough said."

Career Stats

Born February 21, 1966 in Minneapolis, Mn

6-0/1.83m	185/84kg

Hastings HS (Mn) '84

North Dakota State '89

PRs (outdoor):

SP--51-11/15.82 '90

DT--205-4/62.58 '95

PR (indoor):

SP--51-7.75/15.74 '91

Major Meets (DT unless noted):

1989	3)NCAA II SP

1990	16q)USA

1991	7)USA

1992	7)Olympic Trials

1994	6)USA

1995	1)USA

1995	25q)World Championships

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