PAT ZECH

Track

Class of 2009

 PAT ZECH Pat Zech’s legacy is nearly 60 feet long; that’s the shot put distance he almost cleared in his senior year at Antioch High in 1974. His 59’ 10 1/2” throw still stands in the Panther record book. Pat’s fantastic shot toss came right when it counted - during the California Interscholastic Federation finals, making him only the second athlete from Antioch to ever place in the top five in the state in the 56-year history of the CIF meet and the first Panther to make state finals twice. In June 1974, Pat was named to the All Nor-Cal Track and Field team - the only DVAL athlete chosen - and was voted as East Bay Athlete of the Year, picked by sportswriters and coaches. Pat was Outstanding Athlete of the 1974 AHS Invitational and the 1973-74 Fitzpatrick Chevrolet Super Sport of the Year. Pat became the 1974 Antioch High Athlete of the Year and was named a high school All-America in football, as well as being recognized by Who’s Who of High School Athletes nationwide. Local sportswriter Rich Waters said Pat was “the greatest athlete to come out of Antioch High in many years.” Besides his record-setting shot put performance, he placed sixth in California in wrestling and won several other competitions in the heavyweight division. Pat was All-DVAL, All-East Bay and All-Nor Cal in football. He turned down a full-ride offer to play at Notre Dame and accepted a football scholarship to the University of Arizona. Pat’s prowess didn’t end in the gym or on the field, he also carried a 3.6 GPA and was president of the Panther Block A Society. Pat was named California’s Outstanding Recruit for the “Devil Pups” program, a nonprofit organization that trains 600 high school students each year in Camp Pendleton, Calif. He lettered in football his freshman and sophomore years of college at UA, but was permanently sidelined with ankle and knee injuries in spring training.