Track starts the season well but has begun to feel the pressure in their later meets.
By Phillip Karlberg
Despite the loss of momentum that seemed to take place for the track team after its initial success, the Spartans are beginning to regain their momentum with success at both the Englewood and TJ meets.
The Guys’ team showed impressive strength at Elizabeth. Jared Lewis took first in the 100-meter race and Efrum Woldu took 2nd in the 400-meter race. In the discus, Vince Crespin took 9th and Andrew Brown took 10th out of about 50 competitors. The boys 4×100 relay team took first in their event and their 4×800 relay team took third.
The girls did not do quite as well in their first meet, taking 11th overall. They did take first in the 800-meter relay but again were only somewhat successful in their second meet, taking 19th place out of 22 teams.
The program still is optimistic about the year. “The season has been going very well for us this year, out of the four years I have been here, this is the best line-up I’ve seen. We have a good chance to take a lot of runners to state,” Senior runner Ben Gilliland commented.
“The season has been going alright, it’s been tough because we have had some problems with illness and grades. It has been going very well for those who have been working hard to compete,” explained Junior Vince Crespin. Crespin, Mariah McCrae and Andrea Qualls all have struggled with sickness during the season. Corina Desroses was held up early in the season because of the Chicago musical and still others were gone around Spring Break.
In the more recent meets, TJ has gained momentum. At the Englewood meet, the boys took 2nd place behind Ralston Valley, a team ranked 2nd in 4A. The girls also did very well and took 5th. “Many of the athletes set a new personal best in the Englewood meet, and they have been progressively improving,” Crespin said, reflecting Track Coach Dave Cohen’s remark, “Track is a progression sport, and for most, their peak performances will not begin to occur until late April and early May.”
The state meet is the mark the entire team is working towards. “I consider the most important goal of the season to improve athletes in preparation for State, the whole season works up to the Liberty Bell meet and State,” said Crespin. State is where everything is on the line and the athletes have one last chance to show what they are made of.
Many of the TJ athletes look like they could be serious contenders in the larger upcoming meets. The season stalled somewhat, partly because of sickness and grade issues, but recently the program has begun to build back its momentum and hopefully will continue this trend all the way to state.