This spring’s track season saw great success after diversifying its events and excelling in meets. Archer track’s successful results clearly reflect the team’s remarkable skill and energy.
Even though Archer does not have a track, the varsity track team still managed to have satisfying and strengthening workouts for both the middle school and high school teams. Practices included the whole campus: the team warmed up around the building and parking lot before practicing sprints and strided along the fence of the softball field. The team also stretched on the sport court before diving into speed work.
Sometimes, runners shared the UCLA-bound bus with the swim team and used the track at Drake Stadium, adding a new challenge to the weekly work outs. These training sessions helped the team immensely by providing a more realistic competition setting and preparing them for meets at West LA College and Santa Monica College.
This year, Archer added in hurdles to their track and field line-up. Practice hurdles for the 300 meter hurtling race are set up on the grass. Runners of multiple grades, including freshman Ari Brown ’17, senior Jessica Cranston ’13, and sophomore Chloe Hallinan ’15, have been competing in hurdles. During the team’s first league meet, Jessica Cranston was first place in the 300 meter hurdle race, foreshadowing many more hurdle victories for the team in the future.
Cranston earned first place in both the 110 meter hurdles with a time of 17.31 and the 300 meter hurdles with a time of 49.17, earning her two CIF qualifications. She was also awarded MVP of the delphic league for all of her track victories.
In addition to the hurdles, this year’s team also trained for the discus and the shot put, two new field events for Archer’s track program. Coach Carpenter and Coach McIntosh joined the team, giving crucial guidance for success in these two specialized, challenging events.
These field events also saw success in Delphic League finals. Discus thrower Nahal Shakib ’13 threw a personal record, Yasmeen Namazie ’15 earned second place in discus in the league, Marcela Riddick ’16 finished in fourth place in long jump, and Jasmine Chen ’13 earned second place in shot put.
In addition to her fourth place league long jump victory, Riddick says of that one of her most memorable experiences “was when Maia, Jess, ShaVonne, and I won the 4 by 200 meter relay. We absolutely killed it and we were all super excited and hugging.”
Maia Barnett ’14 came in second place for the girl’s 100 meter race and 200 meter race during the first league meet. Barnett enjoyed her season and notes that one of her favorite track moments was “seeing Jess fall on the hurdle.” The camaraderie of the team allowed them to have lots of laughs. She says, “it was priceless!”
This year’s track team in particular illustrates the duality of the sport: it is both an individual and a team sport that pushes athletes to connect with themselves and one another. The relay races in track take a tremendous amount of meticulous planning and practice to transition from one runner to another, especially with baton trade-offs.
The Archer track team had multiple relay victories this season. The 4×400 relay team won first place in the first league meet of 2013, and the Archer 4×100 relay team came in third place. Yasmeen Namazie ’15 explains the infamous 4×400 race for the Oracle, describing the feeling of “that last one hundred meters when you feel like the finish line is getting farther and farther away.”
At finals, the 4×400 meter relay team earned 1st place, qualifying for CIF. The team of senior Geffen Treiman ’13, sophomore Yasmeen Namazie ’15, senior Jessica Cranston ’13, and junior Maia Barnett ’14 ran in 4:21, leaving the rest of the competitors in the dust.
This year’s competitions, for league titles or otherwise, were exciting and fun for the whole team because they combined the exhilaration of one’s own races with the excitement of watching the rest of the meet.
New track runner Becca Samuelson ‘13 enjoyed meets because they allowed the team “to spend time with each other before and after races” and “get excited not just about our own races, but also those of our teammates.” She describes the vibe of meets as “nerve-racking” and the success “inspirational” and “worth all of the team’s hard work.”
This track season’s CIF qualifications and personal records have the Archer athletic community already excited to see what victories next year will bring.
Article written by Chloe Hallinan ’15; edited by Becca Samuelson ’13.
Featured Image Source: Archer Athletics