Girls track starts season off strong


Brianna Mosinski

Ashanti LeFlore, senior, runs the 55m race at the Lincoln-Way East meet where she finished in first place.

The girls track team are lacing up their spikes for the season. They have two meets under their belt, and a pole vaulting school record has already been broken at 12’ (3.66m).
“I was planning to break a school record. I definitely didn’t expect it this early in the season or that specific meet but knew that if I performed like I had practiced, it was something I could do at some point,” senior Tessani Foster said.
Record breaking moments can be thrilling and crazy to think about.
“I really couldn’t believe it. It’s rare as a pole vaulter to go to a meet and have everything feel perfect and in your favor but it was. I was running well, my technique was there, and I had a lot of momentum,” Foster said. “It was shocking and I couldn’t have been happier. I was especially lucky to have my family and team there giving me corrections, cheering me on, and supporting me.”
Head coach Tonya Landfair has encouraged all the athletes to be working towards goals and to stay focused.
“Set goals and be open to the process and commitment it takes to reach your goals,” Landfair said. “Today with the speed of technology we see that student athletes at times are disconnected with the time discipline it takes to improve performance in sports.”
Trying new things and getting stronger are part of many athletes’ goals this season.
“I want to throw over 30 for the shot put,” junior Sophia Rodriguez said.
Competing at state is also one of many athletes goals this season.
“I would love to go to state this year and plan on it! I’m hoping for a new personal record of around 12’ 6” by the time state comes around,” Foster said.
Motivation is important in any sport to help strive through setbacks and fears, and it teaches perseverance.
“I motivate the team to push themselves and do their best by setting realistic expectations and the method and time put towards planning,” Landfair said. “I was fortunate to have highly knowledgeable coaches and compete at a high level, so I am able to pass along that knowledge and experience.”
Change seems challenging at first, but it can be a way of improving and getting stronger.
“Because I’ve been so open to change and open to influence and coaching and just corrections in general, I think it’s been a big factor in my improving,” Foster said.
Despite the challenge that is the sport, there are many exhilarating parts even when it seems hard.
“The long runs are really nice. Not too fast paced and you run along with someone and have nice conversations,” Rodriguez said.
One of the hardest things about keeping up with athletics is finding ways to improve; even when it’s difficult.
“I do what I can, if I come into practice and I’m not feeling great then I just try and do more strength things and just get stronger either mentally or physically in any way I can,” Foster said.
The coaches have been pleased with the indoor season so far.
“One of the best parts about coaching is seeing athletes grow and witnessing their accomplishments,” Landfair said.
Indoor season is designed to have an impact on outdoor season.
“It’s essential to being competitive for outdoor,” Landfair said. “Without preparation, there can not be performance.”
Indoor season ends on April 3 and outdoor season begins immediately on April 4.
The next meet is Saturday at Argo at 9 a.m.