Runners, jumpers, throwers — on track


Sebastian Becerra

Freshmen track runners at daily practice, Jan. 31.

Tristin Tuialuuluu, Reporter

Track started mid-January and athletes on campus are facing 10 meets throughout the season. The team’s new head coach Ramon Benavidez is eager to continue the winning tradition that was built under ex-head coach Orlando Hairston who left for a position with the Socorro Independent School District.

Before Benavidez became the head coach he was the hurdles coach on campus

“I love being on the track, I am able to motivate the athletes by having them look inside. There’s a champion in everyone it is just a matter of bringing it out,” head coach Ramon Benavidez said.

Track and field includes running and sprinting events. Running has different events including relays, hurdles, long distance and short distance. Sprinting is different and has different distances such as 100m, 200m and the 400m dash.

“I feel confident in myself and my team. I know we’ll do great, we have all been working on perfecting our techniques and on getting our relay times as short as possible,” runner George Morales said. “The thing that helps us the most when it comes to shortening our time is our consistency in practice.”

Pole vaulting, high jump, triple jump and long jump are part of the field events that require immense leg strength, powerful upper body strength and speed. Pole vaulting is an event in which a person has to use a pole to vault vertically and clear a height that starts at 9 feet, but can be higher depending on the previous opponent’s vault.

“We have all been working hard this off season and I think that our forms are getting better because we’re constantly practicing our approaches and take-off’s which are probably the hardest things to do and I believe that we will dominate the district this year,” pole vaulter Ashley Gandara said.

The high jump is similar to the pole vault but athletes do not use a pole. The triple jump and long jump are events in which an athlete has to run down a runway and jump horizontally onto ground-level, their distance is their score.

 “The jumping part is very competitive and that is why we have to practice every day, most of us join summer track and it helps us get the upper hand when it comes to regular season because we’ve been working all summer,” jumper Angel Estrada said.

Field events include throwing and it involves a combination of strength, power and footwork. Throwers use different techniques to launch the ball or discus as far as possible while following the rules. If the athlete steps out of the throwing area before the projectile has landed, the throw is not counted.

“Getting the techniques right is probably the hardest thing to do and that is what most people in this sport lack, Coach Chacon has different workouts for us that really help us improve our skills,” thrower Omar Morales said.

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