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Track and field remains dominant ahead of championship meets

by Zach Wagner - Lifestyles Editor
Wed, Feb 26th 2020 12:00 pm
Senior Taj Shaw jumps over the bar during the high jump event. Shaw won the triple jump event at the Nazareth Tune-Up Invitational on Friday, Feb. 21.
Senior Taj Shaw jumps over the bar during the high jump event. Shaw won the triple jump event at the Nazareth Tune-Up Invitational on Friday, Feb. 21.

The College at Brockport men’s and women’s indoor track squads traveled to nearby Nazareth College this past weekend for the Nazareth Tune-Up Invitational. This meet was the last chance for the athletes to improve their times before the SUNYAC championships on Friday, Feb. 28.

Junior Olivier Kothor was able to put on a strong performance in the 60-meter dash, as he took first with a time of 7.03. Kothor was also able to put up a season-best time earlier in the meet, running 7.00 in the prelims. His impressive outing continued when he doubled back, running another season-best time in the 200-meter dash with a mark of 22.43, placing first.

During the long season, Kothor has relied on his solid mindset to keep him focused on continuing to consistently run solid races. Through a long and hard indoor season, it is easy to lose touch with a positive mindset, but Kothor keeps his head held high in order to be the best athlete he can possibly be.

“For me, I just focus on keeping a sound mindset despite having days where I struggle more than others,” Kothor said. “I keep my head up and take every practice as a new opportunity to become a better athlete.”

Moving into championship season, Kothor looks to carry this positive mindset with him the rest of the way, doing things off and on the track to keep seeing success within his races.

“My mindset now is focused around running my best races,” Kothor said. “I need to run the most effectively I can and that means doing what I need to do off and on the track.”

As for the rest of the nationally-ranked men’s team, they came through as always, putting together a string of dominant performances in many other events. The nation’s top shot put competitor, senior Tony DeYoung, grabbed another first place finish, throwing a distance of 17.27 meters. Junior Egypt Page also delivered again, placing first in the long jump with a mark of 7.27 meters. On the other side of the sand, senior Taj Shaw won the triple jump reaching 14.11 meters.

On the women’s side of action, they continued to show why they are a force to be reckoned with as they delivered some heavy-hitting performances gearing up for the tough battle ahead in SUNYAC competition. Junior Alayna Fredenburg has been steadily climbing the national qualifying rankings in the weight throw over the past few weeks. In this week’s past meet, she was able to put up a personal-best throw, hitting a mark of 16.41 meters. That throw placed her first in the event.

“Setting a new personal-best is exciting and comforting for me because it is a reward for the hard work that myself and my teammates do every day and it reminds us that there is more to come,” Frendenburg said.

Frendenburg is focusing on improving her personal-best in the upcoming SUNYAC and regional meets, with an opportunity to qualify for the national meet to continue the successful run she has been on this season.

“I hope to PR at SUNYACs at home this coming weekend and again at regionals so I can qualify for indoor nationals,” Frendenburg said. “This season has already been filled with huge accomplishments for me, so I am excited to see how I finish out.”

For the rest of the women’s side, senior Maya Reina continues to dominate regular season action, grabbing another first place finish in pole vault. Sophomore thrower Sarah Crockett surpassed 13.00 meters in shot put for the first time in her career, nabbing first place in the event.

Moving forward, both sides are eager to get after it at the SUNYAC meet next time out. The hard work and preparation throughout the season is certainly showing and anything less than first in the SUNYAC meet would appear to be a disappointment for each side. For a good portion of the athletes, the season is far from over as they hold tight during this part of the season and hope for a peak in performance in time for nationals.  

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Taken by Vincent Croce:
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