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2020 Boys Track Article


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It has been one month ago today as I type this that I last had contact with the 40 members of this year’s Southeast Valley’s boys’ track team.  As coaches we left practice that day extremely excited as to what the future of the upcoming season looked like as we had just finished our 4th week of practice.  When we left that night, we knew Governor Reynolds had announced that schools would remain open, but two days later on Sunday evening that changed.

I’ve thought about writing this article several times in the past four weeks, but first I thought we might start again on April 15th so I would just wait until then. Then came the announcement last week that it would be April 30th. Currently, there is slim hope that we might get to start on May 1st and be able to have a shortened track and field season yet thanks to the IAHSAA and IGHSAU for coming up with a plan.  As I watch other states and Des Moines cancel their spring sports seasons, I’ve decided it is time to acknowledge the hard work this year’s team put in for a month and possibly dream about what could have been, in case we don’t go back.

The hardest part if we don’t have the season this year will be the loss of our six seniors.  Four of those seniors have been part of this program for four years; Chase Swieter, Carter Lane, Lucas Samuelson and Lincoln Clay.  The other two seniors are Brandon Nott and Zane Geis.  

Chase and Carter both returned this year after making appearances at the state meet last year on relays.  Never in my wildest dreams did I ever believe that something like the current situation would possibly be the reason that these two wouldn’t get a chance to get back to state.  But it definitely drives home the point that you never take anything for granted or think there will be a next time.

Lucas Samuelson and Lincoln Clay were both throwers, mainly the shot put.  The improvement that they have made over the years and not being able to see then improve more this year will be disappointing.  What we saw though in the few weeks we have gotten to work with them was the leadership they showed teaching a group of freshman that had only begun their careers throwing shot put and discus.  They are also a pair that has always given us a 100% in everything you asked of them.  

This is Brandon Nott’s second year of track and Zane’s first year.  Last year Brandon in his first year was willing to try almost any event to get a chance to compete in a meet and while Zane may not get a chance to ever compete in a high school meet, I had the opportunity to watch him improve the two years he was out for cross country.

The strange part is, I don’t know if I will get a chance to see these seniors one last time before they move on and follow their plans for the future.  In case I don’t, I want all of you to remember, it’s not going to be about what you didn’t get to do this year, but what type of person you become and how you treat other people.  I know all six of you seniors have your strengths and all of you will move on in your own ways and accomplish many things and someday this will all be a distant memory that you reminisce about with classmates and tell your children about.  

The good news is that of the remaining 34 athletes on this year’s team, 8 of them are juniors, 13 are sophomores and 13 are freshmen. Most of those 21 juniors and sophomores have seen a lot of varsity races in their short career and the 13 freshmen were showing a lot of promise.   Whether it's this year that I get to write more articles and talk about these underclassmen or whether it's next year that I have to wait and write articles about them, I’m excited about what the future holds. If the season doesn’t happen this year, it won’t be about what we failed to have accomplished this year, but how we rise up and succeed next year. 

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