Track hurdles over unforeseen obstacles

The+construction+of+a+new+track+has+limited+the+consistency+of+use+of+usual+practice+space+for+the+Redhawks.+However%2C+for+some%2C+this+added+challenge+comes+as+an+advantage.

Michael Martin

The construction of a new track has limited the consistency of use of usual practice space for the Redhawks. However, for some, this added challenge comes as an advantage.

Harley Classe, Sports Editor

The close of the 2022 school year brings more to campus than a start to summer. The campus will be receiving new paint, carpet, as well as a new track before students return in the fall. However, for some, this means more than a fresh start.

For the track team, practicing between meets on their run to state has been especially challenging as the athletes have had no track to call home.

“We either practice at Emerson or Vandy, depending on where our coach decides,” senior Sydney Bishop said. “I won’t be here for the new track so I’m kind of sad about that, but I’m looking forward to having a really good showing at state with everything we’ve been through this year with our track,” Bishop said. “I can’t wait to run on a track that doesn’t give us shin splints.”

While the athletes roam from track to track, coach Khera Vay has been pushing the team to see the obstacle from a new perspective.

“One of the things we discussed a lot this season was handling adversity,” Vay said. “We went into the season knowing that there was a strong possibility that Liberty track usage would be limited due issues in the surface and/or ​reconstruction. I think this group of girls understands that a ‘home’ isn’t about a place but the people that are around you. The girls have been consistent for each other and that is what has held them together and allowed this goal to come to fruition.”

Bishop has put this new mindset into action.

“I think it helps us because every track is different exchange zone wise,” she said. “Some tracks have little triangles, some tracks have big triangles, and it actually affects what the exchange zone is, so I think being able to practice at different tracks every week really helps us get accustomed to having our steps being moved and everything like that. Especially learning how to go off of different marks has really helped us.”

Vay believes the athlete’s ability to perform well regardless of adequate practice space speaks to their determination.

“I think the girls’ ability to be flexible and handle the changes in practice place and schedule is a testament to what this season means to each of them,” Vay said. “When presented with a challenge they always seem to accept it and trust the process. I believe that the changes in environments and track allowed the girls to understand that no matter where they are they can perform.”