Special Olympics Track and Field Returns

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Aubree Peterson-Spanard, Writer

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On April 11th the six members of Obama’s Special Olympics Track and Field team walked onto the track ready to get their time trials and kick some butt. Now, just four weeks later, they are preparing to go to the championship meet and win first place. But how did we get this far?

Well, for starters, we got a new head coach. Ms. Tyler, one of our special-ed teachers, volunteered to take over the position from counselor Mrs. Whealdon, who was finding her schedule to be getting busier and busier. It was a good choice! Our practices included running laps around the halls, throwing shot-puts and mini-javelins, jumping, and lots of stretching. Ms. Tyler emphasized the importance of pacing yourself and staying hydrated, both of which all of us had to work on.

Secondly, we strategized and played to each other’s strengths. For example, our team’s first ever relay team consisted of senior Makyya Jones and sophomores Abigail (Abby) Cardyn, Javon, and yours truly. We looked at each of our speeds when running around the track to see if we were better suited to running the curved and/or the straight sections of the relay. In the end, we decided on the order above. How well did it work, you may ask? It worked fantastically, seeing as we got 1st place for both meets, and second or third for the two time trial sessions. And each of us has been within the top three places for each of our individual events, both on the track and on the field. Our other two members, seniors Janae Bandy and Nyasha, did well as well. Honestly, I don’t think we’ve done this well before! “We actually have a chance at beating all the other schools,” said Abby after our last meet on Wednesday. “Now all we have to do is beat them at the championship!”

The championship meet will be held on May 9th at Oliver City High School’s track, where all the meets and time trial sessions took place, and will be starting at 2pm. “To make sure we have time to get there and warm up, we’ll have to leave around 12:30,” Ms. Tyler says. But just because we start before school is over doesn’t mean that you can’t come watch us win! There will be free food, like popcorn and hotdogs, and refreshments. Plus, we could always use more support and motivation! And if anyone is interested, we would love to get some more members, especially since half the team are seniors and will be returning for next year’s season. So come join us next Wednesday at our championship, and hopefully we’ll see you for the next season after that!

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