The women’s track team looks to advance to state in the upcoming season

Susie You, staff reporter

The women’s track team is entering the 2016 season with multiple goals in mind, according to Head Coach Fred Kocian. Kocian acknowledges that the team’s ultimate goal is to qualify and place in state. However, the coaching staff believe the work and dedication the women put forth into the season outweighs state goals.

“A goal for us is [for] everybody to know that the hard work pays off and to see people get better as the season goes on,” Kocian said.

Kocian already senses the eagerness and anxiousness from the women on the impending season. However, according to Kocian, in order to be successful, the women must overcome their difficulties of putting in the time and effort.

“Sometimes people want to get better right away, or have to be the best, so [being] patient with themselves is probably the toughest thing [they have to deal with],” Kocian said.

According to Meaghan Fastert, discus and shot put coach, being a fast runner isn’t the only thing one needs to be successful in track, but being mentally strong will also contribute to one’s successes.

“Running is a huge mental sport, it’s a mental game, so it’s how strong you are in your head [reflects] on how successful you are going to be,” Fastert said.

Even though the season has not yet begun, sophomore Emily Noone is already training and is anxious about the upcoming season. Noone believes that her successful season in the fall as a cross country runner will help her improve, and hopefully bring her back to state for the track season.

“This year in cross country I’ve done much better than my last season, so I think that’s really going to help me drop my times for the track season,” Noone said. “Since I’m doing so much better for cross country it will help me in the long runs for track.”

Senior Rose O’Grady has high hopes for being able to participate throughout the entire season.

“I [definitely] want to stay injury-free and improve my times,” O’Grady said.

According to Fastert, last season was a huge success, not only because of all the awards and recognition they received, but the women also improved tremendously as well.

“The previous season went really well,” Fastert said.  “A lot of my throwers PR’ed throughout the season. They did a really good job with continuing to lift and get better.”

O’Grady also believes that last season went well, even though she was injured and incapable of running for most of the season. O’Grady suffered shin splints, and according to O’Grady, although it was a major step back on the team, she believed that the women certainly ran to their top potential and ultimately had a successful season.

“My teammates did really well last season and I know they’ll do well again this year,” O’Grady said.

For Noone, her motivation to work hard comes from her coaches encouraging words and actions. Noone contributes her success last season to just that.

“[Kocian] told me that I’m really doing well and I could really go far with running,” Noone said. “That really stuck in my mind, and keeping that in mind keeps me going to think if I just keep working harder I could keep going farther and farther with this.”

 Fastert shares a memory she had with last year’s freshman.

“My throwers are one of the most unique group of throwers you’ll ever meet. [Once] they were playing tag in the middle of field, and almost ran into a runner that was actually racing. The funny and goofy stories that I have about them, I’ve always taken from each track season.”

Fastert loves to tell her runners and discus throwers uplifting words to brighten their moods, and encourage them to run and try their best for the meets.

“[They should know to be] proud of themselves,” Fastert said. “To walk away from their season feeling like they did something, they did something well.”