Track and Field began their season on Feb. 18. Head Coach Amelia Mathis and Assistant Coach Riley Barrie will help these athletes accomplish their goals this season.
Previous Head Coach Kim Smith recruited Barrie into the Track and Field coaching staff this season. Barrie works with USC Athletics and will now be bringing his experience to the Archer community alongside coach Amelia Mathis.
“Most people think that Track is an individual sport, but every girl is fighting to win for her team,” explains Mathis. With various events to participate in, all types of athletes are welcome to join. Runners can participate in distance, sprint, hurtle and relay races. For those interested in field events, other options include discus, shot put, high jump, long jump and javelin.
Middle distance runner Yasmeen Namazie ’15 tells the Oracle, “I enjoy how it’s an individual sport, but at meets you all cheer for one another. It’s a great experience. I also love running because its such a great way to let loose. It’s always been a passion of mine and it helps me with my agility in soccer.”
Senior Maia Barnet ’14, also a returning athlete, shares that she looks forward to doing well this season in the Liberty League and has a personal goal of improving her times in the 100 meter run, the 200 meter run, the 4 by 1 relay, and the 4 by 4 relay.
Coach Mathis says, “The only challenge we had last year was not having enough space, but we make it work. In the spring the back field looks like a circus. There is absolutely no space. Both US Softball and MS Softball are out there along with a huge fence that divides the field in half; however, the fence allows us to have a curve and lanes. And that’s what makes us very competitive—we push each other at training with the little space that we do have.”
Last season went well for the Archer track team, with girls setting new records in a variety of events. Upper School finished third in the Delphic League and Middle School finished third in the Pacific Basin League.
Freshman Leyla Namazie ’17 shares her thoughts as she makes the jump to high school Track and Field this year: “I enjoy the meets because your whole entire team cheers you on, and there are so many different events to watch.”
Returner Marcela Riddick ’16 adds, “Track is my main sport of the three that I do during the year. So all year long, I am just waiting to put my spikes on and get on the track. I love that I can be part of a team but focus on self-growth.”
Practice is held from 3:15-4:45 p.m. on training days. Varsity athletes train Monday through Friday. Middle School trains Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. League meets are at Birmingham High on various Wednesdays for Varsity and West LA College on various Tuesdays for Middle School.
These Archer athletes are highly motivated and were excited to share their goals. Each individual shows their uniqueness in the events they do. Many great athletes return this season along with promising new ones. Old records are bound to be broken and new ones set. If you are interested, Coach Mathis encourages you to contact her.
Featured Image: Archer track stretching. Photographer: Ilene Gonzales ’16