On an overcast afternoon, the men’s and women’s track and field teams broke a sweat preparing for their first meet of the 2015 season.
Once again headed by Armand Crespo, who’s served as head track coach in the 2008-2010 seasons, the teams consists primarily of new talent. Staying on the safe side of his prediction, Crespo has his eye on a few diamonds in the rough that may be contenders at the state championships.
“It’s really hard to say. There’s some particular athletes out here that have potential to be qualified for the state championships, to score points for us,” he said.
“But the possibility of that happening depends on a bunch of different factors that come into consideration so if, and we’ll say, if these particular student athletes are prepared academically and ready to compete, and it’s the right time for them, then yes, we will be successful,” he added.
Building off the fact that a majority of the track athletes are new to the program, practices currently emphasize the basics in order to set a coherent foundation across the teams. In addition to stressing the importance of warming up, and doing so correctly, Crespo strives for cohesion between each athlete.
“You want to make sure everyone’s with the group, that way we move together as a unit and everybody understands why we’re doing those things,” he said.
While Crespo may have been a bit reserved in his season prediction, some of his athletes are eager to start the season off with a bang.
Anthony Carter, better known as AC among his fellow athletes, competes in the long and triple jumps. He said triple jump is his favorite jump event, though he’s been working on sprints as well. After an injury left him less than content with his results last season, Carter is setting the bar high for himself going into this season.
“I definitely feel pretty good this season, compared to last season. [I] sprained my ankle really bad, so I want to be the best triple jumper,” he said.
In order to live up to his expectations, Carter has put in his greatest efforts in every workout since the harsh summer days.
“I came every day in the summer, since June, so June to now I’ve been jumping, sprinting … hot days, triple degree heat, terrible, but it’s all going to pay off, I’m happy about it.”
Similarly, Danielle Curry feels just as confident in herself for the upcoming season. Excelling in the 100 and 200 meter sprints as well as the 4×100 meter relay, Curry believes the last season she had off from competing will benefit her moving forward. Although she feels strong at the moment, Curry feels the need to ramp up the intensity of her workouts.
“It’s been a challenge, oh my goodness it’s been a challenge,” she said about her training up to this point. “I’ve been working really hard, ‘no pain, no gain’ you know … with the work I’ve put in I know I need to put in a lot more to get to the standards I need to, but I do know that it should be a great season.”
The Lancers start off their season with the South Coast Conference Opener on Feb. 6 at Mt. San Antonio College.