Kiera Suh ’22 leaped her way towards a new Upper girl’s record in the triple jump with a 36’ 04.75 attempt, becoming the second girl at Andover to break 36 feet in the event and assisting Andover Girls Track in its dominant 113-31 season opener victory against Deerfield on Saturday.
During the meet, the team was accompanied by a crowd of spectators cheering and providing support from the sidelines. After missing last year’s season due to Covid-19, the typical nerves of a track meet were suppressed by the excitement to be back on the track competing, according to Co-Captain Myra Bhathena ’22.
Bhathena said, “Most track meets [are full of] a lot of nerves and excitement. There’s just so much going on, and everyone is excited to be there but also just nervous for their events. There’s sometimes stress, but I think yesterday, there was very little nerves and just so much pure excitement to be back on the track. People weren’t thinking about what place we were going to get or how we were going to do, they were just so excited to be able to be there. So it was such a great atmosphere, and we’re looking forward to maintaining that type of spirit.”
Although many distance runners felt strained after participating in multiple events, Andover’s satisfaction in its results outweighed its fatigue, according to Natasha Muromcew ’22.
Muromcew said, “Most of the distance athletes had to double up on their events, meaning everyone did two events. And for distance, that can be very physically and mentally taxing. It was a hard day for most people, but I think everyone is really happy with how they did.”
Having to adapt to new meet restrictions due to Covid-19, the team faced challenges with the timings of events, according to Esme Huh ’22.
“The time thing was definitely a big one. I know that Charlotte Whitehurst [’22] and I both ran the same events, and we just felt like we would get off from one event and go right into our preparation for the next one. And I think you will hear that echoed throughout all the sprints too because everything was very close together. Then I know it was also a little bit windy, so that was hard for some people, but it was a nice day, the weather really came through for us,” said Huh.
Coming up victorious in nearly all of the meet’s events, the team saw notable efforts from multiple individuals on the team, according to Bhathena.
Bhathena said, “[Langan Garrett ’24] was the [Junior] on the 4x400m relay, she ran three events during her first track meet which is super exciting. We also had Ari Phillips [’21] throw an incredible distance in javelin, so Ari is incredible. I think we had a really strong distance group, like [Caroline Empey ’22], [Charlotte Whitehurst ’22], [Esme Huh ’22], [Tiffany Tang ’22], and [Natasha Muromcew ’22]. All of those people have been training so hard, and they got to show it off yesterday which was exciting.”
With Andover’s meets against Phillips Exeter Academy approaching quickly, Huh hopes to train well with her teammates in order to surmount its skilled rival and end the season with an undefeated record.
Huh said, “We only have two more meets, so I’m just trying to take it day by day. But I hope to get in a couple more strong workouts and some more [personal records] would be amazing obviously. I’m really looking forward to our Exeter meets because I think we can give Exeter a run for their money, and I hope that we can come out on top of that. Even though we have a short season, I’d like to go undefeated.”
Andover will look to secure another victory at home against Exeter on May 15.