Andover Girls Indoor Track and Field hosted 21 schools and over 250 athletes for the New England Preparatory School Track Association (NEPSTA) All-Comers Meet on Saturday.
Although the meet was unscored, Andover swept the 55-Meter Dash, with Emily Cain ’23 leading the charge. In the final event of the day, Andover’s Sprint Medley Relay (SMR) team ran a time of 4:21.57, qualifying for the New Balance Indoor Nationals meet that will be held at the TRACK in March.
Running both the 55-Meter Dash and the 800-Meter leg of the SMR, Wylie Roossien ’26 noted how the meet was memorable, especially for the team’s upperclassmen. The positive turnout amplified the emotions within the team, according to Roossien.
“One thing that was really awesome about Saturday was the fact that it was our last home meet of the season. That was really special for a lot of the upperclassmen and Seniors, especially the Captains… So there were just a lot of people there supporting them, cheering them on through the highs and the low moments,” said Roossien.
Faced with more competition and new events, such as the Sprint and Distance Medley Relays, the team felt greater pressure to perform well, according to Grace Hammond ’23. Ultimately, Hammond observed the team channeling its nerves into motivation, eager to compete at its best.
“This meet was special too because we ran…different events than we normally would… I definitely think that there was more pressure, which is kind of nice. Our coach, who is our sprint coach, Coach [Matthew] McMasters kept saying, ‘No pressure, no diamond.’ It’s exciting to have a moment and an opportunity where you have to perform. I think it was a good nervousness,” said Hammond.
Head Coach Keri Lambert pushed the team to bring all of its energy and focus to the meet, according to Allison Schneider ’26. Schneider highlighted the lively cheering and support that was apparent throughout the day.
“Coach Lambert at the beginning of the meet, early in the morning, made sure to remind us to bring excellent energy to the track and to be completely immersed in each other and ourselves, and the running and just the sport. We brought some really good cheering and energy. Everyone was rooting for their teammates, and it was great,” said Schneider.
Sharing a similar sentiment to Schneider, Roossien appreciated the constant support from her teammates, which created a welcoming and comfortable competition environment. Other members of the national-qualifying SMR team included Hammond, Audrey Powers ’24, and Jazzy Cormier ’24.
“As the last leg, all that was going through my mind was, ‘Let me give it everything I have.’ I really wasn’t too worried about disappointing anybody. There’s never any pressure on us, which I love about the [Andover Girls Track and Field] culture. There’s not any expectation to qualify or anything like that… Honestly, I think the support of my teammates, coaches, [and] some of my family there, really helped me relax. When I got on the line, and I received the baton, I was like, ‘I can do this,’” said Roossien.
Andover Girls Indoor Track and Field will face Phillips Exeter Academy on Wednesday.