SENIOR RECOGNITION: Kelly track and field athletes reflect on careers with Hawks
Jacob Wiegand ~ Southeast Missourian
With the cancellation of spring athletics for the 2020 season, seniors in the Standard-Democrat coverage area are not able to have final moments with their teammates.
Below is the ninth part of a series of stories on recognizing senior athletes, where they are going next, what they loved most about playing their respective sport at their school, and more.
The series continues with the Kelly track and field team. The Hawks had six seniors on the roster with four available to comment.
“Getting here when I first started, the biggest thing was to change the culture,” Kelly head track and field coach Josh Freeman said. “That was the group that I had that kind of started changing the culture. I think that they’ve laid the foundation for people to follow in their footsteps. Winning conference the past two years has increased our numbers by 30-plus kids since I’ve been here, so I think they just laid the foundation for setting a program that’s going to be good for years to come.”
Other sports, activities, and clubs… Played on the football team, the girls’ basketball team, the girls’ soccer team, and participated in cheerleading; FTA, FBLA
Plans after high school… Attending Mineral Area College in Park Hills, Mo., and has an undecided major, but is attempting to become either a tattoo artist or become an Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighter. She is also playing on the soccer team.
Advice for underclassmen… “Prove people wrong. Whenever they tell you that you can’t do something, prove them wrong. An underdog story. Nothing is better than an underdog story.”
Favorite track memory… “Last year, when I was two inches from the school record.”
What got you interested in track… “I was staying after football weights, and we had a track meet, and I saw this big guy — we call him Shane — and he threw this iron ball, and I saw it and was like, ‘That seems cool, I’m going to try that next year,’ He was a big, buff guy, so I told him that I would throw it farther than him.”
Other sports, activities, and clubs… Played on the football team and participated in the jazz band, marching band, concert band, and choir
Plans after high school… Planning to go to the Marines
Advice for underclassmen… “Don’t slack. Just get it done.”
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What got you interested in track… “My brother. He ran before me.”
Favorite track memory… “The first time I ran hurdles. It was pretty fun, and I didn’t know what I was doing whatsoever.”
Other sports, activities, and clubs… Played on the football team and the boys’ basketball team
Plans after high school… Planning to go to the Marines.
Advice for underclassmen… “Work hard.”
What got you interested in track… “Coach Freeman.”
Favorite track memory… “State last year.”
Other sports, activities, and clubs… Participated in band; Beta Club
Plans after high school… Go to college and has an undecided major, and hopefully run track in college.
Advice for underclassmen… “Stay focused. It’s a long ride; take it day-by-day.”
Favorite track memory… “Placing fifth in state in the 100-meter dash.”
What got you interested in track… “I always liked running as a kid, and in elementary school, I’d be racing kids, so I guess that’s what got me into it.”