The royals faced off against the toughest field of the year. They did not win the meet. No team rings. No team trophies.
They competed in 7 of 16 events – they scored points in all of them. They had one state champion, a runner up, four 4th place finishes, and one 8th place finish. They fought. They outperformed their seeds. They did better than anyone thought they would have at the beginning of the season. They left with their heads held high. They left with a greater appreciation for each other – a brotherhood. They came into this season with many hearts. They left with but one.
The season was more than just a number of meets. It was more than a group of individuals. It was more than any of the cliché track quotes or “what ifs”. It was a small group of coaches and large group of athletes that believed in themselves and each other. It was a family. It IS a family. A family with highs and lows, laughter and woes.
In just over three months this group of young men fought weather, fellow school teams, and the adversity of everyday life as teenagers. They listened, they learned, they trusted their coaches. They trusted themselves and each other. They grew not only as athletes, but young men. The coaches grew in this adversity as well.
The result? A third place finish in one of the last stalwarts of the open class track and field system when less than a month ago they carried low expectations by the “resident pros”.
The 4×4 team of Jackson Sweeney, Nick Bostock, Nick Bowman, and Chaz Birchfield, set a season record with a 3:20 flat performance in the 2nd heat to take 8th.
Gabe Fendel decided it was time to show that he was again on the rise and placed 4th in the 1600 with a time of 4:14
Nate Smith showed what 4 years of dedication can bring placing 4th in the 300H with a time of 38.39.
Noah Malone had a pair of 4th place finishes in the 100 and 200M dashes, setting the school record in the 200 prelims at 21.69.
The 4×1 team of Chase Maxey, Madison Norris, Jack Boyd, and Noah Malone, were the favorite going into the meet and ran another fast time of 41.59, which was good enough for a 2nd place finish.
Lastly, Madison Norris got his redemption on a season lost a year ago and was crowned the state champion in the 110H in a time of 14.02.
This year the Southeastern Boys track team was a lot of things. Above all, they were ROYALS.
Thank you for a wonderful season, athletes. Thank you for great leadership from coaches Akialis, Alano, Gayde, Golden, Loomis, Price, and Stone.
For those returning, be ready. Track season is just around the corner.