By Konnor Newton, Student Journalist
This spring Husson welcomes two new sports teams to their athletic lineup. Both men’s and women’s outdoor track will be competing in the NCAA conference for the first time, throughout this semester. According to student athletes the addition of an outdoor track team has been inevitable. With strong cross-country and indoor track teams Husson already has it’s finger on the pulse of the D-III running world. Many of new outdoor track athletes are confident that the infant team will be able to hold there own against most of the schools in the division. To many of the athletes on the team, regardless of how successful this first year is, it’s enough of a reward to be able to hit the track again after competing in high school.
“Runnings in my blood, ever since middle school I’ve been running track so the moment I saw we were getting a track team I was on that.” Eric Cooper, a Sophomore at Husson is optimistic with the team dynamic so far “I’ve gotten to meet all new people on this team, like people I know I wouldn’t have met if it hadn’t of been for this and despite that it’s been like family from the start.”
Practice has been under way since the start of the semester and according to senior Jeff Love it’s been very intensive. Training 6 days a week the team participates in 2 speed endurance days, a cross training day, long runs, and two days in which each athlete runs their own prescribed distance. Love says that it’s a lot of work but the team’s morale is at a consistently high level, likely due to the team’s awareness that the Husson community’s eyes are on them as basically the new kid on the block. For the most part this is an accurate assessment of the team, out of 21 guys competing on the male team, only 7 are joining from previous running teams. When the athletic department announced there would be a new sports team emails went out to all academically eligible athletes. This has made for a decent sized team consisting of many new faces. “The men’s track team was inevitable, it may have been a matter of funding but we’re here now and a lot of guys have been primed since high school to compete.” Love says. He explains that while looking at a lot of the guys time-trial times that were taken at the start of the season in comparison to other athletes in the division’s qualifying times, the Husson men are stacking up well. Those start of the season time trials have been used as a baseline for improvement throughout training so far.
Both team are under the guidance of 4 coaches and one assistant coach covering the various events associated with track. When asked how the coach to athlete relationship has been so far “The coaching staff has an immense amount of experience and education and that, combined with the athletes’ trust, respect and confidence; has what it takes to get us where we need to be.”
The Husson men will be competing in their first meet on April 2nd at Bowdoin College.
For more information visit: http://athletics.husson.edu/sports/mtrack-out/index.