It has been almost three weeks.
Track and field season in the Lackawanna Track Conference had been scheduled to start with scrimmage meets on March 17 and March 18, and surprisingly, the weather in NEPA has been uncharacteristically cooperative.
But the coronavirus pandemic slammed the door on high school athletics and it doesn’t appear to be opening, even a mere crack. In fact, it seems as though more locks are being put in place.
As the days of the calendar rip away, athletes, who are pretty smart, see the writing on the wall.
Track and field is a different type of sport. Not more difficult or more challenging, just different. There are several levels of athletes and skill sets that need developing to ready for the season. Distance runners must train and log miles, sprinters must do their dreaded mid-distance work and 400-meter workouts, hurdle candidates must work and craft their techniques, throwers need strength and reps in the circles and jumpers need to develop speed and quickness. There are a lot of variables going at a practice.
Most of all, every track and field athlete, even the throwers, need conditioning.
Not only are there no meets, but there are no organized practices. That is a real problem in the future.
When Gov. Tom Wolf closed schools until at least April 30, it wiped out the regular season in the LTC. Don’t believe me? The Jordan Relays were scheduled to run at Scranton Memorial Stadium on April 30.
But, this is a blog about hope, and maybe, more importantly, what these mature beyond their years seniors are learning about themselves and life, and the challenges they may face in their adult years.
It looks like, being involved in this sport has had a remarkable influence on them.
Today, Western Wayne senior and soon-to-be University of Virginia star, Trina Barcarola pens her third journal entry as she copes with the prospect of losing her last season and other senior-year milestones.
Here are her powerful words:
This past Tuesday would have been the second meet of the season;
coincidentally I had a hill workout scheduled for this afternoon. I looked
at the amount I had to run and was a bit taken back. Twenty-four total
hills for a sprinter? Uh, OK Trina. I would much rather be flying
through the air trying to clear a horizontal bar with a vertical stick at the
Wallenpaupack meet, but I guess running these absurd amount of hills
would have to suffice.
The weather was quite serene. While taking
breaks in between each hill run, I had the incredible privilege to admire
the golden sunset on the lake just beside the road. It was peaceful. The
scene’s beauty seemed unreal. I was grateful for this view and felt like I
could not ask for much more in that moment.
I finished up the hills and the sun had sunk in the sky. Returning home,
I realized I extended the workout three times the amount I was suppose
to. Instead of running eight hills, I ran 24. Sitting, staring at
the ground, I knew something was wrong when I started contemplating
my life existence on hill number 20. But reflecting back, I would not
change a thing. I got to experience the beauty of an incredible sunset for
an extended amount of time and I realized how much my body can
actually handle when being mentally and emotionally motivated by this
With this experience, I have really opened my eyes to noticing the
beauty and power of nature. Taking hikes and walks have become quite
regular in my schedule. It really does decrease anxiety and stress in the
midst of what is going on in the world. Each day, I am continuously
reminded not to worry about what is or what is to come. Becoming in
tune with the people and the world I live in seems to be the current
Western Wayne, Class of 2020
Joby Fawcett has covered high school sports — including football, girls and boys volleyball, girls and boys tennis, girls and boys swimming, boys basketball, girls and boys track and field, and girls and boys lacrosse — for 22 years. The High School Sports Blog offers deeper insights plus statistical and historical information for fans and features photos, videos and graphics along with Top 5 polls for tennis and volleyball. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9100 x5367; @sportsTT