This weekend, the members of the University of Dallas track and field team will compete in the first meet of the year. They have worked hard over the past few weeks with high hopes for a successful season.
The team consists of a total of sixteen members. Many ran track in high school, while others were cross-country runners last semester. However, some have never run track before.
“I want to help them improve every day,” said Coach Matt Buchhorn, who is in his first season as UD’s track and field coach. “[I want] to show that with hard work you can be successful.”
Buchhorn’s goals for the team include breaking school records, as well as helping the runners reach their full potential. These goals are shared among the team members.
“We have a great shot at doing this in events such as the 400-meter dash, 4-by-4 relay and 800-meter relay,” said Buchhorn. “I am excited to see what happens.”
Each team member will be competing in events that are suited to his or her strengths.
Two athletes (Nicole D’Souza and junior Mike Varela) will represent the school in the shot put and discus throw. Freshman Katie Hand is the only team member running the steeplechase, while senior Jarred Priester will compete in the hurdles. The 800-meter dash is the most common event.
Juniors Clinton Heyer and Matt Barber have both run on the UD team before, and both have experience in track and cross-country.
“Clinton can really turn some heads,” said Buchhorn. “I think he is going to be a strong competitor within the 800 as well as the 4-by-4 relay.”
One of the most promising runners is freshman Will Remmes. His events include the 800-meter run, 400-meter dash and the 4-by-4 relay.
“I started running track in sixth grade and have been racing ever since,” said Remmes. “I love racing and I love winning, especially when I’m part of a relay.”
“Will has the talent where by his junior/senior year he could be looking to qualify for nationals,” said Buchhorn
Because UD does not have a track of its own, practices are held every day at the MacArthur High School track.
Workouts include fartleks (running at different speeds), tempo runs, long runs and repeated 2Ks. Two practices are held on Mondays and Wednesdays.
“Everything we’ve done has been challenging but doable,” said freshman Michelle DeRoche. “Coach is very good at tailoring the workouts to each person.”
Both the men’s and women’s teams will begin the season this weekend with their first meet at Trinity University in San Antonio.
“I am confident that the workouts will enable us to have some record-breaking success this year,” said Remmes.