This past weekend, the track team competed in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) Track & Field Championship in Seguin, Texas. This was the final conference meet for the runners this season, and they did not fail to impress.
At the championship meet, the team continued to break school records as they neared the end of an impressive season for both the men and the women.
Perhaps the most noteworthy performance was from freshman Prince Giadolor, who placed first in the 100-meter dash.
“Coming into the meet, my attitude was that I had to win no matter what,” Giadolor said. “It felt great to take first but what made it even more special was that I made school history.”
Giadolor is the only athlete from UD to ever place first in an individual SCAC Championship event.
On top of Giadolor’s success, almost every athlete set personal bests, helping Dallas get fourth place overall in their conference on the men’s side.
Another outstanding runner was senior Ryan McAnany, who, in addition to helping break the school record for the men’s 4×400 meter relay, placed third in the 1500-meter run and fifth in the men’s 800.
“It was such a good way to finish the last conference meet of my career,” McAnany said. “I’m just proud of the way the whole team competed and how we came together as a team to have fun and compete in the sport we love so much.”
A highlight of the meet for many runners was the unyielding support and encouragement they received from each other.
“I think the most exciting thing was realizing how close we had all really become,” sophomore Natalie Martinez said. “When one of us was competing, whether it be a thrower, distance or sprinter runner, you could count on having a crowd cheering you on and waiting for you at the finish line. Without a doubt we’re the loudest people at every meet. There’s no separation between grades; we’re all just a team.”
In addition to team unity, the athletes credit their impressive performance in part to their coach, Matt Barber.
“It’s comforting having a coach that believes in you more than you believe in yourself,” Martinez said. “He is always pushing us out of our comfort zones. He probably ends up running more than any of us do because he’s constantly next to us as we’re racing, shouting words of encouragement. We call ourselves the Barberians because all of the records we’ve broken and PR’s we’ve set are because of him.”
Barber humbly attributes the success to his runners’ hard work and looks forward to the team’s final meet this weekend at the United States Collegiate Athletics Association Championship in N. Y.
“We’re gunning for every single point we can claim,” Barber said. “We want the seniors to end on a big high note.”