The indoor track team here at EHHS has been a steady, strong team for years. However, it does not garner all the recognition it deserves. The season began the first week of December and can conclude as late as the end of March, depending on how far each athlete advances in the postseason. Practices occur five days a week at both EHHS and Hillhouse High School, while meets are once a week and can vary in location. The team is coached by Coach Rusty Dunne, Coach Destiny Coward, and Coach Vicario.
Led under the wing of Coach Dunne for the past twenty-six years, the team has accomplished many feats. These include having athletes compete at the national level in shot put and pole vault, as well as having many progress to the collegiate level. While the team is quite small this year with seven female and ten male athletes, they still expect to see extreme levels of success this season. Coach Dunne said, “We have small numbers, but we have one of the best female athletes in the area: Kisha Francois. She’s one of the best in the state of Connecticut.” Kisha, currently a sophomore, earned herself a spot in the New England Championship meet last year as a freshman, and went all-state as well. As far as male athletes go, Dunne has great things to say about senior Evan Damian. Dunne said, “55-meter high hurdles is his primary event and he is a very good athlete.” So far this year, Kisha is the women’s top scorer, while Evan is the men’s top scorer.
As Coach Dunne mentioned, Kisha has made quite a name for herself in such a short time of being on the team. In her second year on the team, Kisha competes in the 55-meter dash and long jump events. She currently holds records for both of those events, with 7.46 seconds and 17 feet 4 inches respectively. “When I first broke them I was surprised because I’ve never done indoor before, but it’s cool to hold school records,” said Kisha. Kisha looks forward to SCC’s and States, and hopes to repeat and hopefully surpass her successes of last year.
In Evan’s second, and last, year on the team, he has become a big asset. He competes in the 55-meter hurdles and 4x2 race events. He is most successful in the 55-meter hurdles, so that is his favorite. In regards to how the season is doing so far, Evan said, “The season is going pretty good. I've gotten top five in a matter of four meets in the 55-hurdles with over 50 kids in each meet.” Evan is focused on making a run, literally, in the postseason.
Four-year member Bryce competes in the distance events, 800 meters and up. He has been running mostly the 1600-meter this year. He recently cut ten seconds off of his time for the 1600-meter run and achieved a personal record, PR. Bryce said, “We have been putting in a lot of work at practice, in the weight room, on the roads, and even some late nights and early mornings at the track.” According to Bryce, due to this hard work, several people have already qualified for the state meets including at least one of the relay teams. Others who have not yet qualified have hit personal records.
Key meets that are coming soon include the Southern Connecticut Coach Invitational, SCC West Championship, Class M Championship, State Opens, and New England Championships.
We wish good luck to the entire team as they embark on the season and postseason in a couple months.
Catch the team in action by attending one of their meets!