Members of the Track and Field team are still competing in these difficult times. PHOTO: Athens Track Twitter

HS Track and Field: Bulldogs create Virtual Meets

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ATHENS, OH — “I tell the kids you’re writing your own story for this season,” Athens Track and Field head coach Adam Gonczy said.

The story of this year’s Athens Track and Field team will be different from years past. With COVID-19 suspending all spring sports, Gonczy has created virtual meets for his team to compete in.
“It’s just trying to be creative in this time and give those kids an avenue to compete see how they compare to kids at other schools who are in the same situation,” Gonczy said.
Gonczy created several events just like a regular meet — mile runs, distance relays and field events to get as many of his athletes involved. Gonczy got in on the fun as well — doing a standing broad jump inside his home.
“They loved it. They’ve been training real hard,” Gonczy said. “It gave them something to do. I’ve seen them out on the bike path with parents cheering them on so it’s pretty neat. They’ve really liked the idea that they can go out and race.”
Gonczy gives his team and other participating schools a week to get their times and stats in — all on the honor system of course. And while these virtual meets give athletes a chance to compete, they all miss being around each other.
“They all have expressed that it’s not the same, without having their teammates there, without having the jersey, having other kids to run around and to be within the moment of a race,” Gonczy said.
With the status of spring sports still up in the air, Gonczy hopes that virtual meets will keep his team motivated, so that if there’s a season, both Bulldog track teams will be ready to defend their TVC titles.
“I think this is just the tip of the iceberg, I hope of trying to get the kids to still compete and keep them hungry, ” Gonczy said. “And if they’re able to have a season at the end of this season for a couple of weeks at least having the kids prepared for them to come back and have meets later on hopefully this season.”