Track and field opens season undefeated


Darlene Bible

DEAD sprint: Aaron Milburn ’24 competes in the 4×100-meter relay at the track and field team’s first meet of the season. The team won 90-28 at home against Sierra Canyon High School. The team’s next meet will be against Notre Dame, a league opponent, on March 23.

The girls and boys track and field team started their season 3-0 with wins against Sierra Canyon School and Marlborough School in a dual meet, followed by wins versus Chaminade High School and Alemany High School March 9 and 16, respectively.   

The girls team beat Chaminade 83-40 and the boys won 87-30. Against Alemany, the girls  won 88-25 and the boys 85-40.

In the meet versus Chaminade School, long-distance runner Saisha Kumar ’25 took first place in the mile and Phoebe Hsu ’24 won the two-mile. Long distance runner Nuzzy Sykes ’24 came first in the 800 and mile, tying Leo Craig ’24 in the two-mile.

Sykes said he had to shift his strategy  from running distance in cross country to running track.

“In some races the strategy is as simple as find someone who is racing the time you want to race and just hold on for dear life,” Sykes said. “In races when you’re working on a tactic of it, if you know your opponent is more of a sprinter than a distance runner you can take them out fast in the beginning and since they can’t hold on later in the race they’ll fall off and you can take the lead.” 

The squad had a number of first-place finishes across the field events. Jesse Goldman ’23 threw a 52-10 in shot put, which put him in first place in the event and met the MileSplit US Second Team Standard. The boys and girls teams won their high jump events with Pierce Neirick ’25 and Aidan Usher ’26 tying for first in the boys high jump and Charlotte Hogan ’24 winning on the girls side. Arize Nwike ’23 and Camille Weinstein ’24 won their respective triple jump events and Danny Tan-Goldhammer ’23 and Jessica Thompson ’23 won their long jump events.

The sprint group had multiple first place finishes, with Benson Fleisher ’23 and Thompson winning the boys and girls 200 meter dash. Rasak Ayeni ’23 placed first in the 400 meter dash and was joined by Fleisher, Usher and Mason Walline ’25 to win the 4×400 by a margin of .10 seconds, the team’s best run in the event this season.

Neirick said new hurdle coach Sydney Haydel ’10, who is in the school’s hall of fame for basketball and track and field, has played an important role in improving the squad’s hurdles.

“We’ve been working on a lot of form and technique because with the event, you can be a super fast runner, but if you’re not fast over the hurdles it’s going to hurt your time,” Neirick said. “Our new coach has been doing a really good job of teaching the group technique and step intervals. The difference between taking three steps and five steps between hurdles in a 110 meter hurdle race can really make a difference.”

Sprinter and hurdler Satya Chang ’25 said that as the season progresses and the team reaches a certain level of physical fitness, the most important aspect of improvement is mentality.

“My goals for this season are to [set a personal record] from last season and ideally try to get sub 50 second in the 300 hurdle race” Chang said. “That kind of progress is definitely pushing it, which is why it’s so important to work on the mental aspect of the sport. Physically, it’s doable, so now it’s up to putting myself in the right mindset at meets.”

The team will face Notre Dame School March 23.