The Section 1 Class B championships meet was a great opportunity for Edgemont’s track and field competitors to have one more shot at earning personal records and hitting cut times for the state qualifier.
Freshman Amanda Jaffe was “super excited to get a P.R. this season” in the 1,500-meter in a time of 4:58.39. Jaffe said that she seems “to do better at big meets because I get excited.”
Jaffe has also improved her 800-meter time and form drastically this season and learned how to “kick” at the end of the race to maximize her performance. She enjoyed practicing for the 800 and was happy she was getting so much better at the race.
Jaffe hopes to get another P.R. at the state qualifier to end her season on a high note. The good news is she has three more years to compile records.
On the other side of the coin is James Lu, a senior competing in his final season of high school track and field. Lu had a major adjustment to make as longtime coach J.C. Periac retired unexpectedly on the first day of preseason, pushing new assistant coach Nikki Rosee into the spotlight in working with the other head coach, Steve Rubenstein.
The workouts differed, but Lu and his teammates adjusted. Lu also began to work on new events like the mile and the steeplechase, which he said “made the season really interesting and fun.”
At the class meet, Lu ran a 2:06:79 in the 800-meter, which earned him 12th place. He was disappointed with the time because he felt he could have done better as he was shoved and tripped at the beginning of the race. That slowed him down, but he recovered with the poise of a veteran.
Lu’s goal is to “lock down my mental game since I often psych myself out,” he said.
Since Lu enjoyed exploring different races this season, he encouraged his teammates “to go out of their comfort zone and try other events.”
Lu also wanted to share some advice before he leaves the team: “From all my experience, a piece of advice is to take a risk in all your races.”
Just like the Edgemont coaches remind their athletes, Lu said it is important not to overthink your races. Lu admitted that at times he was too scared and conservative in his races, which prevented him from improving. He is encouraging future Edgemont runners to go out of their comfort zone and “give it your all.”