Today we salute Northeast High School senior Anitria Sangster.
What was your most memorable race/moment?
My most memorable race was the 4x100 at Louie Bing Classic, our relay went 46.08, and we had the number one time in the nation for high school for 3 or 4 weeks. We ended up taking first place and each one of us got a trophy, I was elated.
Who would you consider your biggest competition over your four years?
My biggest competition was myself and my teammates. Every time I stepped on the track I would try to PR. It was like I would PR by a second almost every time, because I would push myself to the line. Also, whenever I stepped on the track with my teammates we always agreed to push each other to the end.
What was your greatest accomplishment?
My greatest accomplishment was winning state runner up as a team. We didn't have many girls, but we knew exactly what we had to do in order to accomplish this goal.
If you could do it all again what would you change about your running career in high school?
If I could do it all over again I would change who I ran for. I ran for Boyd Anderson for three years which was a, experience, but ended up transferring to Northeast my senior year, and having a great season. I always imagine how it would've been if I went to Northeast my freshman year. I don't regret anything though I met some amazing teammates at Boyd Anderson.
What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?
The most difficult obstacles I had to overcome was my foot injury at the beginning of the season and my back problem towards the end. These obstacles caused me to sit out and miss out on some really great training and track meets. I love track with all my heart so sitting in the bleachers for a month and watching my teammates practice was difficult for me. There would be days where I would cry because I couldn't practice, but every time I had a chance to step on the track I gave it my all.
What will you miss the most?
I will miss my coaches the most, Duchane and Damion Thomas. I believe that these are some of the best coaches in the state of Florida. They never gave up on me, they have so much faith in me and that motivates me to keep running track. I have known them since I was a little girl. I have seen all the great teams and athletes they have produced so it's just been a great experience being on their team, I loved it. They taught me life lessons, and how to be a young lady off the track and a beast on the track.
What advice you would give to younger athletes?
Grades come first. It doesn't matter how great of an athlete you are, you need school. Also, don't be too hard on yourself if races don't end up going the way you wanted them to.
What influence has your coach had with respect to your performance and overall life goals?
They call it coaching, but it's more like teaching. The Thomas' never gave us a workout just to give it to us. Every workout taught us life goals and the two things that I took away from every workout were responsibility because I am responsible for every outcome on and off the track, and the second one is giving up is NOT an option. When it gets hard you have to trust God and persevere.
What are your college plans?
I plan on attending Barton Community College in the summer. I did have other offers from bigger schools like Robert Morris and Northwestern State University, but I wanted to focus on my academics. Being at a big D1 could distract some people from what is important. Barton is a small college so it will be easy for me to stay focused on my grades, I'm all for academics. They do have great coaching and a good women's team so I do see myself excelling to the next level. I chose to go to Barton for two year and get my A.S then transfer to a D1 or D2 school to continue my academic and track career.
Who would you like to say thank you to?
The big guy upstairs, God, without him none of this would've been possible. I would also like to thank my family for supporting me at all my meets, my coaches Damion and Duchane Thomas for never giving up on me and for being parents away from home, my teammates for encouraging me whenever I felt down, Tony Sands, Coach Davis, and the Lauderdale Lakes Road Runner Organization who started me out with running at the age of 6.