Samuel Vazquez always knew he would be an Olympian… he just wasn’t sure when. The twenty-eight-year-old proved his athleticism through his high-school athletic career, when he was named the Adidas High School National Champion in the mile in 2003. Vazquez was also named the All-Time Florida High School Fastest Miler with a 4:03 mile, and owns six individual Florida State Championship titles.
The reason Malyka Abramson joined cross country in the first place was because of her mom.
Human beings are literally born to run. At least that’s what journalist and former war correspondent Christopher McDougall sought to prove despite skepticism in Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World has Never Seen.
Springfield native Lance Brooks began his sports career playing basketball at the YMCA in fourth grade. After competing in several track and field events and excelling in the discus throw at New Berlin High School, Brooks found himself breaking the high school discus throw record and winning just about every meet he entered. Brooks is currently residing at the Olympic Village in London, waiting for his opportunity to compete for the gold in the discus throw at the 2012 Olympic Games. We caught up with him to find out more about his journey to London and his personal life.
If you ever get the chance to sit down with Chanli Mundy and ask her about her weekend plans, this is what you’ll get: “I’m a pretty boring person. I just run on the weekends.”
Colin Rinne sure gets into some crazy antics with his teammates.
22-year-old Maurice Mitchell was a standout athlete while attending Raytown South High School. The Kansas City, Missouri native won eight state titles and broke state records for the 100- and 200-meter dashes. He received an athletic scholarship to study at Florida State University and began running for the Seminoles in 2009. Mitchell is a five-time NCAA Division I All-American, thirteen-time All-ACC, eleven-time ACC champion, 2011 NCAA Outdoor 200-meter dash and 4 x 100-meter champion and ACC 200-meter dash outdoor record holder.
Kara Patterson owes her success as a javelin thrower to her freshman geometry teacher at Skyview High School. Ron Heidenreich, who was also the girls’ track coach at the Washington school, suggested Patterson try the javelin after quitting softball.
Sarasota native and 2001 graduate of Cardinal Mooney High School Lacy Janson walked on the track for the first time during her junior year. After clearing 11'6" later that year and finishing sixth at the indoor national championships, Janson finished as the state runner-up her senior year and won the high school national championships a month later in North Carolina and the 2011 Junior Pan American Games in Argentina. She went on to compete at Florida State University, where she was the 2003 indoor pole vault national champion, a six-time Atlantic Coast Conference pole vault champion, a four-time All-American and a six-time All-ACC honoree.
Director Matthew Arnold was fortunate enough to be a student of Coach Joe Newton, a legendary high school cross country and track coach at York High School in Elmhurst, Illinois.
Christian Taylor never intended on becoming one of the world’s best triple jumpers.
Ciarán O’Lionaird is not your average collegiate super-running machine. The Cork, Ireland native is quick to note that his success as a runner didn’t come without a few sacrifices along the way. He was initially recruited by Michigan coach Ron Warhurst after an impressive high school career. A variety of injuries related to his back, hips and pelvis hindered his performance and potential, prompting O’Lionaird’s transfer to Florida State University. (via MileSplit)
Ciarán O’Lionaird is not your average collegiate super-running machine. The Cork, Ireland native is quick to note that his success as a runner didn’t come without a few sacrifices along the way. He was initially recruited by Michigan coach Ron Warhurst after an impressive high school career. A variety of injuries related to his back, hips and pelvis hindered his performance and potential, prompting O’Lionaird’s transfer to Florida State University.
Derek Bolser thought he was having an “especially bad year” of allergies at the beginning of his senior cross country season.
It was a great 2011-2012 in both cross country and track across the Sunshine State. Many of our seniors will soon be on their way to start their college careers both athletically and academically so we wanted to salute them one more time in this special feature.
By Ana Cuello / June 26, 2012 2:50 PM
Two weeks ago it was announced that ESPN would be shuttering its ESPNHS business, which included running website DyeStat and its event management business. Many people have emailed us for clarification on what that means for the track and cross country events at Disney/ESPN Wide World of Sports.
Last week the FHSAA held a celebration for this year’s top Florida scholar-athletes at the Academic All-State Awards Banquet, which took place on June 18th. The banquet brings together 12 male and 12 female athletes from around Florida, honoring and recognizing them for their exemplary academic achievements, commendable service to their community and dedication towards athletic excellence.