Track takes passion, dedication to state finals


Kaiwen Wang, Staff Writer

As the first day of May called for the exhilarating closing month of 2018-2019 school year, the majority of the student body rejoiced for the final countdown. However, a few Seniors encountered the emotional crisscrossing as they left their mark in Bob Benson 66’ Stadium for the one last time. The next day on their final high school trip to Waco, inside the blue and white bus were not only five of the most elite senior athletes and but also immeasurable amount of passion, dedication, and the legacy they are about to leave.

Despite their middling performance at Regionals, the 2018-2019 Track & Field team has reached more milestones while encountering more hardship than what is simply recorded in the books. Buttons’ resurgent effort could not have ensured them a regular spot on the award podium, especially without the consistent help from Coach Brimmer’s long distance program and Coach Watson’s hurdles squad. Having taken charge of the sprints team for the third year, Coach Odie also managed to earn points in regular season meets and districts with a roster consisting of mostly underclassmen.

Consistent coaching guidance was not the only factor to the team’s overall success in the season; it was the senior leadership that has set the right tone and led the blue and white to another season of athletic triumph. Not to mention all five state qualifiers this year are from the great class of 2019, a few of them have previously been the “honored guests” of State Track competition for not once but twice.

“We are back this year,” said distance runner Nathaniel Zapata, “and we are back stronger than ever.” First claiming bronze in 3200m with a time of 9’38’’, this all-state runner fell only a couple of seconds short to the award podium in the 1600m in the last year’s State championship. Also aiming to resurge from last year’s 4th place finish is veteran Michael Galvan, who qualified again this year for the 800m run. “This year I am looking forward to get a better time and place top three as well,” said Galvan.

The dynamic duo of Zapata and Galvan surely helped the team attain the reputation they have today, but the consistent and superb performance by another power duo was also irreplaceable on the team’s road to state. Having previously crowned in State hurdles in his sophomore year, senior Zach Davidsmeyer surely felt more comfortable this year as he now has Raul Vallejo running right by his side. Harvesting medals after trophies during regular season, the power hurdles duo have dominated once again in districts and regionals, earning them a spot at state. “Placing second last year wasn’t the best result,” commented former champion Davidsmeyer, “I am coming for the first place this time.”

Despite of the regular State appearances of the athletes already mentioned, long jumper Hilario Gomez is a new but truly dangerous addition to Central Catholic’s State squad. “We haven’t had a jumper going to state in a long time,” said the UIW football commit, “and now we are here to make history.” Setting a personal record of 20’11’’ previously in districts, Gomez for sure will aim to launch further than that in Waco Panther Stadium.

As the five Buttons’ final Track season folds up this weekend in the TAPPS 6A, their superb athleticism and leadership will be tested at the biggest stage. Looking forward to shine in their “one last dance” on the track and field, the five young men are more than determined to bring home some medals.