Indoor Track and Field Athletes Deserve Your Attention

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By Peter Gerken

Being a high school runner you don’t get the benefits that most of the other sports in high school. The most popular sports are most certainly going to be football, soccer, basketball, baseball and lacrosse. All of these sports usually have home games on the school’s campus at the very least. In running it’s a total different situation. Other than maybe one cross-country meet a season if a school is lucky and several spring dual outdoors meets you’re always on the road.

This can be very hard on runners. Never having all your classmates in the stands cheering you on compared to other sports. The White Plains high school indoor track and field team runs the majority of their meets in northern Manhattan. Sometimes athletes can get pumped by hearing the sound of cheering fans that might help them as an individual and as a team do better.

Also something that is extremely challenging for them is their training schedule. They don’t get to practice on an indoor track surface. If the weather is warm enough the Tigers can train on the outdoor track or local roads. If the weather is too cold out then the runners are forced to running in the halls of C building in the high school. There is a 220-yard rectangular loop the Tigers can run inside but you can’t accelerate to your peak running speed due to the tight corners in the building and running on the concrete floors can be very damaging on a runner’s shins and requires 15 minutes of icing after each workout to avoid injury.

The White Plains Girls and Boys indoor track team have been creating several headlines whenever they compete. Track and Field doesn’t receive the amount of media coverage that football, basketball, baseball and lacrosse get in the local daily papers and high school sports websites.

There have been many compelling stories so far for the White Plains Boys and Girls indoor track teams. Junior distance runner Chris Cardon is quickly making a name for himself since the 2011-2012 school year began. Cardon won the individual league title in cross-country this fall. This past Sunday in one day he won the 1600 and 3200 meter race. That is no small feat.

Thomas Johnson who last week won the long jump and triple jump in a meet a week earlier took home the long jump and high jump title at the league meet. Tyler Ford ran an amazing time to win the league title in the 300-meter dash. On the girls side the 4-x-400 relay that didn’t qualify for the Millrose Games several days earlier won the event at the league meet.

Once again some of the best sports stories come within the sports you don’t get to read about often online and in daily papers. For running fans I suggest checking out the following website to keep you updated on high school track and field:

A Golfer Everyone Should Root For

Pardon the Interruption for talking about the world of men’s professional golf in these pages in the middle of winter but there is a story out there that needs to be told to everyone. Erik Compton isn’t
your average PGA Tour rookie in 2012.

Compton has had two heart transplants. At two different points in his life he has had to say goodbye to his family because he thought he might die during the heart transplants operations. Despite his medical setbacks he has never given up on his passion and dreams of playing the game at golf at the highest level on the PGA Tour.
His dream of making it to the PGA Tour became a reality when he secured his PGA Tour Card through great play on the 2011 Nationwide Tour, a so called minor league for pro golfers. In his first event of his rookie season on the PGA Tour he made the cut and finished in a tie for 67th place. This was a nice start to the season for a man who defines the word courage.

Peter Gerken is a Westchester County native and has published previously with The Patent Trader and the Bronxville Review Press. While attending Boston College he was the sports editor of the university’s newspaper, The Heights, and served as a staff writer for the Boston College sports publication Eagle Action. He can be reached at

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