MS track pivots from spring to fall season

The middle-school track coaches say they are doing well and learning how to cope despite many challenges, including the season being switched from the spring to fall.

“At first I thought they were messing with me because I was like ‘what we’re starting in two weeks?’” Coach Melissa Landmesser said. “But when I think about it, it’s actually better right now because the kids are just so into it, I think because of the whole quarantine, … and they’re just so excited to see each other.”

Lots of precautions have to be taken for the safety of the athletes.

“When the athletes come out, we take the humidity and heat, make sure it’s not too hot and then take their temperature and ask some questions to see where they’ve been,” Coach Greg Eller said. “We kind of got it streamlined a little bit so it works pretty good now they all know the routine now. So it probably takes five or 10 minutes.”

Most of the athletes appear to be adjusting well.

“I think in many ways young people seem to be more adaptable to these changes than a lot of adults,” Coach Carolyn Horst said. “So far we’ve had no issues with noncompliance or complaining about wearing the masks. Everyone just comes out and they do it.”

Eighth-grader Hayden D. said the coaches have been strict about wearing masks.

“All the coaches are really making sure that everyone wears a mask at all times besides when we’re running,” Hayden said. “Basically they’re like hammering that on us and won’t let us take it off when not running.”

Horst said the changes haven’t hurt participation.

“I’d say we have a good chunk of returning students,” Horst said. “Most of them have come back and we have quite a few seventh-graders signed up, much more than any of the coaches anticipated.Most of my girls have come back and they seem to be excited and very competitive so I think we’re going to do really well. In terms of just what I’ve seen in the week and a half of practices we’ve had so far all of the boys and girls seem incredibly focused. I think when they’re coming to practice they’re really trying to hone in on getting better.”

By Garrison Gates

Editor’s note: Brevard Public Schools policy prohibits the inclusion of middle-schoolers’ last names on district-sponsored websites.