Family feeling at the forefront of track team

Muliple+track+team+members+work+on+sprints+during+an+April+practice.+From+left+to+right%3A+Peter+Vega+23%2C+Demi+Oni+23+Christopher+Barnaby+22%2C+Amechi+Abuda+22%2C+

Charlie Cooper

Muliple track team members work on sprints during an April practice. From left to right: Peter Vega ’23, Demi Oni ’23 Christopher Barnaby ’22, Amechi Abuda ’22,

Maia Barantsevitch, Editor-In-Chief

This 2022 spring season, 88 students are participating in track at The Masters School. The team has competed in a total of three track meets so far, and has set a strong precedent by breaking  two new school records. 

Coaches Yolanda Nyero, Juan Cobos, Benjamin Allen, and Luciano Fiore manage the team. Due to the large number and multiple events, practices are divided by type of track racing. Practice is split between sprints, distance, jumpers, and throwers. Sprinters, the biggest team, is split into sub-categories. 

Cameron Lovett, a current junior, has been a part of the Masters School’s track team since grade seven. Initially, the sport piqued his interest but it was the support of the coaches  that persuaded him to continue competing. Lovett is a sprinter, which means that during track meets he runs the 100, 200 and 4 x100 meters. 

Lovett said he finds sprinting to be the most rewarding. He said, “All your energy is exerted out and it’s fun competing with people head to head, there’s an energy from the crowd.”

 Lovett has also found the sport to be beneficial outside of practices and meets. He said, “The sport has helped me become a better athlete and person and even improve my work ethic.” 

Cobos, one among three track coaches this spring season, has been a part of the Masters community for three years, and has coached track every year he has worked at Masters. Cobos has found that it takes time and dedication to enjoy the rewards of being a coach. 

“During meets, everyone is on the Masters team. Everyone is a Panther and everyone is cheering from the infield to the top of the hill at the track. So that’s where you really feel like one enormous family.” ”

— Juan Cobos, Athletics Operations Manager & Track Coach

“Track is one of those sports where you don’t see immediate gratification and you don’t see huge jumps. The really amazing thing to see is, at the beginning of the season, how one student athlete performs and comparing that to their performance at the end of the season,” he said. 

Although it seemed daunting to coach a team of such tremendous size, he shared, the benefits are shown through the strength of the team. 

Cobos said, “During meets, everyone is on the Masters team. Everyone is a Panther and everyone is cheering from the infield to the top of the hill at the track. So that’s where you really feel like one enormous family.” 

At the beginning of the season a questionnaire was sent out asking athletes how they wanted to be addressed, this allowed the coaches to find the best way to communicate with the student athletes. Answers ranged from being yelled at, to being pulled aside, or discussing the issue at a later time. 

“We make sure we have a conversation with everyone and for the most part, everyone wants to just be pulled to the side and told this is where your mechanics broke down,” Cobos said. 

Looking to the future, the track team and coaches are looking forward to FAA championships, NYSAIS, and NEPSAC competitions. 

Cobos said, “Obviously we want to take average of the talent that’s already here, but with a group that’s so large, we have a lot of young talent that’s coming through that we need to develop and we need to allow them to fall in love with running and just being in love with the fact that your body can move.”