Yesterday, Friends School participated in the field day as a part of our participation in the Inter-Institutional Athletic Competition. We won the competition which consisted of some normal track and field events and some additional events such as egg toss and tug of war. We completed the year-long 4-sport competition placing 2nd in our 4 team conference.
But that makes a boring story, doesn’t it? So…
We left school at 7:15 with most of the students, picked up a few along the way and arrived at the 4-H Youth Development Center a little after 8:30. The first event, a 2.5 mile run referred to as the “marathon” began promptly at 9:00 on the road out in front of the facility. Two police motorcycles led as the students ran up over a hill and out of sight. Ten minutes later a lone runner came back over the hill. He was wearing a grey shirt and everyone assumed, at first, that he was from the Cadets. But no, as he came closer it was our own Brandon. In first place. He entered the field of competition for the final two laps all alone and finished about 400 meters in front of his nearest competitor.
This is particularly special because we did absolutely no distance training and he beat students for whom a distance run is a part of their everyday routine (Cadets and 4-H). This kids got game. I’m trying to figure out if there is any opportunity for him in Belize to realize this potential.
The next event was the egg toss. Our entries were Harrison and Cion. Together, standing on top of each other, they might reach 6 feet tall and weigh 200 pounds, but they have athletic ability. Ta-da. First again.
We ran the sprints in a grass field where the lanes were marked off with lime. Tyrese was our quickest student and we expected him to do well in the sprints but in the 200 he stepped in a hole and fell. Surprisingly, Michael got 2nd. Woohoo. We are doing well after three events.
Of course we didn’t continue on that pace all day, but we did place 2nd in the lime and spoon and the high jump. I was particularly pleased with the high jump because we did not have any opportunity to practice so the boys were learning as we went. There was a jump-off for second which Michael won.
I thought it would be fun to add some actual field events to the day, so I had promised to get a shot put while in the states. I showed the boys the rudiments of the event and let them practice during the morning break, then over lunch we ran the competition. Tyrese won with a 36’0′ throw of a JrHi boy’s shot. (Ok, being the only school with a shot, maybe we cheated on that one by practicing ahead of time.)
The most exciting event of the day was the 4 x 100 relay. The boys wanted to tell me the order in which they were going to run. Ahh, no. Fastest on anchor, 2nd fastest on opening leg. Michael, you will go first, Shamar second, Brandon 3rd, Tyrese anchor. It was a close race all the way and Tyrese and the boy from 4-H were neck and neck for the last 50 yards. We won by a good inch and a half.
There was once during the day when we had a special teaching opportunity. As mentioned, we had never had a chance to practice the high jump. When one of our boys had a problem and looked a little awkward when practicing a jump, our other students laughed at him. I, and Ms Candi, explained that everyone was doing the best they knew how and we do not laugh when someone is giving it their very best, even if they are an opponent. And we particularly do not laugh or poke fun at our own teammates.
At Friends School we support each other in all of our efforts.
Here are photos of some of our boys with their medals: