By Leon Bunion
RAHWAY — In what seems to be a historical season, the Rahway boys & girls winter track team continues the program’s storied tradition.
After a dream 2009 season, head coach Patricia Volino-Reinoso chose the theme “Tradition Never Graduates” as the 2010 motto. The young men and women of the winter track team have lived up to that motto. The season started with the boys team winning the Merli Invitational. The girls team became the first in school history to repeat as Union County Relay Champions.
Just when some thought the season couldn’t get any better, for the first time in school history the boys & girls winter track teams won the elusive Union County title. For those that are not familiar with the sport, the county title is more difficult to win than a state sectional title.
However, for the entire season, “the ring has been the thing”, according to coach Gary Mobley. Winning the state sectional title has been the biggest team goal for both programs. And once again, history was made.
On Feb. 13, at approximately 11 p.m., the meet announcer announced that Rahway boys & girls had won the state sectional title. While most teams had already departed, the Indians and Lady Indians took their victory lap with their trophy in hand, marking the first time in school history that both teams had won.
“It was a very emotional moment for our program. We’ve won state titles before, but because of the co-ed nature of our sport, none have been completely satisfying because one team had to take a victory lap, while the other had to watch in disappointment.” said coach Leon Bunion. In addition to bringing home the team title, several athletes won individual titles and some in record fashion.
For the Indians, junior Jeremy Antivo broke meet and school records in both the 1600 and 3200 races. The Rahway Bomb Squad of Derrick Hayes, Leo Marcelin and Cary Jones swept the top 3 spots in the shot put. Senior captain Curtis Johnson came up big for Rahway with two 2nd place finishes (800m, 1600m), while teammate James Haynes took home 2nd and 3rd (55m, 55 hurdles). Malik Shell, William Harris and Gerald Jackson also scored for the Indians.
The Lady Indians were led by team captain Nichelle Harris. Harris had another incredible performance by winning both the 800m and 3200m while placing 2nd in the 1600m. Harris broke her own school records in the 1600m and 3200m. Ernestine Rodgers also had a big day, placing 2nd in the 55 hurdles and 3rd in the 400m. Denice Martin, Grace Woodrow, Andrea Powell, Daphna Darisme and Zakiya Stewart also scored for the Lady Indians.
Photo courtesy of Rahway High School
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