Written by Garrett Ruggieri
Traveling to the Virginia Military Institute last weekend for the Keydet Invitational, the Roanoke men’s and women’s indoor track and field teams competed in high class. This meet featured some of the stiffest competition the Maroons’ will face all season, including a plethora of Division I teams, as well as familiar foes from the ODAC, Lynchburg, Randolph and Washington and Lee.
This competition did not slow down any of the Maroons’, especially freshmen Alexis Mattson and Quinn Harlan, and sophomore Lindsey Baxter. All three of these Lady Maroons’ had fantastic performances, as they each broke longstanding school records that date back to as far as 2007.
Quinn Harlan finished with a time of 7.75 seconds in the 60M dash, while mid-distance runner Alexis Mattson clocked out at 3:13.58 seconds in the 1000M race. Before the race, Mattson was worried about fatigue after a long week of tough workouts. Although this was her first race at the collegiate level, Mattson remained composed and committed to her game plan heading into the run. After taking an early spike from another runner, she finished with confidence and was very excited to find out that the school record for the 1000M would now be under her name. For Mattson, the strive for success doesn’t stop at there, as she said, “I know I can get the school record down to under 3:10 by mid-season.”
Lindsey Baxter set off to reach new heights in the pole vault competition, reaching 10’ 4’’ on her first launch. Baxter continuously told herself that she could get the record, exercising pure confidence to balance out her anxiousness. At this point, Baxter wasn’t going to stop at 10’4’’, she saw the bar raised to 10’10’’ and continued to have the same confident mindset. When she cleared the bar, Baxter credited her success to not only the countless hours of physical training, but also finally believing in herself to accomplish her goals. Agreeing with her teammates about always getting better, Baxter said, “I see the record as the beginning rather than the end goal, and I hope to soar far higher than 10′ 10″ in the meets to come.”
Through all the hard work, extra hours, and training, these outstanding Maroons’ athletes all said that sticking to their game plan and constantly believing in themselves was the true key to their success. Congratulations to freshmen Alexis Mattson and Quinn Harlan, and sophomore Lindsey Baxter on making history, and to all their teammates on the men’s and women’s track and field squad as well.
Finally, right around the corner, the Roanoke men’s and women’s track and field team will host the Finn Pincus Invitational on January 26th and 27th at the Cregger Center.