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Four Friars qualify for Winter Meet of Champions

Coach Koenig and the runners have hit the “halfway” point in the season and hope to hit their peak nicely in the month of February.

With the surprising cooperation from Mother Nature throughout this month of January, Malvern’s winter track team has been able to get in the workouts necessary to progress and improve in their running, jumping, throwing, and pole vaulting skills.

Mr. Mike Koenig, head coach of the winter track team, has enjoyed the season so far and is looking ahead towards the big events including the Philadelphia Meet of Champions in the middle of February and Nationals, which will be sometime in March.

It has been nine years since a shot putter has represented Malvern in the Philadelphia Meet of Champions. This year, three seniors are very close.

“Our success lies in those two meets and the qualifying meets leading up to them,” Koenig said. “Four of our guys have already qualified for the Meet of Champions. They are sophomore Sebastian Constantini, junior Peter Borger, junior David Bolles, and senior Aaron Shirker.”

It has been nine years since a shot putter has represented Malvern in the Philadelphia Meet of Champions.

“The shot putters are the guys who throw a twelve pound ball as far as they can,” Koenig said. “Seniors Jake Glavin, Justin Tichenell, and Dan Ford are talented shot putters and are very close to qualifying for the Meet of Champions.”

Koenig said he cares about every athlete on his team, not just the ones who qualify for the top events.

“I want to see improvement in all the athletes,” Koenig said. “Like in any other sport, it is great to see students outside of the classroom in a different light.”

This year, there are a ton of freshmen on the winter track team according to senior James Pfister.

“They have been doing really well in the meets,” Pfister said. “All of us have been having a great time during the races.”

Pfister has been running winter track since his days as a freshman.

“I think it is great going out to every practice to stay in shape, and the workouts are really fun,” Pfister said. “I would probably just stay at home and do nothing if it were not for winter track.”

Like Pfister, senior Jimmy Dugan has been running winter track since freshman year.

“I have grown to like winter track more and more because I have tried to be more like a team leader,” Dugan said.

Unlike Pfister, Dugan runs track for the competition.

“During the meets, there is no officiating. It is just you against the other runner,” Dugan said. “To be a good runner, you have to be dedicated.”

The runners who stick out to Coach Koenig are the ones who show up every day, put in the work, and take care of themselves.

“If all the athlete does is an hour and a half a day out here practicing, that is not enough to succeed,” Coach said. “The runner has to take care of himself by eating the right foods and getting enough sleep. I want guys who are represent themselves and their school very well.”

About Garrett Hallinan

Garrett is a sophomore and began writing for the Blackfriar Chronicle since his freshman year. He plays golf and intramural basketball for Malvern, and he sings in Malvern’s Men Chorus.

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