The Huntington High School winter track and field team practiced and competed outdoors for the first time in decades due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It was a challenging experience, to say the least, but the Blue Devils actually managed to pick up five athletes during the season despite sometime frigid temperatures and tough overall conditions.
Coached by Eric Santos and Mark Jackson, the team started the season with 16 names on its roster, but concluded the year with 21. The best accomplishment? “Finishing the season healthy and in good spirits,” Santos said. “Still being competitive with all the restrictions and protocols was a major accomplishment.”
Junior Olivia Conte led the Blue Devils. “Olivia is a great athlete, hardworking and very coachable,” Santos said. “She’s a pleasure to be around.”
Analisse Batista, Caroline O’Rourke, Brianna Halbeisen, Erin Ye and Kiana Nosile rounded out the top performers in their respective events.
“Our team is determined to be great,” Santos said. “Our girls will be competitive in every aspect of the sport.”
The roster included eighth grader Elizabeth James; freshmen Amirah Beverly, Andrea Mani-Munoz, Damaris Mani-Munoz, Jannel Marroquin, Neurdia Osias; sophomores Talia Addeo, Sophie Bradford, Anaya Watkis; juniors Analisse Batista, Olivia Conte, Brianna Halbeisen, Junie Nosile, Kiana Nosile, Caroline O’Rourke, Erin Ye; seniors Gigi DeVoe, Marina Durand, Timmeree Koepele, Valerie Rogel, Ella Siepel and Alana Wallace.
Huntington UFSD arranged for the Blue Devil Stadium fieldhouse to be heated during the season so that the athletes go could inside it and warm themselves. The Blue Devils are hoping that next winter will see them resume indoor practices and competition.