Q. What would you consider the highlight of your high school career?
A. Winning the 55m Hurdles All-State championship indoors my senior year. Placing second in the long jump at All-States outdoors with a huge PR is a close second.
Q. What was your most memorable performance?
A. The hurdles state championship definitely was my most memorable. I was coming off a huge choke at the divisional meet the week before where I should've easily won but had a nightmare final, finishing just 4th despite being the overwhelming favorite, and ended up in lane 2 at the AS prelims. That meet was more than just another meet. It was a shot at redemption, a shot at proving I could run and succeed despite the pressure. I don't really remember the race itself, but I distinctly remember looking to my right at the finish and seeing 2 other guys essentially in line with me. I had no idea who had won; it was too close to call from my point of view. The next 45+ seconds as we waited for the results to be posted felt like half an hour. But when my name popped up on the top of the list, I've never felt happier or more relieved in my life. That is the one single moment of my high school career that I will never forget.
Q. What was your most difficult obstacle to overcome?
A. I struggled with injuries during most of my outdoor seasons, especially senior year. I missed 3 weeks of training to a tweaked hamstring, and due to that along with a high ankle sprain on my lead leg, I only ran the high hurdles at 4 meets before the recurring ankle injury forced me to give them up at Divisionals. Not being able to run & compete is the worst feeling ever.
Q. What advice would you give to younger athletes?
A. Take care of your bodies. It is the most important tool you have. If you don't take care of it properly, whether or not you continue running, you'll still have to deal with the injuries and consequences of mistreating your body for the rest of your life.
Q. What will you miss most?
A. Due to the fact that I still see my former teammates & coaches, I'd have to say that I'll most miss competing and practicing at Reggie. It's gonna feel weird not running there every week. That place was like my 2nd home.
Q. What are your future plans?
A. I will be studying biomedical engineering with a concentration in biomechanics at Marquette University. I will also be running on the track & field team.
Q. What influence has your coach (or coaches) had with respect to your performance and overall life goals?
A. I have the respect in the world for my coaches and they were the ones who taught me how much of a difference doing the little things which many take for granted can make. I would not be where I am today without their tutelage.
A. Who would you like to say Thank You?
A full list would be far too long, so I'll try to simplify: My parents, my coaches, my teammates, past & present, my friends, CTF Clinic clinicians, my fellow competitors, my parents. Yes, I know I wrote my parents twice. That was intentional.
Spaghetti & Meatballs
Christophe Lemaitre/Aries Merritt
Favorite Sport other than running:
Volleyball. Grew up with the sport, still play for fun when I can.
*** This feature is intended to not only recognize some of our star athletes, but give recognition to our unsung heroes, too. If you are a coach, please pass this along to your team. If you are an athlete and a recent graduate, feel free to participate or send this to teammates and friends.