When the Greyducks, Stuyvesant’s boys’ track team, set out on this year’s outdoor track season, they were aiming for another Borough Championship. After a long and arduous season, the team succeeded, winning for the 18th consecutive year. It was not easy, as recently, Stuyvesant has faced fierce opposition from schools such as Hunter and the High School of Math Science and Engineering. However, the team was able to dominate once again.
Sprinters Sam Jung, Eric Cao, and Alex Schevshenko each placed first in their respective events. Schevshenko also set a school record in his first place 100-meter run with a time of 11.11 seconds. The team also came in first in two of its relays, the 4×100-meter relay and the 4×400-meter relay. The distance runners also triumphed with seniors and co-captains Greg Dudick and Kiyan Tavangar finishing first in the 3200-meter run and the 800-meter run respectively.
One reason for this major victory was the team’s physical preparation. Throughout the year, the team held indoor and outdoor workouts designed to challenge everyone’s physical and mental limits. It was here the Greyducks learned how to succeed. Senior and co-captain Noah Fichter said, “I think ultimately it comes down to the fact that our workouts are incredibly difficult, but everyone does them, and everyone does them with 100 percent of their energy.” In addition, Tavangar said, “Barely anyone has been missing practices, and everyone has been setting personal bests.” This combination of attendance and effort fueled yet another championship.
Besides preparation throughout the year, much of their success can be attributed to game day planning and strategy. “We spent hours planning out who to put in each event to score as many points as possible and block as many points as possible,” Fichter said. Similarly, Tavangar said, “Preparation always starts the night before, making sure we eat well and get a solid amount of sleep.” While many observers may think that the Greyducks only succeed because they happen to have the most athletic team, much more mental preparation goes on before each meet than meets the eye.
With all of these positives leading to their success, Stuyvesant has overcome a few setbacks this season in order to once again be champions of the borough. Numerous events have been rained out this season. This has given Stuyvesant’s runners less practice in competitive situations. In addition, the Greyducks added Coach Mankit Wong to the team, who has less experience than their previous coach, Coach Jeffrey Teta. However, Wong quickly became adjusted to the new sport and was a very effective coach. To help with this process, Teta still volunteered his time to help the runners during practices and games. Together, the two coaches proved to be an effective duo this season and led the team to victory.
At the end of the year, the Greyducks will lose their seniors, many of whom are vital members and act as leaders of the team. However, for the remaining members, Fichter said, “They certainly have the potential to take the team further than we have gone in past years, but they’re going to have to make adjustments.” When asked about who the team will rely on for next year, Tavangar acknowledged juniors Matt Fairbanks, Minhein Htet, Jesse Sit, Alex Schevchenko and Thomas Thread will need to step up. If the Greyducks continue their thorough preparation for their events and can execute on gameday, it is only a matter of time before we see them back on the podium at the Manhattan Borough Championships.