Coach Kelly Deegan and her speedsters returned from The New Balance Indoor Track & Field National Championships this weekend. And New York City might have become the track team’s favorite city to compete in as the Bulldogs’ 4X800-meter relay team .
The four-man relay team, which consists of Max Chambers, Nathan Kiley, Tyrone Walker and Jeffrey Edmondson, was granted All-American status after running the second fastest time (7:45:51) in state history. The young men also eclipsed ’s previous record by three seconds.
“It meant a lot to them, it was their goal and they did it,” said Deegan of her boys’ 4X800 relay’s performance. “Each one of them stepped up to cut some time. They broke the school record from 2004, and the kids who set that record in ‘04 were national champions.”
The boys’ indoor team enjoyed success on a consistent basis throughout the season and into the postseason. Deegan said her two national relay teams (4X400, 4X800) progressed at each meet and set a goal to get to nationals.
“They were undefeated all season and they just kept it going,” she said. “When you get to the postseason you try to improve your time and you’re running on a good track.”
Individually, Justin Little, Tony Richardson, Brenden Wallace and Nathan Kiley were just some who also garnered individual success. Richardson’s shot put was strong all year as he went on to win districts, while Kiley broke a record in the 500, and Little became a huge asset as a jumper.
“Justin Little, as a jumper, did a really good job and came on to score the points when we needed them,” Deegan said. “He came up huge on his last triple jump to be the regional champion. I think the whole group of boys who went to regionals decided it was their goal and they all just did what they needed to do. I wouldn’t say we had one superstar—they just kept building on what they were trying to do all season.”
While Westfield will lose “slightly under half” of the team to graduation this June, Walker is the only national competitor leaving the team. But Deegan said she is excited about freshman prospects such as Wallace, and their future on the team.
“I think we have a strong representation from our freshmen and we are pretty thrilled to have Brenden,” she said regarding next season.
She said she and the entire boys’ squad is in support of the girls’ rebuilding and becoming more competitive in 2013.
“I’m sure we have the athletes, it’s just a question of getting them to come out for the sport,” Deegan said.
Coach Deegan now readies herself and her athletes for the spring outdoor season, which begins on March 28 at .