A Bright Future for the Greyducks
As the team continues to show improvement year after year with an incredibly strong roster of underclassmen, the future of the Greyducks is looking exceptionally bright.
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The PSAL Borough Championships last week marked the end of yet another successful season for many of the Greyducks, Stuyvesant’s boys’ and girls’ outdoor track teams. Despite fluctuating weather conditions posing challenges to team practices, the Greyducks persevered. Both teams placed second overall in the Manhattan Borough Championships, falling just a few points behind Hunter College High School. This rivalry between the Greyducks and Hunter can be traced back to the indoor season in the winter, and the Greyducks’ defeat at Boroughs has only reinvigorated their drive to improve. “We were disappointed to go so close to winning Boroughs and to lose out by only a few points, but with City and [Frosh/Soph Championships] still to come, everyone is hoping to get another chance to run some fast times,” senior and distance captain Vernon Hughes said.
While the sprint teams had relatively slow starts to their seasons, both distance teams have thrived since their PSAL Season Opener on April 1. Sophomore Jamie Andersen won the sophomore boys’ 1600m with a time of 4:43, with sophomores Rayan Capanu and Filipos Kogiantis trailing closely behind. Freshman Raphael Ramot also dominated his 1600m event with a time of 4:50. In their team events, the boys’ A team won second place in the boys’ 4x800m with a time of 8:50, just nine seconds behind Hunter. The girls saw similar results in their events, as sophomores Skye McArthur and Emily Li won second and fifth place in the 1500m with times of 5:30 and 5:49, respectively. Furthermore, the girls’ A team won second place in the varsity 4x800m with a time of 10:44.
The teams stayed on their winning streak at the Bob Zifchak Classic. Though the sprinters once again fell behind in their individual events, they excelled in the team events. The freshman boys won second place in the freshman 4x100m with a time of 51.75 seconds, and the varsity A team won fifth in their 4x100m with a time of 47.69 seconds. Sophomore Snow Krigh demonstrated his versatility and skill across multiple events, running 55.69 seconds to finish 14th place in the 400m and winning second place in the long jump. On the other hand, the distance teams displayed their consistency, earning similar results as previous competitions. Andersen notably won second place in the varsity boys’ 1600m, finishing with a time of 4:31––a 10-second improvement––that was just half a second behind first place. These incredible performances from the young runners are the result of a variety of factors in their new training plan. Both the sprint and distance captains created weekly training routines on shared resources like Strava that team members could use to track progress. However, it ultimately all boils down to hard work and a passion for the sport, which is clearly present among the Greyducks community.
Both teams fought hard at the PSAL Borough Championships last week, seeking to end off their season, and for many seniors their high school track careers, on a positive note. Senior and sprint captain Ayron Thomas blew his competition out of the water, winning first place in the varsity boys’ 100m, 200m, and 400m in an astonishing display of skill. Fellow senior and sprint captain Qi Guang Zhu won first place in the boys’ 110m hurdles with a time of 16.31 seconds, followed by junior Vincent D’Angelo. Freshman Emma Savonije won third place in the girls’ 800m race, while seniors Isabella Stenhouse and Pimada Phongsuriya scored big in both the 1500m and 3000m events. Sophomore hurdler Niamh Werner won both the 100m hurdle and 400m hurdle events with times of 18.46 and 1:12, respectively. “The season has gone well, especially for our underclassmen. A lot of them joined the team during cross country or indoor track and were still learning the ropes, and now they are seeing the benefits of their hard work in races,” Hughes said. Considering that running rewards effort and consistency over natural talent, this prior experience from previous seasons was crucial to this season’s improvement.
For other runners like sophomore Chenming Fang, the meet served as an opportunity to prove their skill to both themselves and their peers. Fang suffered a devastating foot injury following the cross-country season in November, an unfortunate reminder of the risks involved in participating in such a high-intensity sport. After being forced to watch from the sidelines in a boot and crutches for over four months as his body recovered, Fang finally made his return to the track in mid-March with a burning desire to redeem himself. This desire would be fulfilled at the Borough Championships, where Fang ran a time of 5:12 in the 1600m and set his first PR in the event since the 2022 outdoor season. “I’m just happy to be back. This race was definitely a turning point for me, and I’m really excited for where I will go with this team,” Fang said.
His success is just another reminder of how far hard work and dedication can get you in the sport and has served as an inspiration to the team to better themselves every day. “If Chenming was able to come back from injury and [set a personal record], then we really have no excuse not to do the same,” sophomore distance runner Tim Ng said.
The leadership of the highly talented and supportive captains of the teams, as well as the athletes’ unrelenting work ethics, have definitely been making a difference in their times since previous seasons. The Greyducks hope to carry this success through to the summer, with City Championships taking place next Sunday, and [Frosh/Soph] championships on June 1 and June 4. Between the team’s continuous improvement and the strong roster of upperclassmen, the future of the Greyducks is looking exceptionally bright. As the team is forced to say goodbye to many of their fastest runners and closest friends, they look forward to a future of success under a new generation of Greyducks.