From Grosse Ile, Michigan, Gold Medal winner Abby King has been playing soccer for as long as she can remember.
Varsity Season Record: 39-5
Captains: Max Borrmann ’16, Ajay Dakappagari ’16
Athletic Awards: Most Valuable Athlete: Justus Harris ’16 and Tim Lund ’16; Most Improved Athlete: Wajdi Ahemed ’17; Coaches Award: Ajay Dakappagari ’16 and Danny Mylott ’17; Carl Basnett Award: Max Borrmann ’16
The boys track and field team added another winning season to the books, beating 39 of 44 teams this season and finishing with a 39-5 record. Having a winning season is an exceptional accomplishment for any team, but for Coach Gerard Manoli, it’s not all about winning and trophies. “The highlights for me are watching the athletes celebrate their victories and watching them support each other and improve each week. What I like about winning is being able to watch the athletes hoist the trophy and come home to ring the bell; that’s fun for me.”
With 73 athletes, each working hard in their respective events, the boys track and field team won some memorable meets. They were the champions at the Berlin Center WR Relays, Cuyahoga Heights Relays and most notably, the 60th annual Longstreth Relays held on the WRA campus, a competition they had not won in more than 20 years. They also were the runner up at the Perry Relays.
There were a few athletes that shined above the rest this season, including the Most Improved Athlete Wajdi Ahemed ’17, who made incredible strides in the shot and discus. “Last year, Wajdi did not score a single point. This year, he was our number one shot putter and discus thrower, and the third leading scorer, improving over 30 feet in the discus. His throw of 45’ 7” is the best shot put by a WRA thrower in over 15 years. That is incredible improvement,” said Manoli during the 2016 spring Athletic Awards ceremony.
Four-year letter winners, Ajay Dakapaggari ’16 (Coaches Award recipient) and Max Borrmann ’16 (Carl Basnett Award winner) led the team with their outstanding commitment, dedication and leadership on and off the track. “The Carl Basnett Award is Max to the T,” said Manoli, speaking of Borrmann’s loyalty to the team and demonstration of all the finest ideals of a WRA track and field athlete.
The backbone of the team’s success and leading scorers, Justus Harris ’17 and Tim Lund ’16, were named the Most Valuable Players this season. With Harris’ long jump and explosive sprinting ability and Lund’s all-around success in just about any event, the team counted on these two to put the Pioneers at the top of the scoreboard each meet.
Wajdi Ahemed ’17, Ian Israelson ’17 and Danny Mylott ’17 have been named the 2017 captains.