Taking a jump for State

Melissa Parra, Reporter

Kevin Szczepaniec takes the title of Indoor State Champ having competed in the Triple Jump event.

          On March 23, Kevin Szczepaniec (Div. 947) was named Indoor State Champion, taking first place in the Triple Jump event.

          Szczepaniec has been partaking in track and field for four years now. Transitioning from playing soccer, due to an injury to his ankle which kept him from continuing the season. He then turned to track and field to continue running to stay in shape (after soccer) and continue to compete.

          Taking up a new sport, he has come a long way receiving the title of City Champion in the 4 by 800 meter run, triple jump, and long jump events, just a week before Szczepaniec prepared for the State Championship.

          “It’s mostly, go to practice everyday, do your best job, and the other half is just to focus on it. You always have to be mentally prepared,” said Szczepaniec, when asked how he has been preparing for each event.

          Szczepaniec’s coaches are very proud for what Kevin has brought to the team. Displaying strong leadership and the push to make everyone better on the team.

          “It’s amazing, it’s the product of four years of hard work and dedication for him and it’s been a journey of learning for both him and I, as I learn how to coach the sport and him learning how be at a high level in his sport, its rewarding,” said Head Coach James Bleicher.

          Aside from taking such titles, Szczepaniec committed to Loyola University after taking time to think and examine what his best opportunity for college would be. Loyola gave him both academic and athletic scholarships.

          “Well first of all, it feels really good to know where my future is going to be at for the next four years, and I just felt the best connection with Loyola, especially with the team; the team really seemed nice,” said Szczepaniec.

          As the indoor season has ended, Szczepaniec and the rest of the track team move on to the outdoor season of track and field, as Szczepaniec aims for his goals to be a state champion for the outdoor season and have back to back titles in his event.

          Boys and Girls Track Teams are locked in and preparing to compete against the top schools at State.