The Champs of Queens Champs

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Math teacher and girls track coach Timothy Connor refers to the Queens Champs track meet as “our superbowl.”   If that is true then we have a winner: at the February 17 event, Townsend Harris left the Armory with a first place plaque for the girls team and a third place plaque for the boys team, the teams together bringing home over 40 medals.

The Townsend Harris girls team faced competition from Springfield Gardens and Cardozo High School, while the boys were met with Francis Lewis and Forest Hills.

The meet began with the 3000m run for the girls and the 3200m run for the guys.  These races require mental tenacity and the ability to pace oneself smartly throughout the 15-16 laps around the 200m track.  Maria Mahin, junior, and Katie Kang, senior and captain, placed second and third. Junior Linda Wu and senior Judith Suzuki placed sixth and seventh.

Judith was “most excited for the 3000m race” and though she knows she “may not have run like an Olympian” she proudly declared that she “gave it [her] all.” Knowing that this is her last indoor race as a senior, Judith said, “I’m proud to have made it all four years, but I cannot ignore the sadness that comes with the fact that I won’t be able to cheer on my teammates in their future races.”

In the boys division, senior Isaac Pulatov and sophomore Yash Sharma were both able to win points for their team by placing in third and sixth respectively.   About the meet, Yash said “it was well over my expectations” and “a great ending to indoor track.”

In the 55m high hurdles, Ivy Lam, freshman, was second in the trials with a time of 10.03 seconds, allowing her to continue into the finals where she placed sixth.  Senior Thomas Mulligan and junior Harry Quinn both advanced to the hurdles finals.

Townsend Harris saw two medalers in the 1000m run – Sarah Iqbal, sophomore, and Yasmeen Ally, freshman.  Yasmeen was the Borough Champion in this event and qualified for City Championships.

In the 1500m racewalk, Townsend Harris has always dominated, and this year, the team placed first through eighth (a sweep) and will also be sending six racewalkers to City Championships.

Senior Katie Kang and junior Sophia Mahin  both raced the previous day in the 106th Millrose Games, a prestigious indoor track and field event.   Despite this, they still won first and second place at Queens Champs.

Tahsin Akanda, junior, who set a personal record with a time of 8:37, notes that “this team’s performance really reflects all the effort that everyone put in despite FON, clubs, and natural disasters” and says that “the captains’ leadership and everyone’s team spirit as a whole brought everyone together in realizing that we are more capable of things than we think.”

In order to measure the team’s personal success, Mr. Connor often tells the girls team to ask themselves at the end of their race, “was it the best race you could’ve run?” Their performance at Queens Champs leaves no doubt as to the answer to that question.