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St. Joe’s track and field in comfortable position

With quality performances across the board, the St. Joe’s track and field team is off to a 3-0 great start under head coach Matt Hellerer.

“Things have been going very well,” said Hellerer. “I’m very optimistic right now.”

The Marauders’ have young throwers and jumpers but have been getting solid contributions from their athletes in the circles and pits, respectively. The distance runners have been pulling their weight as well. St. Joe’s has a very deep and talented roster, but the strength of this team has been in the sprint department.

A big reason behind the sprinters success is Lawrence Williams. The senior sprinter has been coming up big for the Marauders this season in the 100 and 400 meter dashes.

“Lawrence is just running out of his skull right now,” professed Hellerer. “He’s very talented physically, but, more important than that, he is very, very competitive. He’s very aggressive. He loves to compete and he loves to win.”

Williams isn’t the only senior that has stepped up for St. Joe’s this year. The Marauders have been getting big performances from the likes of Connor Tumiel, Justin Benzino and Charlie Grochowiak.

Tumiel and Benzino have been leading the way in the 400 and 800 meter runs, while Grochowiak has been making a name for himself in the middle-distance races.

These seniors have provided even more value to the team than just winning races and scoring points; they bring a strong sense of leadership.

“They’re enthusiastic leaders,” Hellerer said of his seniors. “Because of their enthusiasm they have this charisma about them. The other kids just naturally follow their lead. I don’t have to worry about the guys warming up, having their uniforms, staying hydrated or showing up ready to compete. It’s great having seniors like that on the team.”

The Marauders have also gotten contributions from the younger athletes, as well. Possibly the most impressive of the bunch is freshman Anthony Belfatto, who has had one of the best times in the 3200 meter race in Western New York this season.

“Anthony is a furiously aggressive freshman,” exclaimed Hellerer. “He just loves to compete. He can’t get enough of it. I have to put the reins on him to stop him from running because he loves to run so much.”

St. Joe’s is in a very comfortable position at this point in the season. Judging from the amount of success the Marauders have had, it’s hard to find something that needs change in the day-to-day routine.

Hellerer feels the most important point of emphasis that needs to be stressed from here on out is for his athletes to keep their self-assurance.

St. Joe’s faced its biggest test on the track and in the field, though, this week against defending All-Catholics champion St. Francis.

“I would say the main thing for us is to stay confident,” said Hellerer. “We have worked very well, we’ve had great practices and have had great training. Everybody is healthy at this point.

“And if we can say healthy and if we can just know how good we are; if we can just concentrate and live up to our potential we will be in good shape,” he added.
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