CARBONDALE (WSIL) -- In 2019, Carbondale boys and girls track teams won a South Seven Conference Championship. The expectations were high entering the spring of 2020.
"On the girls side, we have a history of, a tradition of success over the last decade or so," Carbondale Track Coach Stephen Arvanis said. "It seems like every year, we don't have a whole lot of girls on the team but the girls we do have bring this fire and passion that they want to be the best and will stop at nothing to accomplish that and it's intoxicating to watch."
That switch is definitely when I hear the gun," Carbondale senior sprinter Zoie Saunders said. "It's like, alright it's go time."
The Lady Terriers track team enteresd this spring as reigning conference champions. They value those bragging rights.
"A lot of us have been running together since middle school, so that connection, knowing how each other runs or how we do certain things made it come together piece by piece."
"We trusted each other and always on top of things so when it came to success I figured and I knew that when we started that we'd have a good team and be successful," Carbondale senior sprinter Akira Custer said.
"We have a lot to prove," Saunders said. "Just because it happened once doesn't mean it will happen again so as a team we like to prove we are the best and keep showing we are the best."
Akira Custer will get to continue to run, she's taking her talents to SIU.
"Getting that opportunity was something I wanted to go for," Custer said. "When I got the opportunity, I was very excited and for it to be in my own back yard is even more exciting because I love SIU and their track team is very good, so to be a part of that is something I really loved," Custer said.
"The guys team is just a couple years behind where the girls are, Arvanis said. "We beat Marion for the first time in a long time last year and we are looking forward to competing at the state level as well."
"We wanted to build off of what the girls already done because my freshman year I think we finished third in conference I want to say, it was a rough year for us but we got a bunch of new and younger guys coming in last year especially has been realy solid so we've been trying to build off that," Carbondale junior long distance runner Tucker Poshard said.
Only one senior graduates from the boys side. Next year Tucker Poshard paces the team in long distance and Jackson Grant provides strength in the shot put.
"Hundred meters in, it's just a sprint," Poshard said. "And they'll get in front of you and since there are no lanes they'll cut right in front of you and you right on their back and I don't want to run behind you this whole time so it's an all like an all out battle, I just try to be in the front."
"Try to clear my mind before I throw," Grant said. "It's hard because you want good technique but you still want to be explosive so its about good body control and getting a good release so you can be explosive."