This past weekend, the GSB Track & Field team traveled to Philadelphia to compete in one of the United States’ most heralded competitions. The trip did not disappoint.
Founded in 1895, The Penn Relays is the world’s first and largest track and field competition and the national’s longest uninterrupted collegiate meet. Top high school and college athletes from around the world come together to compete in the heralded event each year with their eyes set on breaking world records. This year, teams from 32 different states were represented as well as international athletes from Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, Guyana, Jamaica, and Trinidad.
Following a stellar end to his indoor track & field career, senior captain Joe Licata stepped up big at the High School Boys’ Shot Put Championship. With a throw of 61-6.25, the All-American placed 3rd overall and #1 in the United States. In Penn Relays tradition, Joe received a gold watch for placing as the first American individual.
“It felt great to compete at such a historic place,” said Licata. “To be surrounded by so much track and field culture was incredible.”
The Knights were well represented at this year’s competition as athletes competed in several events.
Juliana Holmes, Aniyah Boston, Samantha Leo, Kellyn Bucceri placed 7th in their 4x100 relay heat with a time of 57.53, while Drew Vollrath, Will Engleke, Peter Horton, and Laksh Patel placed 9th in their 4x100 relay heat with a time of 50.72.
"The Penn Relays was such an incredible experience," commented senior captain Kellyn Bucceri.
"The field of competition was filled with some of the most impressive athletes from all over the US, Jamaica, the Bahamas, Guyana, Puerto Rico, and Trinidad. Competing in the meet was such a memorable and surreal moment. Hearing the gun go off, then watching each of my teammates run their leg and hand off the baton to the next runner, and finally getting the baton from Sam and crossing the finish line. I am so proud of the team for all the hard work we have put in. The most memorable moment was sitting in a section of Jamaican fans; the passion for their athletes and the energy they gave was insane; they had horns and noisemakers and filled the stadium with so much enthusiasm."