Elvis Forde said his women’s track & field team needs to earn its grade.
The Owls swiped two first-place finishes at the Princeton Tiger Open on Saturday, a small step in a season of transition and evaluation.
“I think we are still in the middle of the pack,” Forde said. “I know we had some good performances, [but] I think we are still at a C+ for the time being. I am going to be cautious of my grading and be one of those teachers that say, ‘Hey, we have to earn our grade’ and so far we have a C+.’ So far, of the three weekends we have had, we do a little bit better every weekend, and this weekend was volume for that.”
Junior Demeshia Davis brought in the Owls’ sole individual win with her time of 25.57 seconds in the 200-meter dash. Davis was also part of the first-place 4×400-meter relay along with Bionca St. Fleur, Hollis Coleman and Kenya Gaston with a time of 3 minutes, 54.36 seconds.
Davis said dissatisfaction with her times from the Terrapin Invitational last weekend motivated her performance this week. She also said when her teammates perform well, she feels the need to do the same.
“I feel like coming off of last week, I wasn’t really happy with my performance,” Davis said. “So, this week it was really just about doing what I know how to do and not think too much, and just make sure I have the best day I can have. Seeing my other teammates win obviously drives me to do better. It really just makes me hungry for a better performance.”
Davis also said that the team works as one unit, thriving off one another in order to perform better.
“We all feed off of each other week by week, and even day by day at practice, that is really what it is all about,” Davis said. “Since it’s so early, I just plan on getting faster and faster as the season goes on. I really want to focus on executing my race and just going through the little things that coach Forde told me to fix, I feel like it will definitely help me in all of my races to come.”
Other notable performances included senior Hollis Coleman’s third-place mark of 25.76 in the 200, a personal-best time. Sophomore Bionca St. Fleur took fourth in the same event in 25.84.
Senior Michelle Davis-Timothy and graduate-senior Nicole Cummings did not compete in the meet due to injury.
Forde said he understands his role as the coach is to continue to push his team to achieve more, and also said he looks forward to raising the intensity during weekly practices.
“We as the coaches [are] the ones that have to keep talking them up and motivating them and trying to show them that we can’t leave any stones unturned during the course of the training,” Forde said. “I just want to help them to realize that they have to raise the intensity at practice.”
Tyler DeVice can be reached at email@example.com.