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Running a Sports Team

By: Bradley Kishiyama

Design Tech expanded its athletics program by adding track as a spring sport.

Photo by Evan Tung

Design Tech continues to race down its track to success. On February 14th, d.tech held its first ever track practice, which officially made it d.tech’s third spring sport, joining baseball and swimming. 24 d.tech students gathered on the Bay Trail to attend the inaugural track practice. “Everyone was excited for the start of the season and to try a new sport that d.tech had to offer,” sophomore Kate Hayashigatani said.

Sophomore Luis Obregon, the founder of the team, noticed one main problem with d.tech: its lack of athletic programs. “I felt like d.tech was missing something,” he said. “d.tech should have more sports, and I wanted track to be one of them.” Thus, Obregon started the track team hoping it would add to the variety of sports offered at d.tech. “Even though it’s technically a club right now,” Obregon said, “I’m definitely looking forward to making it a sport next year.”

With a new team comes a new coach. The d.tech track team brought in Sunny Diaz, an assistant track coach for Menlo College. Diaz is the Swiss Army Knife of track and field – he’s done it all. Diaz, who’s coached middle school, high school, and even college level track, has been coaching for nearly 20. He has hosted just a few d.tech practices so far, but expressed great joy in being a part of this new and developing team. He said, “I’m just so happy to organize the team for d.tech. It’s going to be a good challenge and it’ll allow me to share my knowledge and expertise.”

Some runners, however, are still adjusting to the new coaching. “I do miss Mr. Cooley. I’m not used to having another running coach besides Mr. Cooley so it’s a new experience,” Hayashigatani, a varsity d.tech cross country runner, said, “but Coach Diaz seems positive. He has a lot of belief in us.” Many high school cross country (a fall sport) runners join track in the spring to train for their upcoming season. d.tech is no exception, as cross country runners make up a large portion of the team. Cross country coach and math teacher Mr. Cooley says, “I’m glad that there’s an organized program that’s available for people to stay in shape. Anyone who’s serious about cross country needs to be running track, so having an organized team is a step in the right direction.”

While some track runners have cross country to motivate them to attend the two practices a week (Wednesday and Friday), others come up empty. Getting people to show up to the unusual practice schedule has been a tough issue to address  for Coach Diaz so far. “I don’t think track is in their hearts yet,” he says. “They’re no restrictions yet, there’s no really hard policy.”

Although many on the team speculate they will be unlikely to fulfil the “field” part of track and field, the team still seems very enthusiastic about the season, especially about the thought of possibly competing at an invitational. But Diaz doesn’t seem too worried about that. He broke d.tech track up into two parts: the present and the future. “It’s a building process” he said. “Our main goal for now is to invite and encourage kids to participate in the different events of track and field. However, in the long term, we should be able to see a team that will be competing in a track and field league.” While nobody knows when the team will accomplish his long term goal of competing in a league, it is clear that he is envisioning greatness for this team. “I’m seeing a lot of willingness and eagerness to work hard and train and a lot of potential to build a good track and field team.”

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