PA Track Club preps for Odessa

Published 10:30 pm Wednesday, June 22, 2016

The Port Arthur Track Club Flyers once again is gearing up for the regional meet.
This year the club is going to send at least 66 athletes to Odessa. The number could grow up to 77 after another round of qualifying meets before the regional meet on July 5.
“That is the most I have ever seen since 2000,” team coach Gerald Armstrong said.
This year’s team has participants of all ages and sizes. Port Arthur Memorial incoming junior Gregory LaDay is one of the guys ready to compete.
LaDay was on the Titans 4×100 relay team that participated in the Class 6A Track and Field Championships in May.
He will compete in Odessa in the 4×100 relay, 100 dash, 200 dash and 4×400 relay.
“I just want to help my team make it to the Junior Olympics,” LaDay said. “I have been working on my drive phase and getting out the blocks. Helping my team is a great thing and helping them succeed.”
Anya Duhon, an incoming sophomore, was out in the heat Wednesday with her team preparing for regionals. She will compete in the 200 dash and the 4×100 relay.
“I have had a lot of fun out here,” Duhon said. “It has been a lot of work but I have been having fun. It has been real hot and hard. You have to push through it.
“Being out here keeps you in condition and get others out here. You have to be dedicated to go farther and be a great athlete.”
Armstrong said the team will spend five days in Odessa and the amount of kids has put a burden on the funds he had available for hotel rooms.
“We are extremely proud,” Armstrong said. “I went from 12 to 22 rooms. That is the tough part. If we could get some help and someone could send us a contribution that would be a blessing.”
Armstrong said the club has an account at Port Arthur Teacher Credit Union.
Zykirra Caearras is training to compete in the 100 dash, 200 dash and the 4×100 relay.
“It has been hard,” Caearras said. “I have been pushing through it. Track was natural. My first time doing track was in 2011 and my parents said I had the natural talent. Now I am addicted to it. This isn’t something I ever thought I would be doing it when I was younger.”
Caearras had some advice for athletes to beat the heat.
“Drink water before you get out here,” Caearras said. “At least two to four bottles.”

Gabriel Pruett: 721-2436. Twitter: @PaNewsGabe

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About Gabriel Pruett

Gabriel Pruett has worked with both the Port Arthur News and Orange Leader since 2000. A majority of the time has been spent covering all aspects of Southeast Texas high school sports. Pruett's claim to fame is...being able to write his own biographical information for this website.

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