Revere Runners Finish Strong in League

The Paul Revere Middle School track and field team finished its season on May 10 at the Delphic League finals, held at Oaks Christian School in Westlake Village.

The boys team finished third behind Laurel Hall and Harvard-Westlake, while the girls team placed fourth.

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Eighth graders Dylan Lambert, Dante Baldecchi, Mark Barbosa and Tomas Espana paced the boys team by winning the 4×400 relay. The foursome, who set a school record in the event (3:59.2) earlier this year, clocked in at 4:02.54.

Lambert captured the 800-meter crown (2:18.64), while Baldecchi won the 400 (55.96) and Barbosa finished second in the 1600 meters.

Baldecchi and Lambert teamed up with Eli Safai and Joey Seidman to take second in the 4×100 relay. Safai, an eighth grader, also posted fourth-place finishes in the 100-meter dash and the high jump.

Lila Copeland had the highest finish on the girls team with a second (5:25.84) in the 1600. Copeland won Paul Revere’s annual cross-country run by running the 1.5-mile distance in 8:15.8. Her time shattered the school record of 8:37, set in 2011 by current UC Berkeley freshman track standout Marissa Williams.

Sarah Bentley finished fifth in the 1600 (5:42.21) and third in the 800 (2:36.06). The 4×100 relay team of Lara Doran, Elisa Kim, Kiara Bremner and Alondra Magana finished third.

The Delphic League is comprised of 10 private middle schools. Paul Revere, the only public school, joined the conference five years ago.

Revere’s head coach, Paul Foxson, encourages his athletes to pursue track and field when they reach high school. He says that Delphic League competition is good preparation for high school meets.

“Walt Stewart from Chaminade and Jonas Koolsbergen from Harvard-Westlake were in charge of [the meets] this year. They run a phenomenally tight ship as far as the meets go. After the kids have been through this a series of times, the transition to high school is not as big a deal. I feel like it puts them at ease when they’re getting ready to go to high school.”

Foxson, who was a two-time All-American in the decathlon at the University of North Carolina, attributes his team’s success to the athletes’ motivation.

He and the other Revere PE teachers began a T-shirt program known as the Super Hero program that provides incentives for students to improve their fitness.

“The running is an easy way to set a goal and reach it,” Foxson said. “It’s an amazing way to work out and we’re trying to teach the kids to have a life-long love for fitness. The incentive has to be there and sometimes just improving for yourself maybe isn’t enough, so we added in the component of now, ‘Hey, not only do you get this cool shirt, but it’s a status thing.’”

There are six kinds of shirts that students can win in the Super Hero program, and they are awarded for performances in things that range from running a mile in under six minutes to climbing a pole 10 times within five minutes. The program has become so popular that students use their free time during Friday PE class to train.

Paul Revere will begin summer break on June 10, but Foxson and his athletes are already thinking ahead. “We’ve got a few kids who have asked me about summer meets. The goal is for me to get more kids out for track and cross country. I really gauge whether or not we were successful by how many kids have achieved personal bests and how many records we broke at school.”

Palisades News Intern

Sarah Bentley (left) and Miranda Schriver (right) in the 1600M race. Photo: Molly Sigworth

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