Big Results in the Big Apple for the Walls Track Team
Reia Stock-Heard runs at the Armony Hispanic Games / Credits: Nadia Lytle (‘25)
In January, SWW’s 33-person track team traveled to New York City to compete at The Armory Hispanic Games, a meet that hosted over 5,000 athletes from across the Northeast. SWW runners left with big results, placing highly and breaking records.
On the girls side, several performances stood out. The 4x400-meter relay team, composed of Olivia Waymer (‘24), Reia Stock-Heard (‘27), Kaylee Simon (‘25), and Charlotte Tama (‘24), finished in 5th place overall. In addition, the relay team’s time beat the 4x400-meter school record by 7 seconds and qualified them for Nike Indoor Nationals, an invite-only meet limited to the top athletes from across the country.
Waymer, a team captain, placed third in the 55-meter hurdles, breaking both her personal best and the Walls record. Nadia Lytle (‘25), a standout thrower on the team, placed third in girls shot put. Both also qualified for Nike Indoor Nationals.
Additionally, new talent shone brightly. “The new freshmen on the team are so awesome,” Waymer said. One such freshman was Stock-Heard, who team manager Heather Lytle called “MVP of the weekend.” In her first ever high school meet, Stock-Heard came in first in the 55-meter dash and third in the 400-meter dash, and also contributed to the 4x400 relay team’s strong performance. “She surprised us all with her outstanding achievements,” Ms. Lytle said.
On the boys side, Elijah Lott (‘25) placed 3rd in the 1 mile, setting a new school record with a stellar time of 5:01. He was also part of the boys 4x400 team, whose performance came close to setting a school record. Lott credits the team’s success to hard work throughout the season. “I'm seeing people dedicating themselves to the team,” he said.
With these and other strong performances, the team left New York holding DCIAA season records in 7 events.
On top of their big results, many team members shared how fun the weekend was as a whole. “The atmosphere at The Armory was electric and was definitely felt on the track,” Lott said. “From what I saw, no one competed without a crowd of Walls teammates cheering them on.”
In addition, the trip was a valuable bonding experience for the team. The day before the meet, the team visited the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island together before exploring Times Square in smaller groups later that night. “The team felt more social this year,” Waymer said.
Looking towards the season ahead, the team hopes to continue their success at DCIAA and state meets. “I'm confident that we’ll put on a show at the city, state, and eventually national level,” Lott said.
However, so far, the team hasn’t been given much of a stage. Due to construction at PG Sports and Learning Complex, all three of the scheduled DCIAA developmental meets have been canceled.
As construction wraps up, the running penguins look towards DCIAA championships and DCSAA states as a chance to extend their success from The Armory. “After New York, I just feel that this is really gonna be a great season,” Waymer said.