Eighteen years old

April 29, 2020

After joining the varsity team her freshman year and breaking numerous records, Meiner began this year’s season 20 points away from being the highest scoring track athlete in school history.

“It’s about scoring points for your team,” Meiner said. “If I can score points for my team in all five events, I’m going to do it.”

I think that everything happens for a reason. I learned valuable lessons in my track career and I want to keep those lessons going forward.”

— Maddie Meiner, 12

This record didn’t matter to her as much as her main goal — state.

Meiner had her sights set on state this year while helping her team as much as possible. She wanted to go as far as possible in all five of her events — shot put, high jump, long jump and 100 and 300 meter hurdles.

At the second meet of the season on Feb. 29 at Coppell High School, Meiner became the highest scoring track athlete in school history. Winning first place in high jump pushed her over with ten points.

It was only when the coaches told her that she realized what had happened, because it wasn’t her goal for this year. Her goal was state. At midnight when the busses brought them back to school they were all exhausted. They waved goodbye as they got in their cars saying they would see each other at school tomorrow.

Two weeks later, the Hebron Hawk meet was rained out so they sat in the cafeteria for their track period, but something else was on everyone’s mind. Coronavirus. Head coach Steve Telaneus stood on the stage telling the athletes about how things were up in the air and how they should keep practicing.

After he spoke the seniors sat down together at a lunch table. Sharing stories, shedding tears and telling each other how much they would miss track with each other.

Weeks later when Meiner found out track was suspended she was hurt. She had been running track since she was 6 and on the school’s track team all four years of high school. When she didn’t make it to the state level she made that her goal for her senior year. Now because of things out of her control this opportunity was taken away from her.

Photo submitted by Maddie Meiner
Senior Maddie Meiner (far right) is in the lead as she runs a hurdle event at a meet.

“The first thought was why did this have to happen during my senior year but at the end of the day there’s other people being affected way worse than a track season coming to an end,” Meiner said.

Although Meiner grew up on the track and now her time is cut short, she is grateful for her and her family’s health in these uncertain times. Despite losing her chance to go to state she still remains positive and is grateful for her time in track.

“I think that everything happens for a reason. I learned valuable lessons in my track career and I want to keep those lessons going forward,” Meiner said.

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