WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — Nicole Bartosch and Sophia Calidonna waited patiently for their heat placements for the low hurdles event at Friday's 45th Glenn D. Loucks Memorial Track & Field Games as the Yorktown duo began their five-event pentathlon challenge.
"After you've tried all the different track events you consider doing the pentathlon, which is a big commitment," said Bartosch, a junior Husker. "I enjoy the different aspects of the fields event — the jumps — and Sophia is strong in the running events. We both find the 800 meters the toughest part."
The pentathlon includes sprint hurdles, high jump, long jump, shot put and 800-meter run to end the grueling run of events. Calidonna, a sophomore, is learning the ropes from her junior mentor.
Bartosch and Calidonna finished eight and ninth overall respectively in a field of 21 athletes. Bartosch scored a total of 2,582 points and Calidonna scored 2,548.
"At first the event was a little but more difficult because I wasn't familiar with the other athletes," Calidonna said. "Nicole lets me know the strong points of the other competitors and how to approach the events. I'm learning how to adjust to each part of the event."
The Loucks Games are one of the largest independent, on-campus scholastic track and field gatherings in the nation. This year’s games include a record 2,950 athletes representing 337 male and female teams from 221 schools.
Both girls say they try to get in as much running and skills training as possible, concentrating on getting as many points in each event as possible, especially for events such as the Loucks Games.
"This sport keeps you in shape just being involved in practices and meets," Bartosch said. "We both try to eat right and do the right things."
Calidonna said her family are health food lovers, so she has no problem staying fit.
"Pentathlon is just a great event because you use all the muscles and have to have endurance for that 800, and you want to prepared for that," Calidonna said. "I think being with Nicole as helped me a lot."
The Loucks Games continue Saturday at 9 a.m. with ceremonies at noon and a full slate of events in the afternoon.