This past weekend, the women’s team traveled up to Middlebury for its first championship meet of the indoor season, the New England Division III Championships, where the Cardinals had a few big performances. Alexis Walker ’16 just missed out on first place in the long jump, coming in second with a leap of 18’ 3.25”, only 1.25” off the winning mark. In the 400m dash, Ananya Subrahmanian ’18 ran a personal best of 59.25 to capture fourth place.
Jenny Aguiar ’19 was unbeaten in her last three races, and not even the steep competition at the championship meet could stop her streak. She took the victory in the 600m to give the Cardinals their only win of the day. Aguiar also ran the 4x400m relay with Subrahmanian, Sarah Swenson ’18, and Alexandra Dibrindisi ’19, where they combined for a fourth place showing by crossing the line in 4:04.92.
The Argus sat down with Aguiar to talk about her big season, what her goals are for the rest of the year, and her favorite parts of Wesleyan Track and Field.
The Argus: What’s it like being a first-year on the team?
Jenny Aguiar: It’s really fun going from being a senior captain in high school and then starting again as the underdog of sorts, following all these big seniors. It’s really fun being a freshman. I feel like there’s a lot less pressure, but I’m also excited about the potential of the team.
A: You’ve had a great season so far and have won a lot of races. How have you stepped into the role of a difference-maker?
JA: It’s an honor to be a freshman and to have people want you to do well. It’s awesome to have people to expect a lot from you and believe in you. It makes me feel very important to the team.
A: What is it like having so many people who are good at your event, and how does that help in training?
JA: We all push each other. I train in mid-distance, and the other three 4×400 [runners] train in sprinting. So I watch the three of them run together in such a pack and push each other, but I run with the mid-distance girls because I don’t have much endurance as a long sprinter. I have quick speed, but I’m not that strong. So I asked to be moved up to mid-distance to train with them, but it’s been awesome to have people to train with and work together.
A: What’s your favorite event?
JA: I don’t know, because I really love anything from the 60m to the 600m, and outdoors, I like the 400 hurdles, but it’s a little frustrating to train for. For indoors, I would say the 600 is my favorite because it’s a fast sprint, not really a mid-distance event.
A: Tell me about your race this past week?
JA: I went seeded fourth, and I was so nervous because the number one seed had this ridiculous time. But I really just tried to get as amped up as possible and try to get my mind right and know that anything is possible. Last year, Ellie Martin [’16] won this race, and I wanted to meet that standard. The first lap, I just tried to take off as fast as I could, and I remember coming to the turn, and I was in first place, and I thought I was going to die. Then, I felt the Middlebury runner right next to me, and I heard her breathe, and I just went with her. We were going back and forth all race, but I had the lead, and I just didn’t let it go. Then I gave it my all the last lap and basically collapsed at the line.
A: What’s coming up for you the next few weeks?
JA: This weekend, we have Open New Englands where I’m running the 4×400, and then the week after is ECACs where I’m running the 400m, and if I qualify for Nationals, then I would run the 400m there as well.
A: What are your goals for the next few weeks?
JA: I would like to go as far as I can and make it to Nationals and just not settle for any meet. I really don’t like the mentality of ‘you’re just a freshman, you have so much time.’ I like to go into every season and every race as if it’s your last one, so I just don’t want to settle. Even though I had an awesome personal record last week, I want a new one this week. I also want our 4×400 to have a race that is indicative of all our hard work. Ananya and Sarah have the school record from last year, but I want us to go out and break it again.
A: What’s been your favorite part about being on the team so far?
JA: How our team is basically a family. We spend so much time together. We get meals together, and track meets are hours long, like we’ll be there for 15 hours, and when we get back we will still hang out with each other. I just love how we’re like brothers and sisters and how close we’ve gotten in so little time. I’m only a freshman, but I feel like I’ve known them all for so long. People always talk about how track is an individual sport, but I love how at Wesleyan they make it feel like a team sport.
The men’s and women’s teams will both be back in action this weekend at Boston University, where they will compete at the Open New England Championships.