The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

January 31, 2013

Edgewood athletes training year around

After school programs give students extra opportunities to stay in condition

Star Beacon

ASHTABULA TOWNSHIP — This year at Edgewood, there is no off season for athletes. Traditionally, students participated in winter sports such as basketball, wrestling, cheerleading or swimming. This year however, two new after school sports programs are becoming prominent, the indoor track team and the physical conditioning program Bigger-Faster-Stronger (BFS).

Bigger-Faster-Stronger, coached by Chris Monda, one of Edgewood’s football coaches, started as an extra conditioning opportunity for football players last spring continuing into fall. In late October, the program was opened up to all students who wished to participate in the program after school in preparation for future sports or just to get into better shape.

BFS athletes participate in hard practices every day after school, whether they practice in Edgewood’s weight lifting room, Rubber Band Room, or just run the halls. These cross-training workouts provide students with a challenging and rewarding workout that provides them a physical edge over the competition.

Brandon Long, a freshman football player, said, “Participating in BFS has helped my physical performance exponentially. Coach Monda has been extremely beneficial to the Buckeye athletic program this year.”

Also running during their off-season is the Edgewood Warrior Indoor Track Team. This dedicated group of track athletes is putting in the extra effort before the season starts this year in hopes of making it to State Championship during the spring season. Athletes meet after school twice a week to work out at Edgewood, and have made arrangements to practice at the SPIRE institute’s indoor track once a week.

The Indoor Track coach, Beth Simpson, is very excited about this opportunity. “At the SPIRE, our athletes will have the opportunity to really work on their form. Our runners will get to run on a synthetic track instead of the school hallways or cinder track, our jumpers will get to jump and our throwers will get to throw,” she said.

Athletes will also get the chance to see the competition they will be facing during the regular season at the two indoor track meets that will be held at the SPIRE this year. The athletes train hard even on their own at home, stretching or jogging on their own time to push that extra mile of effort that makes Edgewood’s track team known for their extreme effort and values: family, love and the attitude of champions.

Simpson praised this year’s athletes. She said, “ I'm really proud to be leading this particular group of students. We've doubled the size of our indoor team from last year and they are such hard-working, dedicated, funny, intelligent and talented individuals! I seriously leave practices feeling very lucky to be coaching these athletes!”

The second official Edgewood Science Fair will be Feb. 23 in the school library. There are some key differences from last year’s fair according to the coordinator, Beth Simpson.

“We started advertising earlier this year,” Simpson said.

Another difference is that because it is happening in February, the winner can advance to the science fair at the district level, which is being held at Youngstown State University. There is also a $200 prize for the first place winner. The exact number of participants is unknown, but Simpson says that many students have expressed an interest in it. There is still time for students to sign up and get involved.

One participant, senior Jacob Crislip, has taken a particular interest in the fair. He has been working on his project since last summer, and his initial research started at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology for the college’s Operation Catapult.

“My project involves the kind of work that a chemical engineer does and chemical engineering is the sort of field I hope to get involved in,” Crislip said.

After months of adjusting his techniques, Crislip is ready to begin his final tests.

Feb. 23 will be a busy day at Edgewood since the freshman and sophomore Student Council members will be hosting the annual Winter Ball from 7 to 10 p.m. in the school. The theme this year is “Fairy Tales” and the music will be provided by disc jockey Anthony Evans. Winter Ball is for all Edgewood students and their guests.