Enterprise elementary schoolers pick up speed in track program

Local Sports

ENTERPRISE, Ala. (WDHN) — Here in the South, a lot of people might think about football and basketball when it comes to sports, but there’s another sport that Enterprise City Schools are trying to introduce to kids.

The first day of the Enterprise City Schools Elementary Track Meet took place Thursday.

Hillcrest Elementary, Rucker Boulevard Elementary and Enterprise Early Education Center faced off at Enterprise High School.

The meet aims to give kids exposure to track and field events and show them what it would be like to compete in a high school track meet.

Their coaches think it’s important for them to get exposed to the sport at a young age.

“Getting kids active nowadays with technology being so prevalent in their lives.” said Dayla Gulledge, a P.E. teacher at Enterprise Early Education Center, “It allows them to see that now there’s something that they’re good at, and they can enjoy and be successful at in the future.”

Coaches keep track of the kids stats to see if they’re improving.

One coach said his favorite part of it all is seeing the kids excited.

“Two weeks ago, we were running the hallways timing the kids and how many times do you see an elementary kid be able to run in the hallway without getting yelled at, which they weren’t,” said Brad Fortney, the head track coach for Enterprise City Schools. “You know they were getting timed, and they’re running back excited saying ‘oh I just ran this!’ and just their excitement and joy.”

That excitement was clear all over the track.

“I did long jump, shotput actually, 400 meter, and I did the 4 by 400. I got first place in my 400 and 4 by 400,” said Bryce Deetion, a Hillcrest Elementary School student.

Coaches said they hope that their enthusiasm now might encourage kids to run track when they get older.

Fortney also says that aspects of track like running and jumping are fundamentals of any sport, so participating in elementary track can prepare them for anything they want to play.

Pinedale Elementary, Holly Hill Elementary, and Harrand Creek Elementary will compete on Tuesday.

Kids from all six schools who qualify will compete in the finals on March 16.

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