Junior Olympic WTC Relay Team Members from left to right are: Rahmier Patterson, Devon Bembridge (who also won medals at the Junior Olympics in the 400m - 5th place and the 800m - 2nd place), Valdon R. Daniel, III and Joshua Jean-Baptiste. Not Pictured is Alternate: Naseem Gresham.
JUNIOR OLYMPIC BRONZE for the Willingboro Track Club 4X800 Meter Relay team (12 Year Old Category).
Coach Rich Johnson was challenged with having one exceptional 12 year old athlete (Devon Bembridge) and three extremely talented 10 year old athletes (who run in the 11-12 year age category because of their birth year - 2003).
The Willingboro Track Club is known for its exceptional athletes and phenomenal relay teams. Forgoing a relay team was not an option.
The difference in the 12 year old 800 meter and the 11 year old 800 meter times can vary from 15-35 seconds. Having three 10 year old athletes on a relay team running against other relay teams with mostly 11 and 12 year olds....well, you do the math.
Despite the obvious challenge of having only one 12 year old and three 10 year old athletes (who turn 11 after the Junior Olympics), Coach Rich developed and carefully selected the four member Junior Olympic 4X800 Meter relay team with high hopes and fingers crossed.
It worked! The 4X800 Meter Relay team secured bronze medals at the 2014 AAU Junior Olympics and ran their personal best time of the season 10:06.74 (23 seconds faster!).
Kudos to Coach Rich Johnson and the 4X800 Meter relay team athletes for demonstrating that with hard work and dedication...YES WE CAN.