The group quietly met on the infield of the track. There were no grand ceremonies or bands playing. It was just a quiet meeting of old friends getting together to celebrate old times.
The Pahrump Valley High School track team honored the girls from the 2007 state championship track team at the last home meet of the season on April 6.
Trojans athletic administrator Jason Odegard was the head track coach in 2007 and he said the reason they wanted to honor this team was because of tradition.
“People have told me that this school doesn’t have too many traditions,” he said. “Well, we are starting them now. It’s a good time to start by honoring some of these teams. We will do others too.”
Odegard and current track coach and member of the 2007 team McKenzie Dean, put together the celebration.
The team was comprised of Dominique Maloy, McKenzie Dean, Casey Burtenshaw-Ciavarella, Carrie Musick, Alexis Abou-Halaka, Ashley Rencher, Stephanie Manley, Bethani Jackson and TT Hughes.
Of the nine girls that were on the team, four of them were at the meet for the reunion. Casey Burtenshaw-Ciavarella, a sprinter, Carrie Musick, a sprinter and Alexis Abou-Halaka, a thrower. McKenzie Dean is the current head track coach and didn’t have to travel.
Burtenshaw-Ciavarella said she lives in California and is a life coach now. She loved coming to the meet.
“I drove all the way here and it feels surreal and it’s nostalgic,” she said. “I just want to go run with the team and do it. I feel I can still put on my uniform and do this running even after 10 years.”
Abou-Halaka said she works for Front Sight and didn’t have far to travel and was asked if she could still throw.
“Sure I can,” she said. “I am a lot stronger than when I was in high school.”
Musick is a teacher at Hafen Elementary School in the valley and said she was excited to see her old friends.
“I heard that track starter pistol and I wanted to go out and race,” Musick said.
Musick said it was good to see some of the coaches who are still coaching.
“Odegard and Rieger haven’t changed at all,” she said.
Dean shared some of the enthusiasm for the reunion.
“Getting back together with the team, even if just a few, was an amazing reunion,” she said. “It was great to catch up with everyone and see where life has taken them. We all wished everyone could be in attendance because it is something all nine of us and our coaching staff are very proud of. “
“More than anything, I hope this served as an eye-opener to my student-athletes right now that accolades, such as winning a state championship or competing at the next level, post-high school, are all possible through hard work, dedication and a belief in themselves,” she said.
In 2007, the late sports editor of the Pahrump Valley Times, Don McDermott, described the state championship: “What a weekend, the Pahrump Valley girls, led by the incomparable Dominique Maloy and eight teammates, who wouldn’t back off a challenge, won the Class 3A State track and field title, knocking off adversaries Spring Creek and Boulder City.”
The following athletes from the 2007 team won individual state titles: Dean (2008, 800-meter run, 1,600 and 3,200; 2007, 3,200; 2006, 3,200). Hughes (2008, 100-meter hurdles). Rencher (2008, shot put). Maloy (2007- 100, 200, 400 and long jump; 2006, 100, 200, 400 and long jump; 2005, 100, 200, 400 and long jump; 2004, 100, 200 and 400).
Contact sports editor Vern Hee at firstname.lastname@example.org