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McDermott: Working hard to be the number 1 hurdler

Sophomore Meghan McDermott is in no hurry to run for the gold just yet. She is being patient and has her mind on putting in the time to beat the times set by last year’s queen of the hurdles of Pahrump Valley High School, Naomi Argabright.

McDermott is currently on track to be one of the top-prep hurdlers in the state. She is a three sport athlete for the Trojans who runs track and plays volleyball and basketball. Running the hurdles though is her first love, which she started doing when she was in middle school in Pahrump.

“When I started the hurdles I was at RCMS and nobody else wanted to do the hurdles. I was not scared of them. Most of the kids were. All through middle school I was getting first place ribbons. When I got to high school I was really scared to do it. I almost didn’t do high school track. My mom convinced me to do it because I was so good at it in middle school. I like the fact that you can go in as a team and yet you are individual. In volleyball and basketball if one person screws up it can mess up your whole team. With track it is good, you can score points for your team, but if you mess up then it’s your fault,” she said.

McDermott works with a track club run by Randall Cunningham in Las Vegas, a former NFL quarterback. Her hope is that by working with Cunningham this will improve her chances of running the hurdles in college. She believes the hard work is paying off. At the moment, McDermott’s times are in the top 20 in the state in Division I-A. She is at number 11 with a 18.31 time in the 100-meter hurdles and the seconds just keep peeling away. As a sophomore she is only three seconds behind Argabright’s best time with two years to beat it.

Working with Cunningham, McDermott believes the coach has put her on an accelerated path.

“In high school, I learned about my form, my trail leg and lead leg. I learned a lot. While I am with Randall I am learning even more. I am learning about blocks, how to use my arms and it’s just a lot. Randall has one of the top hurdle coaches. I will be working with him in the summer. In middle school, I was just thinking jump over the hurdles and be fast. In high school, it is different with form, paces and all that,” she said.

At the moment, McDermott has patience on her side. She knows things like perfection take hard work and time.

“I don’t know how long it will take me to get down to what Naomi was running last year. I hope when I work with Randall this summer it will make me a lot faster. When Naomi and I were in the same heats together it pushed me to get better. Some days I want to get better already and I get frustrated with myself. I understand that I am only a sophomore. I know that if I am patient I will be able to learn better. I know I just need to do what the coaches tell me. I also know I should not over-think things,” McDermott explained.

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