While many of Danielle Delgado’s peers wanted to become sprinters, she loved jumping over hurdles

first_imgEditor’s note: Prepare yourselves for the spring seasons of Syracuse Athletics with our 2018 season preview series, which will spotlight senior runner Danielle Delgado, next-in-line hurdler David Gilstrap, former freshman tennis standout Miranda Ramirez and Syracuse softball’s sophomore ace, Alexa Romero.Danielle Delgado was never interested in taking the easy route. As an eighth grader in 2010, new to competitive club track and field, Delgado thought the hurdles looked fun and decided to give it a try.By the time she began high school, Delgado had become one of the top hurdlers her age in the country.“Ninety-nine out of 100 kids come in saying they’re sprinters,” Prime Time Track Club head coach Johnny Allen said. “Danielle was the type of young lady who came in, and whatever I asked her to do, she had no problem doing it.”Delgado has translated that mindset to Syracuse University, where she is one of the school’s top hurdlers. Delgado is the only 400-meter hurdler at SU in the last eight years. Additionally, Delgado has competed in eight different events including sprints, hurdles, relays and throwing.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textFor Delgado, track has been the focus since she joined Prime Time Track Club along with some of her neighborhood friends from Somerset, New Jersey. She immediately gravitated toward hurdles. She loved the idea of jumping over them during a race.“She liked hurdles more than running,” her mother Yvette said. “We were all surprised when she said ‘I like this’ and we were all like ‘OK’ thinking it would just last a minute.”Track proved to be Delgado’s calling. By June 2010, just after joining Allen’s track club, Delgado won the 100-meter hurdles in the New Jersey state championship and finished fifth in the 100-meter dash. Weeks later, she finished second in the 100-meter hurdles and seventh in the 100-meter dash at regionals, competing against strong track states such as New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.Within two months of joining the team, Delgado was on a plane to Sacramento, California, to compete at the USA Track & Field Junior Outdoor Championships.“That was the most nervous I’ve ever felt in all of my track career,” Delgado said. “I wasn’t eating. I didn’t know what to expect.”She always gets nervous before races, Yvette said, but on a hot, sunny day in central California, Delgado did something she had never done in a race before. She fell.Delgado hung with the pack, but she clipped the last hurdle and tumbled forward. Delgado rose to her feet and completed the race last in her heat, finishing 30th of 33 competitors. After two months of near-perfection, Delgado stumbled on the biggest stage a 13-year-old could compete on. Somber and embarrassed, Delgado angrily trudged back up towards the stands of Hughes Stadium at Sacramento City College.As she made her way up, Allen met his young runner halfway.“This will not be your last nationals,” Allen said to Delgado.Allen let her pass up to the stands where she sat alone, thinking about the race.“I knew she was devastated,” Allen said.She didn’t want to talk about it. Not that day. But the next morning, Delgado and Allen were eating breakfast in their hotel in Sacramento, and Allen repeated his message.“This will not be your last nationals,” he said.After starting high school, Delgado added the 400-meter hurdles to her repertoire and thrived at it. As a high school freshman, Delgado asserted herself early on as a key contributor.At Prime Time Track Club, she competed against other track clubs in the USA Track and Field circuit. But in high school, everything was public and there were more athletes and therefore more competition.Still, at 14 years old, Delgado finished sixth in the 100-meter hurdles in the New Jersey state championship, against 17- and 18-year-olds.“It was kind of eye-opening,” said Dashaun Gourdine, head coach of Franklin High School, where Delgado attended school and ran competitively. “She was going to be something special.”Despite her top-level finish at the state meet, against many runners two or three years older than her, Delgado wanted more. On the bus ride back to Somerset, Gourdine remembered talking to his freshman hurdler. She repeated one message the whole ride.“I know I can do better,” Delgado said.And just one month after her high school state meet, Delgado found herself in familiar territory for Allen’s track club. She captured first place in the 400-meter and 100-meter hurdles in the state meet, and first and second respectively at the regional meet to qualify for nationals in Wichita, Kansas.There, Delgado finished 15th in the nation in the 400-meter hurdles, and 13th in the 100-meter hurdles.Delgado returned to nationals a third straight year in 2012, after completing her first year of high school. There, in Baltimore, she finished 10th in the 100-meter hurdles despite tweaking her hamstring. Avoiding any further issues, Delgado did not run the 400-meter hurdles.In two years, Delgado moved up 20 spots. She solidified herself on the USA Track and Field track circuit, not just as a short-distance hurdler, but also as a 400-meter-hurdler.“If you mention the 400 to 99.9 percent of athletes, they’ll look at you like ‘Oh no. I don’t do that,’” Allen said. “It’s a test of your will. The 400 is a gruesome race. Now you’re talking about doing hurdles. Now you have to be jumping over obstacles. It’s the premier race of track and field.”“Danielle is that quiet storm,” Allen added. “She had an attitude of ‘ I want to succeed. I want to accomplish.”At Franklin, Delgado thought she would focus more on short-distance hurdles, as it was what she enjoyed much more. Gourdine was determined to change that.He started training Delgado in the 400-meter hurdles, despite some pushback on her part. Gourdine convinced her to hop in a race just to try it and see how went. She competed and finished in a very solid time, Gourdine said, but Delgado didn’t want any part of it.“She was like ‘I’m never doing that again,’” Gourdine remembered Delgado saying. “’That hurts. Oh my gosh. You’re crazy coach.’”But he convinced her to stick with it, adding that the 400-meter hurdles would boost her short-distance hurdling. Gourdine even convinced her to quit cheerleading, which she had done since the second grade, in order to run cross country in the fall and get in better shape before track season.“I didn’t think I could run anything longer than a 400,” Delgado said.She did not like cross country, Yvette, said. But it would improve her fitness and help her reach the next level. She swapped pom-poms for five-kilometer races and a weight room, and she began to drastically improve. Her times dropped drastically and she began receiving interest from college coaches.By senior year, Delgado was competing to be the top hurdler in New Jersey, something she had been constantly chasing since she began running in middle school. And that year, that dream looked attainable.But when the Meet of Champions – the New Jersey state championship – came around in May that year, Delgado came up just short.“I had my heart set on that,” Delgado said. “It took four years.”Later that month, Delgado ran the 100-meter hurdles in the Group 4 sectional meet. After coming up short in the state meet, Delgado felt she had everything to prove, but when the gun went off, Delgado found herself immediately at the back of the pack, and still behind at the 50-meter mark.But after clearing the middle hurdle, Delgado surged. She didn’t notice herself passing anyone. She looked straight ahead, not expecting to see her name in first place. When she finished, tired and out of breath, she didn’t think that she won, but everyone else knew she did.She finished the race in a personal-record time of 13.85 seconds. No one else broke 14.“When she crossed the line I was like ‘Woah!,’” Gourdine said. “‘Did she just run what I think she ran?’”Delgado ran to her head coach and gave him a massive hug, crying against his body.“I’ll never forget that race,” Gourdine said. “It was just me and her, after going through four years.”When Delgado arrived at Syracuse three years ago, her focus shifted back to short-distance hurdles. She stopped running the 400-meter hurdles and when that stopped, Delgado didn’t race as well as she once did. It wasn’t until her junior year that she and Syracuse assistant coach Dave Hegland discussed bringing it back into her routine.“She struggled a bit her first year or two in the 100 hurdles,” Hegland said. “So we thought that was an area she could score points in.”And she did just that in the 2017 Outdoor ACC Championships. While Delgado did not score in the 60-meter hurdles at the indoor ACC Championships and in the 100-meter hurdles at the outdoor championships, she placed fourth in the 400-meter hurdles.“I ran, really, in a way that I’ve never ran before,” Delgado said. “Once I got the breath to actually look at the clock, I was in complete shock.”Now, as a senior, Delgado is primed to be one of SU’s key contributors as one of its most diverse talents.In two meets through this indoor season, Delgado finished fourth in the 60-meter hurdles at the Albany Great Dane Invite and first in the same event at the Upstate Challenge in Cornell.Throughout the outdoor season, Delgado will be called upon for hurdles and relays of varying distances. At practices, while many of her teammates are running 200-meter repeats, she will be doing the same, but with hurdles in between.Allen remembers that morning in Sacramento, explaining to his young runner that one bad race was not the end of the world. After all, she’d only been running at a highly competitive level for two months.“To see her come back from that moment in Sacramento,” Allen said, “… she has been to the nationals ever since that day. There has not been a year that she did not qualify for nationals. That’s special.” Comments Published on January 21, 2018 at 10:03 pm Contact Matt: mdliberm@syr.edu Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Short-handed Angels go quietly in loss to Diamondbacks

first_imgIt wasn’t enough to support their pitcher, another injury replacement.Odrisamer Despaigne allowed three runs in four innings in his second start since the Angels acquired him to help plug one of their holes in their injury-marred rotation.Despaigne gave up a two-run homer in the first inning to Paul Goldschmidt. On the eighth pitch of the at-bat, Despaigne left a cutter up in the zone and Goldschmidt blasted it for a no-doubt homer to left field.Despaigne did not allow another hit until the fourth, when Goldschmidt led off with a single and went to second on Daniel Descalso’s dribbler up the third-base line. Goldschmidt went to third on a fly ball and scored on Nick Ahmed’s single, just over the leaping Simmons.Related Articles Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros PreviousPHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Paul Goldschmidt #44 of the Arizona Diamondbacks hits a single against the Los Angeles Angels during the fourth inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)The Diamondbacks’ Paul Goldschmidt hits a two-run home run during the first inning of Wednesday’s game against the Angels in Phoenix. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Odrisamer Despaigne gets a new baseball after giving up a two-run home run to Arizona Diamondbacks’ Paul Goldschmidt as Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons, right, pauses in the infield during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsArizona Diamondbacks’ Paul Goldschmidt (44) celebrates his two-run home run against the Los Angeles Angels with David Peralta, left, and manager Torey Lovullo, right, during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)Arizona Diamondbacks starter Clay Buchholz throws a pitch to a Los Angeles Angels batter during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Starting pitcher Odrisamer Despaigne #40 of the Los Angeles Angels pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)Arizona Diamondbacks’ Nick Ahmed connects for an RBI single against the Los Angeles Angels during the fourth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)Los Angeles Angels starter Odrisamer Despaigne throws a pitch to an Arizona Diamondbacks batter during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)Arizona Diamondbacks third baseman Eduardo Escobar reaches out to field a grounder hit by Los Angeles Angels’ Odrisamer Despaigne before throwing out Despaigne at first base during the third inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)Los Angeles Angels’ David Fletcher ends up on the ground after diving out of the way from an inside pitch thrown by Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Clay Buchholz during the fourth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Outfielder David Peralta #6 of the Arizona Diamondbacks makes a leaping catch against the Los Angeles Angels during the first inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Infielder Taylor Ward #3 of the Los Angeles Angels fields an infield single during the fouth inning of the MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels warms up on deck during the fifth inning of the MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Shohei Ohtani #17 of the Los Angeles Angels bats against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the sixth inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)Arizona Diamondbacks third baseman Eduardo Escobar (14) forces out Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani (17), of Japan, at second base during the sixth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Jabari Blash #54 of the Los Angeles Angels bats against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the third inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)PHOENIX, AZ – AUGUST 22: Paul Goldschmidt #44 of the Arizona Diamondbacks hits a single against the Los Angeles Angels during the fourth inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on August 22, 2018 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)The Diamondbacks’ Paul Goldschmidt hits a two-run home run during the first inning of Wednesday’s game against the Angels in Phoenix. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)NextShow Caption1 of 16The Diamondbacks’ Paul Goldschmidt hits a two-run home run during the first inning of Wednesday’s game against the Angels in Phoenix. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)ExpandPHOENIX — About eight miles away from where the Angels hold spring training, they used another spring training lineup.Unfortunately for them, the Arizona Diamondbacks insisted on playing a normal, regular-season game.As a result, the short-handed Angels lost 5-1 to the Diamondbacks on Wednesday night.For the second straight night, the Angels started a lineup that included just three players who were in the everyday lineup when the season began: Albert Pujols, Andrelton Simmons and Kole Calhoun. Mike Trout, Justin Upton and Zack Cozart are all on the disabled list, with Cozart out for the season. Martín Maldonado and Ian Kinsler have been traded. Even Luis Valbuena, who started on opening day because Kinsler was hurt, has been released. Shohei Ohtani was unable to start because they were playing in a National League park, with no DH.Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.What’s more, one of the more consistenly productive replacements only made it through half the game before leaving. David Fletcher was removed from the game in the fourth inning after fouling a ball off his left knee. He was diagnosed with a contusion. He said he expects to be able to play by the time the Angels return to action on Friday.That left the Angels to play another game with a patchwork lineup, one that managed only five hits.“We have some guys who are figuring it out as they play every day,” Manager Mike Scioscia said. “These guys need to play to figure stuff out. Tonight we just didn’t pressure those guys enough.”Facing veteran Clay Buchholz, the Angels got a runner into scoring position just twice and didn’t score a run until Jefry Marte’s RBI groundout after they trailed 5-0 in the eighth. Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter center_img Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros “He showed flashes of some really good stuff, but overall wasn’t repeating pitches like he would need to get deep in the game,” Scioscia said.Despaigne needed 87 pitches to get through four innings, so he then gave way to the bullpen, which included more auditions for 2019. Both of the relievers acquired in the Kinsler trade pitched on Wednesday.Ty Buttrey pitched a perfect inning, with two strikeouts. Buttrey has not allowed a run in three innings so far with the Angels.Lefty Williams Jerez had not allowed a run in his first seven innings with the Angels, but he had his first rough outing on Wednesday. After getting two quick outs, he gave up a single to Eduardo Escobar and a two-run homer to David Peralta. After a walk and a single, he was pulled.“Both those kids, Jerez and Buttrey, they have some live arms,” Scioscia said. “As they get some experience, I think those are two really good potential back-end bullpen guys.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

Ramada Resort Reia Taipa Beach celebrates official opening

first_imgRamada Resort Reia Taipa Beach celebrates official openingThe official opening of Wyndham Hotel Group’s latest Ramada-branded property in New Zealand was celebrated at a special launch event on Friday. The function was attended by local dignitaries including Tania McInnes Deputy Mayor, Far North District Council along with key tourism and hospitality industry representatives.Formerly the Reia Taipa Beach Resort, the property underwent an extensive refurbishment by its owners, Taipa Management Limited before being rebranded to Ramada Resort Reia Taipa Beach in March this year.  The resort now boasts quality fixtures and fittings and contemporary décor. Guests can choose to stay in deluxe and superior studios, suites and apartments. Located between Cape Reinga and the Bay of Islands on the picturesque waterfront of Doubtless Bay, the resort offers a restaurant, bar, café, swimming pool, tennis court, barbecues and conference and event facilities accommodating up to 150 guests.Levin Da Costa, Director of Taipa Management Limited officially opened the resort in front of some 80 guests, saying the introduction of Ramada to the Far North was a key milestone for the region.“Ramada Resort Reia Taipa Beach is the gateway to exploring the Far North and offers unparalleled holiday and conferencing options,” said Mr Da Costa. “The introduction of the globally recognised brand of Ramada® will add value to the area as a key leisure and business destination.”Vice President Acquisitions and Development Wyndham Hotel Group South East Asia and Pacific Rim, David Wray said he was delighted to introduce the Ramada brand to one of New Zealand’s much loved tourism destinations.“The rapid expansion of Wyndham Hotel Group in the South East Asia and Pacific Rim as we have seen with Ramada in New Zealand is a testament to the emphasis we place on consistently high quality accommodation coupled with exceptional customer service,” Mr Wray said.Ramada® is a global brand of more than 840 midscale and upscale hotels worldwide that cater to families and business travellers and is part of the Wyndham Hotel Group, the world’s largest hotel company based on the number of hotels. Wyndham Hotel Groupbecome a Personal Travel Manager hereSource = Wyndham Hotel Grouplast_img read more