Name: Troy Hendricks
School: Sacopee Valley High School
What was your most memorable race/meet?
My most memorable race was my second race of my cross country season at Lake Region during my senior year. Previously, the week before, I ran in their Invitational and set their course record. The week after I returned there and ran in my first regular season race. Now this race was one of the most adrenaline filled races I've had. So I was just coming up to the 2 mile mark (5k race) and I noticed that my left shoe came untied. At first I thought to myself, "Wow, Troy your a senior in high school and your making a rookie mistake by not tying your shoes tight enough..." then I thought in my head, "should I stop and tie my shoe or should I pull a Luke Laverdiere and kick it off?" (Props to Luke for running WMC Championship without a shoe). I figured it was best to stop and tie it due to the fact that their was some rough terrain a head. So currently I'm leading the race by about 15 yards. As it comes untied I'm approaching the coaches at the 2 mile mark and I look at my coach and urgently ask him if I should tie it. He responds, "Whatever you do you better do it fast!". It was at that moment that I jump down on one knee and tie my shoe faster than I've ever tied it before. As I'm doing this I'm glancing over at the second place runner crashing towards me. My adrenaline was bursting through my body. Once I got my shoe tied I sprinted up like a 100m sprinter shooting out of the blocks. I was fortunate enough to end up winning the race and breaking my record from the previous race, (even after tying my shoe...). I learned two things that day: 1. Always double knot your shoes before the race! 2. If I could beat my time from before even with stopping to tie my shoe then I had more potential in me than I thought, it was a great confidence booster for the season ahead.
Who would you consider your biggest competition over your four years?
My biggest competition would have to be a list of 3 guys:
Dalan Hubbard from Traip Academy
Henry Spritz from Waynflete
Branden Penfold from Deer Isle Stonington
It was a blast competing with them throughout my years in high school.
What was your greatest accomplishment?
I believe that my greatest accomplishment was the progress and growth I had as a cross country runner through my two years of running, junior and senior year. I went from an 18:00 minute 5k runner, finishing 19th at Class C states, to becoming a 16:20 minute 5k runner my senior year. I decided that I really wanted to become a better runner so I did just that by putting in the work during the off season and pushing myself as much as I could.
If you could do it all over again what would you change about your xc/track&field career in high school?
If I could do it all over again I probably would of put more work in during the off season of my senior year. It was a busy year, as most seniors know. I think I could of done more to get better during my last track season. But I can only look forward from here and improve off of what I've learned this past year. I'm lucky enough to continue my running career at Saint Joesphs College of Maine.
What will you miss the most?
After looking back on my high school running career I believe that I'm gunna miss the people the most. Whether it's my own team mates, coaches, and even my rivals. There's a certain atmosphere that track and cross country has that I truly believe it's like no other sport. Everyone's there to compete and try to beat the person a head of them, but at the end of the day we're all just trying to better ourselves and it's through the competitive nature of each individual that helps one another succeed in that betterment.
What advice you would give to younger athletes?
If you want to be successful in what you do as an athlete you have to "want it". Find your passion and set goals for yourself. You have to truly want to get better, you have to find that drive, that motivation, that reason to go on that long run or do that extra rep. You have to have the "I can achieve anything and nothing's gunna stop me from doing so" kind of mentality. There will be obstacles in your way and things that will bring you down but if you truly "want it" then you will do everything in your power to achieve it.
What influence has your coach had with respect to your performance and overall life goals?
My Coach, Ben Murphy, was my coach for XC, basketball, Track and Field, and he also was my 11th grade English teacher. Yes, He's a man of many trades. I truly believe that I wouldn't of been as successful as I was if it wasn't for this man. He's always been a role model to me and my team mates. He believed in me even when I didn't have the confidence to believe in myself. He's pushed me to my best and has taught me that, yeah it's okay to be good... but why be "good" when you can be great! Murphy has shaped me into a great athlete and an even greater person. I will forever be grateful for the sacrifices he's made for the benefit of my teams and the benefit of me as an individual.
What are your college plans?
I plan to continue my running career at Saint Joesphs College of Maine. There I will be studying Mathematics- Secondary Education.
Who would you like to say thank you to?
Man, this list could go on forever. First I would like to thank my coaches over the years: Ben Murphy, Heath Cormier, Stuart Mayer, and Tom Dann. I would like to thank my family and community for all the support they've given me over the past four years. I owe a great thanks to my teammates over the years as well. Specifically Blake Trueworthy, for it was your passion and dedication that I saw my freshman year that motivated me to become the runner I am today. Lastly, I would like to thank my competitors/rivals and friends I've made over the years of track and Cross Country:
Mark D'Alesandro from Saint Doms
Connor Rice from Old Orchard Beach
Dalan Hubbard from Traip
Mitch Libby from Wells
Brandon Pendfolf from Deer Isle Stonington
Henry Spritz from Waynflete.
It was these competitors that pushed me during my high school career and I'm truly thankful for that.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
I'll leave you all with one last quote that got me through me high school running career. "To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift" - Pre (of course it's gotta be a Prefontaine Quote).