Sophomore Maya Levine made Hewitt Hawks history this past cross country season by bringing home 1st and 2nd place awards in the Athletic Association of Independent Schools (AAIS) tournament league. Since joining the varsity team in fifth grade, Levine has always run with such vigor and grace and a positive attitude, While her passion for running is extensive, it was only recently that she joined the varsity team — making her success all the more impressive.
Levine’s interest in running during a 5 kilometer race with her family. Since joining the school team in 5th grade, she has run in cross country, indoor track and outdoor track.
During the annual preseason, from August to November, the cross country team met every day to condition, weight train, and run in Central Park or Van Cortlandt Park. As the days turned from warm summer afternoons to cold autumn evenings, the team continued to train for the four and five kilometer races.
This prepared the team for the New York State Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS) league final competitions this fall. Despite being one the smaller sports at Hewitt, the cross country team pulled a lot of great finishes. Levine stayed calm despite the nerves and stress associated with the track races. In an interview with The Hewitt Times, she said that pre-race butterflies or “hard and tough” races are inevitable, but she focuses on “finishing hard and staying strong.”
On October 25th, Levine won the 4000 meter race, and, on November 7th, she took 2nd place in the 5000 meter race in the NYSAIS Championships. Both of those accomplishments are extremely important not only to the school’s history but also her personal record.
Levine said her record-breaking win would not have been possible without the “great support from my team this season and such an amazing coach [Coach Walter]. He has helped me get where I am today along with the team who has improved so much along the way.”
A testament to the coaching: most players achieved their personal records in almost every race.
The track star has a bright future. With the help of the coaches and Director of Athletics Coach Amy Mulligan, Levine is looking into potential universities and their running programs. Next season Levine will regroup with her team and hopefully take home another 1st place medal: “Look out for Hewitt Indoor Track, it’ll be special!”
Most recently, Levine competed in the New Balance National Indoor Track Championships. It’s a competition regarding a High School track and field meet in the United States, involving hundreds of teenagers from all over the country Since 1990, the National Scholastic Athletic Foundation has organized a national invitational championship track meet in the United States and has been the host of many national records. The meet has many races varying from 60 meters to 2 miles, and from 4×200 relay to 60 meters hurdles. This year, Levine represented Hewitt in the One Mile Rising Stars section. Levine completed the race in 11th place in 5 minutes and 13 seconds, only .2 seconds behind tenth. Throughout Hewitt history, this race has been extremely uncommon, if appearing at all. Maya Levine and Paris Robinson were two athletes that were invited to participate in the meet, which is an achievement itself.