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Season on the line for Half-Steppers

on August 5, 2011

This is it. This is where the Half-Steppers lay everything on the line—if not they’ll be steppin’ in the stands Saturday as spectators, while others compete for medals during the Junior Olympic finals.

Coach Eric Avery said over the phone this morning that Thursday was their second straight day off, but that they used the free time to practice relay hand-offs at a local track.

The team was focused and looked good for the mid-day practice, despite sweltering conditions, Avery said.

“Let’s go out the way we came in,” Avery told the team during their season finale practice. “We came in working real hard, let’s go out working real hard.”

All four relay teams and Tyrone Morgan, 16, the team’s senior member, will take the track Friday, all looking to secure medals for Richmond.

Avery said the bus driver took them after practice to see some unique New Orleans graffiti expression. What they saw, Avery said, were homes and buildings damaged beyond repair by Hurricane Katrina, most of which now are marked by graffiti words, often odes to the tragedy. Many of the buildings were also the scenes of casualties of the horrific flooding in 2005, Avery said.

The evening came to a close with a big dinner of pasta salad, chicken and corn on the cob at the hotel.

After dinner, the team and coaches huddled together for their annual talent show they hold near the end of each season.

Last night, Moses “Bullet” Baker took the title with a little rap.

If the team advances today they will run in the finals on Saturday at 11:15 a.m. Pacific Standard Time.

If they don’t advance, their season is over.

“Just give a good effort,” Avery told his team during Thursday’s practice. “It doesn’t matter if you place first, second, third or last—if you tried that’s all that matters.”


| Follow the team from start to finish.

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