Cape Gazette
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People In Sports

First place in the slow heat of life

By Dave Frederick | May 15, 2012
Photo by: Dave Frederick Coco Buck, 29, was the No. 1 overall runner at the Mother's Day 5K.

Coco Buck - A ripped, fit 29-year-old personal trainer from Herndon, Va., and recent graduate from the University of Virginia with a degree in Women's and Gender Studies won the Mother's Day Remembrance 5K - beat everybody - in a time of 20:02 May 12 at Cape Henlopen High School. I suggested to Coco that 29 was on the older side to attain a college degree, and she told me she dropped out for several years because of illness. I asked her point blank, "What was wrong?” and she answered point blank, “I was anorexic.” Coco was very candid telling me about her struggles, and if not for the loving support of family and friends, she never would have made it. “It's so much more than just not eating enough and exercising too much,” she said. “I still have to pay attention and not work out too many hours, and I do lots of muscle strengthening and make sure I eat a nutritious diet.” Coco certainly looked great as one of the few women to win the overall title at a Seashore Striders race.

Slow heat of life - Way back in 1979, Cape track runner Helen Perez won the slow heat of the 800 meters at the Henlopen Conference meet. I've kidded Helen for the last 30 years, “First place in the slow heat of life; that is your story.” Later, in 1986, Otis White of Cape won the slow heat of the 800 meters at the state meet in a sizzling time of 1:57. The time held up the next day and Otis was a state champion the hard way. Last Saturday it was the slow heat of the 1,600 at the Henlopen Conference meet. Cape's Jon Velasquez led all four laps except for the last two meters, where he was jumped by William McCabe, an Indian River sophomore. I kidded with coach Bob Hahn of Indian River, “Now that was just cruel. Why did your kid have to go and ruin a super effort by the Cape kid?" Bob laughed, “That was his best race of the season.” McCabe ran 5:06.1 while Velasquez was clocked in 5:06.5. There was something heroic in both their efforts, that's for sure.

Carl Richardson - I love watching this senior Milford track and field athlete compete. Last weekend in the Henlopen Conference Championships, Richardson was third in the 3,200, running 10:22; he came back to get second in the 1,600 in 4:37. Then he went over and cleared 11-feet-6-inches in the pole vault for sixth place, then went back on the track for a 2:03 800 meters, good for sixth place. The entire time he never looked tired. I just want to tell him, "Congratulations and please stop it.  I'm starting to suffer from sedentary noneffective disorder.”

Snippets - Franc Cook, former Cape goalie, finished his college career as a goalie and four-year starter at Lynchburg College as the Hornets lost to Denison University 10-5 on May 12 in round 16 in the Division III NCAA lacrosse tournament.  Cook was named to the first team Old Dominion Athletic Conference for 2012.

Every Henlopen Conference track meet in May almost always coincides with prom Saturday. I spend all day at these meets snapping photos and talking to kids and rarely if ever see a school district employee. But they show up at the prom; “fronting” is what the kids call it. I like having track cred when others have none. I think I should be the new Occasional Seasonal Superintendent of Cape. I'm starting that rumor right here and yes, I would still write this column - it would be more fun than ever. Go on now, git!

William McCabe beats Jon Velasquez to the tape in the slow heat of the 1,600 in 5:06. (Photo by: Dave Frederick)
Carl Richardson of Milford pole vaults 11-feet-6-inches just after running a 4:37 mile. He also ran the two-mile distance in 10:22 and the half mile in 2:03. (Photo by: Dave Frederick)
Franc Cook makes one last save as Lynchburg's starting goalie. (Photo by: Dan Cook )
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