Odicho strides to finish line


Hannah Lizano, Sports Editor

The adrenaline runs through her veins. The competitive tension entices her. She hears the gunshot ringing in her ears.

Ninawa Odicho, sophomore, prepares for her race during Sectionals at Niles West.

Odicho is currently a sprinter and mid-distance runner on the Niles North Varsity Track team. She also participates in the Cross-Country team during the fall season.

She started as a freshman and was immediately put on varsity. 

Given that the average mid-distance runner is tall with a slim build, Ninawa plans on defying those expectations with her having a short and athletic build.

“This year I think my events are going to be the 400 and 800, but at the same time I’m really short and most runners in those events aren’t short. It’s hard to look at people who run those events and don’t look like me but at the same time I know I can overcome that.”

During her season she ran in the 4×100, 4×200, 4×400, 400, and 800. She was filled with determination when she realized her times were close to the state qualifying times.

Even though she wasn’t able to make it to state last season she’s motivated to accomplish that this coming season. 

“Particularly this season I’m very motivated to work hard because I have a lot of goals, especially making it to state. And last year after not making it to state I’m really hungry to go this year.”

With many seasons to come for this track star, she is paving a pathway for underclassmen to look up to her as a role model. When asked what advice she could give an aspiring athlete Odicho said, “To work hard, obviously, it’s the most simple thing but sometimes it’s the simple things that help to get where you want. If you work hard then you’ll get what you want and if you don’t then you’re not working hard enough.”

For the upcoming track season, Odicho has been focused on her goal of going to state she incorporated heavy lifts and long runs to increase her endurance and strength.

Even though others might see Odicho as a role model she looks up to athletes such as Serena Williams and Allyson Felix. 

“Serena Williams has been through so much but she continued being a great athlete and another athlete that is within Track is Allyson Felix because she just got pregnant and still trying to compete in the 2020 Olympics and they both show how you can overcome obstacles and continue to be great.”

Track and Field are one of her top priorities but outside of track Odicho takes part in many after-school activities.

“I’m in Dance Marathon currently a morale captain, on my way to becoming an Exec hopefully. I’m part of recycling club, I occasionally go to tutoring club if I’m not in the weight room, yoga club because of cross country, and frosh-soph class board.”

If you want to see Odicho compete come to her first meet at Maine South Feb. 5, 2019.