Varsity indoor track stars named Goshen Gladiator Student-Athletes of the Week

Grace Atlas, Kayla Pucci, Nicolas Paneto and Alejandro Alonzo smiling.
Grace Atlas, Kayla Pucci, Nicolas Paneto and Alejandro Alonzo.

This week’s Goshen Gladiator Student-Athletes of the Week are Varsity Indoor Track Stars Nicolas Paneto, Alejandro Alonzo, Grace Atlas, and Kayla Pucci.

Nicolas Paneto is a sophomore middle-distance runner for the Gladiator running program. Paneto has been part of the program since 8th grade, when he decided to join indoor track to stay in shape between cross country and outdoor.

“Over the past 3 years, his performance has improved dramatically due to his work ethic and positive attitude.” Said Head Coach Kyle Lewis.

In cross country this past fall, Paneto had a breakthrough season, running 17:18 on our home course; the 3rd fastest time from a Goshen athlete in the history of the current course. Paneto ran 16:40 at the Section IX Class B championship placing 5th overall, helping his team to its first Section title since 2008.

This season, Paneto has proven himself as one of the fastest sophomore runners in Section IX. He has run 10:07 in the 3200m, 4:43 in the 1600m, and 2:06 in the 800m. Nicolas will surely continue to improve his times as the championship season begins later this week.

Senior Alejandro Alonzo has been part of the indoor track program since his freshman year. Over the past four years, Goshen indoor track has evolved into a competitive, successful program, and Alonzo has been an integral part of this transformation.

Since the beginning of this season, Alonzo has been focused on refining his hurdling technique and the hard work has paid off! At the Molloy Stanner Games, Alonzo posted his best effort of the season, completing the 55 meter hurdles in 8.61 seconds. He has also been part of both the 4x200m and 4x400m relay teams. This past weekend, Alonzo stepped up to a new challenge and volunteered to run the 600m. Never having run anything further than 400m competitively, Alonzo completed the long sprint in an impressive 1:34.5, a time that’s sure to drop with more experience and training.

Alonzo was also a member of the boys Varsity Soccer team that won the Section IX Championship this past fall.

Junior Grace Atlas is currently in her third year as a member of the Indoor Track team. This season, Grace has ran two indoor personal records with a 3:20.10 in the 1000m and a 5:12 in the 1500m. She is also member of the 4×800 relay team. Last year, Grace was a national qualifier as part of the distance medley relay team and was a member of the Division III champion outdoor track and field team. During that outdoor season, Grace was a member of the 4×800 relay team that also qualified for nationals.

This past fall, Grace was a member of the Lady Gladiator Section IX Championship soccer team and last years outdoor Division III Champion Track team. She is also a member of the Outdoor Track and field team and Interact Club.

Kayla Pucci also ran two indoor personal records this season. Kayla is our newest breakout racewalker with a time of 8:32 and also ran a 1600m in 5:35.20. She also competes on the 4×800 relay team. Kayla’s goal is to break the 8 minute barrier in the race walking event.

Kayla was also a part of this year’s Section IX championship girls soccer team and was a member of the 2016 Division III Girls track and field championship team.

According to Coach Jacobsen, “both athletes are VERY hardworking and dedicated to the sport. They are part of a great team and are continuing to excel in their individual and relay events.”