Athlete of the Week: Derek Swope

Tierra Mahute, Staff Writer

Going into the BA Invitational junior Derek Swope was seeded No. 1 in the 100 hurdles.

Derek finished first in hurdles and helped propel the Devils to a second-place finish.

“Derek has worked very hard this year and it is paying off now. With Matt McMillan being injured Derek has stepped up his performance to help the team,” said Coach Lovrich. “The competition at the BA Invitational is very good. For him to perform at that high of a level was a great accomplishment for him. We need him to keep it up for the rest of the season.”

For his efforts Swope is the BluePrint’s athlete of the week.

Following the invitational, Swope won the 110 and 300 hurdles against Northern Bedford and Fannet Metal as the Devils captured the ICC title.

Blueprint: How did you get involved with track?

Derek: My freshman year I thought I could eventually contribute to the team in a big way. I joined the team and for two years learned from the guys who were older and experienced.

Blueprint: What events do you participate in? Which is your favorite?

Derek: I do long jump, triple jump, 110m hurdles and 300m hurdles. My favorite event would be a tie between 100m Hurdles and long jump.

Blueprint: How did you do at the BA Invitational?

Derek: I don’t like to directly say “I did great!” because it makes me feel narcissistic. So I did everything I could to give my team the best chance to win, and I feel I did that.

Blueprint: Is your track season what you expected?

Derek: I’m pleased with my continued improvement and our team ability and to step up. I didn’t expect, however, to lose to Hollidaysburg. I personally don’t count that as a loss because they randomly canceled 100m hurdles, which we would’ve swept.

Blueprint: What advice would you give to others?

Derek: I would tell all the athletes to be patient and take as much information in as you can from the older guys.