Thursday, December 12, 2013
By Deirdre Fleming email@example.com
Reid Pryzant likes to set the bar high for his track and field goals. But then, he draws on some unusual role models as inspiration.
Reid Pryzant is a two-time state champion indoors in the hurdles and owns the fastest time in the state this spring in the 100-meter hurdles – 15.54 seconds.
John Ewing/2011 Press Herald file
"I try to recreate the morning of the (2011 indoor) state meet. I remember that morning I had honey and toast, and I have an emotional connection to honey because I'm a beekeeper. So that might have been it," said the Falmouth High senior.
For Pryzant, who is ranked first in the state in the 100-meter hurdles with a personal-best time of 15.54 seconds, this outdoor season is his redemption after breaking his ankle in the midst of a phenomenal junior year.
And the bees, Pryzant said, help him to focus. He sees, in two hives he built, how much work it takes for bees to make honey, and it makes him want to do more.
"They're the most beautiful, incredible creatures in the world," Pryzant said. "I've thought that for some time. It takes 50,000 miles of flight to make one pound of honey. I just think, 'If they can do that, I can easily sprint a few more meters.' "
Pryzant first began to commit himself more to track his junior year, initially to make himself a more well-rounded person and to be part of a hard-working community of friends.
And as he does with all things, Pryzant, who will attend Williams College in the fall, threw himself into track with unwavering gusto.
The result was two individual titles and a third-place finish at the Class B indoor state meet.
"He sets high goals, so high that a year ago, I thought they were a little crazy. But Reid taught me not to set artificial limits. He is willing to commit 100 percent. And when he plots out his progress, he can do it," said Falmouth Coach Jorma Kurry.
At the indoor state meet, Pryzant improved by over a foot to win the long jump with his mark of 20 feet, 9 inches. He also won the 55-meter hurdles in a personal-best time of 7.96 and placed third in the triple jump.
"I had never jumped beyond 20 feet in my life. My coaches both started yelling and clapping," Pryzant said.
Then Pryzant broke his ankle before the Western Maine Conference outdoor championships. But the injury that happened during the long jump on a cold day left Pryzant more committed.
Last fall, he doubled his devotion to track. He went to the gym before school to do circuit training that included bench presses, squats and crunches.
"I basically spent every morning at the gym," Pryzant said. "On the off day, I'd go to the track before school and do event technique training."
The result was a repeat victory in the hurdles at the indoor state meet. He won the event in 8.10, and also took third in the long jump.
Pryzant still gets up three times a week before school to squeeze in an extra workout. He doesn't intend to let up. Instead, he stays as focused as his bees.
"I'm kind of obsessed with the hurdles. I want to go under 15 seconds this year," he said.
Staff Writer Deirdre Fleming can be contacted at 791-6452 or at: