Monday, December 4, 2023

Westrom comfortable on many fields

Tyler Westrom is an all-around athlete.

The Argyle freshman plays small forward on the basketball team and outfielder on the baseball team, but it was the district track and field meet that Westrom, 15, made his biggest mark of the school year.

“By that point in the year, it did not surprise me at all,” Argyle track coach Scott Styron said. “I was quite impressed of course, but very used to it. I don’t think of him as freshman anymore, but it is nice knowing I will have him for three more years.”

Westrom won district championships in both the 1,600 and 3,200 meter events, and Styron said that looking back upon his inaugural varsity season, one thing stands out.

“It’s exceeded my wildest expectations,” Styron said. “Obviously, he is talented and an extremely hard worker. But what has blown me away the most is his leadership ability at such a young age. It is not uncommon at all for him to gather all the distance runners up, and they follow his lead.”

Regardless of what Westrom accomplishes beyond district, Styron said that 2021 has been a successful season for the Argyle freshman.

“He has been our Athlete of the Week twice already, but I do expect even more at the regional meet,” Styron said in an April 19 interview. “That is the type of talent he has and has worked extremely hard to earn all he has already accomplished. I expect him to contend for a spot at the state meet, and he would tell you the same thing.”

Westrom echoed his coach’s sentiments, saying that while there was some uncertainty to start the season, his feelings have changed following his performance at district.

“If I were being honest, coming into this season, I wasn’t sure of what my goals were,” Westrom said. “I just wanted to run a good time, but really wasn’t sure what a good time was. By halfway through the season, I decided that my goal was to make it to state.”

The Argyle teen said the season has surpassed his expectations.

“It’s better than imagined,” Westrom said. “If you would have told me back in December that I would have been district champ, I would have laughed. It has been a dream come true, but I am not done yet. There is still work to be done.”

Westrom said that what appeals to him the most about the sport of distance running is the grind.

“I just love training,” Westrom said. “If I were to show you all of my record runs, 90 percent of them would have been workouts and 10 percent would be meets or races. This sport involves non-stop training, and it has taught me that hard work pays off.”

Westrom said he probably enjoys basketball the most of the three sports in which he competes, but added that all three are important to his development as an athlete.

“Playing three sports helps because of the conditioning and discipline you have to put into each one,” Westrom said.

Westrom also likes to fish and golf and said competing in track and field and cross country this season has been instructive in more ways than one.

“It has taught me a lot about sacrifice and discipline,” Westrom said. “During the cross country season, I did not have good eating habits. I realized that if I wanted to take my training to the next level I had to eat healthier.  I had to sacrifice my diet and stay disciplined with my workout schedule. I would definitely prefer to be sleeping in on a Saturday morning, but instead I wake up early and run repeat 400’s.”

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