Unified track wraps up spring season: Big team, bigger bonds

May 12, 2024

Dartmouth High School unified track has a big team this year, with 47 students involved — perfect for fostering relationships and building athleticism, according to Head Coach John Breault. 

Breault said unlike other sports, unified track isn’t about who wins and who loses, it’s about socializing, accepting differences and building relationships.

Part of the force creating that environment for friendship are the seniors, he said. The team celebrated its 12 seniors at Seniors’ Night in the gymnasium before the meet against Brockton High School on Tuesday, April 30. The meet marked the end of the regular season and the start of post season.

Breault noted how “great” it is to see a mix of seniors, with some having been involved for years and others coming out for the first time this season.

“All those kids,” he said, “have had some type of impact that will last much longer than when they are gone in June.”

He added, “I think that’s the special part about senior day each year and this group is really special because a lot of them have been involved since they walked in here freshman year.”

Sophie Gelinas and Lillian Tigano are two of those seniors.

“I can’t play regular sports because I can’t keep up with the other kids,” Tigano said. Therefore, she signed up for track first thing her freshman year. In joining unified track, she has been able to participate in sports and make friends.

Looking back, she now has lasting memories such as the bus rides to sectionals and the time the team amped themselves up before the big meet by all singing “We Are the Champions” on the way there.

Overall, Tigano said unified track has “been fun and has taught us a lot about inclusivity.”

Gelinas said for her it has been “very fun,” as well. 

She joined her freshman year and has been meeting new people and making friends ever since. 

Makayla DeSouza, Olivia Bloom-Glover and Nick Silva are all seniors who joined unified track for the first time this year, but they aren’t here just to work on their javelin.

All three said they joined because they wanted to meet new people and make friends. 

It also served as an alternative to the high-competitive atmosphere of other spring sports.

“It’s just way different than regular track,” DeSouza said. “I thought this would be a better choice for senior year since it's just way more fun.”

Silva said, “I love it. I think it’s so fun,” adding how he is happy the program is made available at the school.