WEST POINT — Look at Gwendolyn Logan’s eyes as she splits the hurdles. They are not fixated on a finish line. She sees further than that, beyond a white stripe separating her from everyone else in her wake.
“One of these days,” Gwendolyn sings in an original song, “you will see me flying higher.”
There have been grounding forces all around Logan, the Goshen junior hurdler and triple jumper. Growing up black in a mostly white school district, Logan has navigated through life in a place where she believes racism and microaggressions toward people of color are commonplace.
“I was the only colored person,” Logan said. “The only person on the bus, in school, everything …”
Logan, who placed first in the 55-meter hurdles at Friday’s Section 9 state qualifying meet in 8.56 seconds, is more an athlete. She is a musician — self-taught in the violin — an artist and an activist. Her mother, Theresa, claims, “She knows what she wants.”
At school, Logan said, white kids say the “N” word around her. They think it’s okay because they have black friends. She wants to tell them to stop, but “you can’t really speak out about it because then they’ll think you’re crazy.” She recalled this week she believes a history teacher graded her paper wrong and didn’t listen to her concerns with the same regard of the white students.
Songwriting has been an outlet. Track and field, too. Goshen sprint coach Gus Lawson walked by the press area after Logan’s hurdles win and said, “She’s as good as it’s going to be.” Joe Manaseri, head girls coach, added, “Everything we do is together and it’s a culture over time. I think that’s what makes Gwen so comfortable feeling like she can come to us.”
Christopher Logan, her father, said of Gwendolyn’s athletic achievements, “It was just a matter of time.”
He may as well have been talking about it all. Nothing will keep Logan from flying higher.
TRACK AND FIELD
Section 9 state qualifier
Key: Cornwall (COR); Ellenville (ELL); Goshen (G); James I. O’Neill (JIO); Kingston (K); Marlboro (MAR); Middletown (MID); Minisink Valley (MV); Monroe-Woodbury (MW); Monticello (MON); Newburgh (NFA); New Paltz (NP); Ontoera (ONT); Pine Bush (PB); Port Jervis (PJ); Valley Central (VC); Wallkill (WAL); Warwick (WAR)
55-meter dash: 1. Sam Rodriguez (WAL) 7.31; 2. Nancy Johnson (NFA) 7.44*; 3. Dana Clarke (PJ) 7.48; 55 hurdles: 1. Gwendolyn Logan (G) 8.56; 2. Taina DeJesus (MON) 8.63; Lindsay Ward (COR) 8.74*; 300: 1. Bianca Staples (VC) 41.54; 2. Dolce McPherson (FAL) 41.98; 3. Sania Kuylen (NFA) 43.06; 600: 1. Katherine Smith (WAR) 1:37.63; 2. Alexandria North (FDR) 1:38.18; 3. Kirsten McKenna 1:39.52*; 1,000: 1. Sarah Trainor (FDR) 2:57.87; 2. Kayla Schram (G) 2:59.76; 3. Amilia Wise-Sweat (NFA) 3:03.03*; 1,500 race walk: 1. Mia Sisilli (MW) 7:19.22; 2. Maggie Petrich (MW) 7:23.48; 3. Olivia Hansen (COR) 7:32.73; 3,000: 1. Karrie Baloga (COR) 9:49.16; 2. Evelyn Valle-Gonzalez (MW) 10:35.74; 3. Anne Hagan (WAS) 11:16.91; 1,600 relay: 1. Monroe-Woodbury (Angela Fini, Jhayde Warren, Emily Dovico, Ava Turner) 4:08.98; 2. Warwick (Katherine Smith, Kristin Thompson, Jade Liguori) 4:24.78; 3. Washingtonville (Kieran Bray-Jones, Taylor Connington, Amanda Murphy, Amber Chaing) 4:28.27; 3,200 relay: 1. Cornwall (Karrie Baloga, Claire Kelly, Julia Samuelson) 9:27.08; 2. Goshen (Kirsten McKenna, Sara Tippin, Meghan O’Donnell, Kayla Schramm) 9:43.09; 3. Valley Central (Ava Carsley, Kelly O’Connor, Sophie Steger) 10:12.57; High jump: 1. Lucci Robertson (ONT) 5-5; 2. Bianca Staples (VC) 5-4; 3. Areyanna McCarthy (G) 4-10; Pole vault: 1. Alicia Johnson (MW) 10-9; 2. Lily Beattie (WAR) 10-3; 3. Caroline Fatta (WAR) 10-3*; Shot put: 1. Julia Garcia (COR) 39-3; 2. Isabella Fabrizio (COR) 38-0; 3. Adrienne Crawford (K) 35-8.5; Weight throw: 1. Julia Garcia (COR) 55-10.5; 2. Lauren Townsend (K) 55-10.5; 3. Leah Carvajal (MAR) 41-8.5*