Boys Varsity Track, Girls Varsity Track · Girls Athlete of the Month – April 2017

Girls Student Athlete: Sariah Rees

I first met Sariah when she ran on the city youth track team Red Rockets. One thing that stuck out to me then and remains true today is her positive attitude. She always has a smile and is constantly trying to improve. Just this last weekend we competed in the Grizzly Invite, where Sariah competed in the 400m, javelin, and the 4X400 relay. Where she got a season record in the 400m and took third in the 4X400, and the first words out of her mouth after both races were I can go faster. The 4X400 team was just one second off state qualifying, and they took 10 seconds off their previous time from just one week earlier. I have two names for Sariah, Beast Mode, and Bumble Bee. If you have ever seen her compete in the 400m, Beast Mode is the only name that even comes close to doing her justice, especially if she is behind. The 400m is one of, if not the hardest races in track. So it comes as no surprise to me that it would be her race. She may not always win, but I have never once seen her leave anything at the finish line. Bumble Bee is simply because according to science they shouldn’t be able to fly, and according to me as a thrower, being around 5’4”ish she just shouldn’t be able to run the 400 the way she does. She loves throwing the javelin, and has chosen this year to focus on it, and yet she still comes out and consistently runs a fast 400m.

A couple weeks ago Sariah strained her hamstring, and had to sit out to let it heal, which was a very difficult thing for me. Not just for losing her on the track, but because I almost had to assign other athletes to watch over her, to make sure she was resting. Every day she would say “I think it’s better, I can run now.” I would have to tell her not yet, then she would sneak away and try, and come back and tell me “I guess I can still feel it, dang it.” Then the first meet back she decided instead of running her normal 400m, she wanted to try the 800m, which if the 400 isn’t the hardest race, the 800 is! Never having run it before she just took off won her heat, and of course finished saying “I can go faster, that wasn’t so bad.” She is such a great example to all the athletes on the team, not only with her positivity, but also to show them what they are capable if they apply themselves. She maintains a 4.0 GPA, along with competing in multiple sports, and being the student body president, and I’m sure many other things.

The school and the track team will not be the same without her there next year. I know that wherever she ends up they will be better because of it, and she will accomplish amazing things in her life. I have told her since the first day I met her that I expect big things from her, and she has yet to disappoint.

Chad Hurst, Head Track Coach 

It has been my distinct pleasure to, not only teach Sariah but to coach her in basketball.  In working with her, I have seen a young woman that is truly one of the great ones and someone that as Coach Hurst said “will accomplish amazing things.”

In class, she was always so well prepared and engaged but the thing that was most impressive was the energy, enthusiasm and great attitude she always brought to the classroom.  When she stepped on the basketball court, nothing changed.  She brought that same outstanding attitude and work ethic with her.  If you ever say hi to Sariah in the hall you do not get the token hi, you get and enthusiastic hello accompanied by a giant, warm smile.

Most people do not realize an amazing award she received just 2 weeks ago; she was one of five students in the entire state.  The state athletic directors association for the top five students in the state gives this award.  This award is determined from their GPA, their ACT and an essay where they write about their accomplishments and what high school sports has done for them.  Sariah is the first student from Bear River to receive this award, which is really saying something.   I am proud to say that Sariah is a former student and basketball player of mine but I am most proud to call her my friend!


Van Park, Athletic Director

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