PA Salute To Seniors: Tyler Ross - Greater Latrobe
What was your most memorable race/competition?
My most memorable race was my sophomore year when I lived in FL. It was the regional meet, and there were some incredible athletes there competing. My year's PR was 50.8, and I needed to run that time to make finals. I made the finals in 50.7, which seeded me 5th. I needed to get top 4 to make states, and multiple runners in the finals have run sub 50, so I knew I needed to step up my game. I ended up running a 49.01 to win the regional meet by .02.
Where did you face your biggest competition?
My biggest competition had to of been my teammate Jeff Elam in practice. When I moved to Pennsylvania, I knew about him already because I was originally from Latrobe. All year we pushed ourselves from start to finish. I never wanted him to beat me, and he never wanted me to beat him.
Out of all of your high school accomplishments, which stands out the most?
Out of all of my high school accomplishments winning indoor states this year has outweighed everything else. It was an incredible feeling to win gold in a new uniform and new state.
If you could do it all over again, what would you change about your athletic career in high school?
If I could do high school track all over again, I would do more to prevent injury. Nothing is more disappointing than getting injured in my opinion.
What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?
There were two really hard obstacles I've had to overcome in my high school career. Going in chronological order, my first obstacle was Junior year, in Florida, when I was DQ'd in the 400m prelim at my district meet. The year before I won districts in the 400m; I really wanted to PR, and I accidentely jumped the gun and false started. I was left running the 800m, which I wasn't very strong at. I ended up making states and medaling; I dropped 8 seconds in order to do so. A second obstacle I had to overcome was this year during the outdoor season. At New Balance Indoor Nationals I strained my hamstring and had off and on pain with my leg throughout the season. It made it very hard to run; I was very lucky to even make states this year because of it. I thank god and my determination to overcome these obstacles.
What will you miss the most?
I will miss the practices the most, by far. Both when I was in FL competing, and in PA competing, I had some of the best times at practice. I had met some awesome people throughout my track years in High School, and I will miss the good times we had when practice ended. Team ice baths this year were awesome.
Do you have any advice for younger athletes?
Advise I would give to younger athletes is to stay humble. I learned a lot through my senior year, and now I understand that there is a difference to being confident, and being cocky. I understand that it's good to be confident and believe in yourself, but nobody really enjoys being around a cocky person. Your times will speak for themselves when you're on the track, and chances are, if you're a good athlete, people will already know about you.
How have your coaches influenced your performances and your life goals overall?
My coaches influenced my performances and life goals by letting me know, personally, about experiences they had. I consider myself a person to learn through others mistakes, and I've leaned an awlful lot through my coaches telling me about situations they've been in, and how they played out.
What are your college plans?
I am attending Eastern Michigan University with one of my best friends, Jeff Elam. I am going to be majoring in Environmental Sciences and minoring in Zoology. Eventually, I would like to get my PhD so I can teach either Oceanography or Marine Biology in college. I will also be getting a personal training certification so I can hopefully coach along the way.
Shout-Out to my dad, Justin Ross! I love you dad, and I know that you always have my back through everything I do. Before I get into the blocks, I feel your spirit next to me, and when I run, I feel you next to me, and when I finish, I feel you smile. I miss you, and I pray for you to push me every time I run. You've always been there, and I couldn't appreciate it more. Rest in peace.
Shout-Out to Alexa Ulrich! Although we had our struggles when you were here with me, I know that you always cared. Although you're not physically next to me anymore, I know you are here spiritually. You've helped me a lot through my running career thus far, and I continue to pray for you to be by my side through the finish. I miss you, and I will continue to ask for your guidance. Rest in peace.
Shout-Out to my Grandma and Grandpa Noel! You guys supported me throughout my whole track career and I can't thank you enough. You are the nicest, and most good hearted people I've ever met. I am so lucky to have you guys in my life, and it brings tears to my eyes knowing that I have someone who cares for me as much as you guys do. Love you!
Shout-Out to coach Leavey! Thanks for being my coach, my mentor, and my friend. You mean a lot to me, and I couldn't appreciate the things you've taught me more.
Shout-Out to Jeff Elam! Thanks for being my friend, training partner, and college roommate. I am pumped to spend these next 4 years together man.
Shout-Out to coach Murray/Mehalic! Thanks for the workouts, encouragement, and mental preparation you've brought to me. I learned a lot this season about being mentally strong, and I couldn't appreciate it more.
Shout-Out to Oliver Philogene! Man, you killed it at states! I wish I could have been healthy and strong this season so you could have had someone to push you to 46 in the finals lol.
Shout-Out to coach Goodridge! I can tell you believe in both Jeff's, and my talent. Thanks for recruiting us to EMU. It was a hard choice between North Carolina, and Eastern, but I feel I've made the best choice. I am looking forward to developing a strong athlete-coach relationship.
Shout-Out to Milan Lee! You only ran one year of track, but you've always been there for me when you weren't running. I love you like a brother, and I know you will always be right there to support me man.
Shout-Out to the people I've met throughout my track career. I've met a lot of good people in both FL, and PA. There are people I didn't name that have influenced me to be the best I can be. I would not trade my track career for even the best of athletes because I know the people that I've met so far along the way are good people that don't come around often. Thanks everyone!