Charles Wright Academy senior Connor Currier signed a letter of intent on Thursday, April 20, to compete in track and field at Pacific Lutheran University beginning this fall. His family, coaches, trainer, teachers, and classmates were in attendance to celebrate his latest accomplishment with him.
Connor—a thrower whose events are shot put, discus, and javelin—first participated in track and field when he was in seventh grade. It took a full year for him to begin to enjoy the sport. “Eighth grade was the first time I had ever picked up a shot put, and I believed that I could enjoy that,” he recalls. It still took a while for it to become his passion, though. “I didn’t really fall in love with the sport until my junior year of high school, when on a Saturday in the middle of the season my assistant throwing coach Justin Holmes and I practiced together,” Connor says. “I really began to understand his passion for the sport, and at that moment I truly fell in love with it.”
Connor came to CWA as a freshman and captained the team his junior and senior years, and this spring he has three Nisqually League season records so far: 40 feet and five inches in the 12-pound shot put, 120 fee and three inches in the 1.6kg discus, and 114 feet and one inch in the 800g javelin. “An athlete must have two elements to be successful: drive and personality,” says track and field head coach Jon Flies. “Connor is one of the most persistent and driven athletes I have worked with. He spends more time working on his technique than any other student athlete on the team. To compliment his drive, his personality makes Connor stand out. He is conscientious and caring as well as a natural leader.”
Pacific Lutheran University athletics compete in the Northwest Conference, which comprises nine colleges and universities in Washington state and Oregon. In late April the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) ranked the PLU men’s track and field team ninth in the NCAA Division III West Region. “Connor’s strengths as an athlete are that he enjoys working out and strives to get better each day,” says assistant coach Dan Salazar, who joined CWA athletics as a throwing coach this year. “Going forward to college, the PLU coaches will have a go-getter on the team and, if he keeps the same attitude, a future leader of the Lutes track and field team.”
Connor is looking forward to bringing his “unique outlook” to PLU. “At most, all throwing events take about four to nine seconds; there’s very little time to enjoy throwing during the throw,” he explains. “The enjoyment, for the most part, comes from the culture of throwers. Everyone knows each other and cheers for each other; there’s a fair bit of lighthearted joking. What I’ve taken away from my four years in track at CWA is that for throwers, it doesn’t matter what school everyone is from. Long-standing rival schools will end up talking like old friends.”
First-year PLU head track and field coach Adam Frye was a big factor in Connor’s interest in becoming a Lute. “Coach Frye really seemed excited about the prospect of me going there,” Connor says. “When I visited a PLU track practice and talked with their throwing coach, I felt like he really knew what he was doing and quite enjoyed talking to him about the ins and outs of throwing. We had a conversation about who our favorite throwers were. I really felt like I made a solid connection with the coach. I’m most looking forward to becoming a Lute to continue my throwing career at a great program. I’m very blessed that I’ve made it this far in my athletic and academic career and thankful that I can keep doing something that I really love.”