Team chemistry is a big part of having a strong season; luckily for the track team, they have two athletes whose chemistries are almost identical.
Skyler and Alexis Gauthier are both runners on the track team. The two run the same events and have been competing together since middle school.
Both Skyler and Alexis grew up in Swanzey, NH, and attended Monadnock Regional High School where they did indoor as well as outdoor track and field and cross country.
At Keene State, the twins compete in indoor and outdoor track and field, as well as cross country.
The girls are now preparing to compete at the New England Division III Championships at Bowdoin College in Brunswick Maine.
Alexis explained that the twins are very close and work out together frequently. Alexis said, “We’re always training together, I think both of us like having someone to train with so it makes things a lot better.”
Both of them run hurdles, jumps and multis, and are competing in the New England Division III Championships on Friday and Saturday. [Multis in track stand for multiple events for women’s indoor track these consist of the 800 meter run, the 60 meter hurdles, the long jump, the high jump and shot put.]
At the LEC Championship at Plymouth State last Saturday, Alexis won the 60 meter hurdles with a time of 9.53 seconds, beating her sister by 6 hundredths of a second. Skyler came in second at 9.59 seconds.
The girls are very competitive with each other both during workouts and in meets, Skyler said, “I feel like we’re more competitive with each other than we are with other teams, for some reason. We’ve always been like that even throughout high school.”
Coach Nick Athanasopoulos said, “Sometimes you can sense some competitiveness between the two more so than you can sense competitiveness between two individuals in general.”
Often times people get identical twins confused. Athanasopoulos said he does not have that problem, “I’ve known them since they were freshman in high school, I did a little coaching over at Monadnock when they were there.”
Alexis had a slow start caused by some nagging injuries. She said, “I had more injuries this season coming off of cross country, so it was hard for me to transition into training with the team because I was trying to focus on getting myself healthy again.”
Once she got healthy, Alexis began to have a great year. ”I didn’t start competing until the second meet after break, but once I started going I was continuously PRing,” Alexis said. [In track and field a PR stands for a personal record, which is your career personal best for an event.]
When talking about the season so far, Skyler said, “It started off a little slow, but definitely the training is catching up now, finally so PRs are happening almost every meet.”
Indoor track has a long season, spanning from Dec. 1 to March 9. In this time period there are 16 meets.
While they are very competitive with each other, the twins push each other to be better. Skyler said, “We definitely push each other, we’re always giving each other advice on things and helping each other.”
Sometimes with competition comes trash talk; that is not the case with these two. Skyler said, “Actually we’re more supportive of each other.”
Skyler then said, “I was warming up for hurdles and high jump, and Alexis was already long jumping so I was warming up around the long jump area.”
Through all of the training and meets they compete in together, they see the work they put in pay off. Alexis said, “You get to see all of the work since we’re training together, you get to see all of the workouts and progression that we have throughout the season, so it’s nice knowing everything ended up working out.”
Austin Smith can be contacted