As the youngest of eight siblings, and coming from a family with a strong background in high school track and field, Daisy Valencia knew that she would be following in her family’s footsteps.
“Track has been a huge part of my life because my family is a huge part of my life,” says Valencia. “That’s where I first got my inspiration to do it.”
The Rosary Academy senior has been a four-year varsity participant both as a sprinter and a jumper, competing in the 100-meter, 200-meter and 4×100 meter relay races, as well as the triple jump and the long jump.
“It is very relaxing to me,” says Valencia of competing. “I love to do it, and I love to be with the group out on the track. It’s so exciting for me.”
As a senior leader for the Royals, the 18-year-old takes seriously her role in guiding her fellow teammates.
“I want to make sure they know what we’re striving to do,” says Valencia. “I make sure that they know that we still need to be focused because we win together and we lose together. I want to be winning more than losing.”
Valencia’s coaches agree that she’s a difference maker for the school’s track and field program.
“Daisy is very dedicated to her team and her sport,” says Rosary head varsity track and field coach, Jennifer Murphy. “She’s always one of the first girls to welcome a new athlete to the team. Her peers and coaches respect her because she has a very dedicated work ethic. Daisy is a teammate that everyone can count on.”
The Westminster resident is looking forward to continuing to compete in track and field in college, firmly rooted in the life lessons she’s gained at Rosary.
“I learned to take life not too seriously,” says Valencia. “And I learned that winning or losing, I just need to make sure that as long as I did my best, that I need to be proud of myself and not bring myself down.”
Valencia receives inspiration from her large family, who has supported her every step of the way. They serve as her role models and she strives to be the same for them.
“They are all my role models,” says Valencia of her family. “They are the people who are always on the track with me.”
Valencia sees her teammates as sisters and feels God is a “big part” of Rosary’s track team. Before each meet, she says words taught to her by her mom, “Jesus, I trust you,” in her native Spanish.
“That’s the first thing I say when I get on the track…before every single jump or when I’m on the blocks,” says Valencia. “I keep in mind that without him, I wouldn’t be able to do any of this. I’m fortunate and blessed.”