HH’s Flash


Brian right before record break. Credit: Heather Schwartz.

On Sept. 30, senior Brian DiCola broke two statewide records at the Paul Short meet in Lehigh Valley.

One of those records was the Paul Short meet record of 2021, originally set by Garry Martin of Archbishop Wood.

The record was broken in 6 seconds–Brian’s time was 14:43, which broke not only Garry Martin’s record but also the Lehigh course record.

The Lehigh record was set by Paul Springer in 2007 at 14:47. These two records are No. 2 across the state for cross country, while also being the fastest times on a PA course.

Since the start of the season in July until now, Brian’s goal was to beat those two records. I interviewed Brian to see what he had to say about this event.

Brian (left) at Paul Shore meet. Credit: Heather Schwartz.

He said that at the start of his training, “I wasn’t confident that I could do it because it was such a challenging feat,” but “the people around me like my teammates and the people I ran against helped me get to the point I’m at today.”

Brian was thinking about breaking these records last year when he ran 4:11 in a mile for outdoor spring track.  He was motivated to break these records ever since then, but what kept him motivated throughout that time?

He says that it was his parents and his teammates around him. 

“My parents ran. I got those deep roots of running in my blood now, so they motivate me, and my teammates motivate me. I love my team, and they helped me get to this point. I’d also say I’m a fierce competitor and I have the will to win.”

Brian likes to listen to old music, like 60’s and 70’s music, which is another thing that keeps him going. 

He also plans on going to the state meet this season as well which the next challenge he wants to face. 

Brian said the state meet is, “going to be a very hard meet to win because of a runner named Drew Griffin from Butler County. It’s going to be tough.” Brian and Drew run similar speeds, which is why this will be such a challenge.

After that, if Brian does manage to win against Drew, he wants to move on to the East Bay Northeast Regional, which qualifies the top ten runners for the East Bay Nationals hosted in San Diego, CA.

Brian gave this advice for people who want to start or improve in running: “Just be consistent and put in the time. If you do the work, results will follow. In my opinion, this goes with anything difficult. If you just be consistent with the work you have to put in, you can accomplish anything.”

“Just be healthy, running in general is great for you,” Brian said. “If you’re on the fence about it, why not try doing it? It’s very fun and it’s good for you.”