WILLIAMSBURG — Josh Patrick’s Williamsburg Lady Yellow Jackets track and field team were primed and ready to defend their regional championship this spring.

The Lady Yellow Jackets returned a solid nucleus of talent that included seniors Lillie Hall, Jenna Dople, Madison Chapman, and Allison Caddell but they didn’t get a chance to finish their high school careers with another regional title due to the COVID-19 pandemic canceling the season.

“The cancellation of the 2020 season is especially difficult in regards to our senior track and field athletes and their families,” Patrick said. “This particular group of young ladies have never lost a team region title. They each contributed so much to our team in so many different ways. Their goal was to continue their success this season and lead their team to another region title. With all that being said, I know this has been deeply upsetting and difficult for them to understand. I know this is not the way they wanted to end their track and field careers.

“This talented group of seniors is very endearing to me,” he added. “I have had the privilege to teach several of the girls in elementary school, coach them in basketball, and track and field during their time at Williamsburg High School. We have been through a lot together. It has been a blessing to get to know each of these girls and their wonderful families through the years. I am grateful for the many memories made along the way. Definitely a special group of young ladies.”

Patrick said his “prayer for my seniors is that they would not focus on what they have lost this season but focus on what they gained by being an integral part of the track and field program at Williamsburg High School.”

“We know adversity is a part of life,” he said. “It is the way we respond to adversity, not the adversity itself that matters. I would tell them to value adversity for the opportunity it is to learn and mature through it. Finally, I would want each of them to know how proud their coaches are of them for the way they represented their families, school, and community with Jacket Pride.”

Listed below are more comments from Patrick concerning his senior track and field student-athletes:

Allison Caddell

“Allison is a dual spring sport athlete. She split her time between softball and track and field. Allison is a hard worker and always has a great attitude and work ethic. She was a joy to coach.”

Madison Chapman

“Madison was our top returning thrower. She was preparing to compete for a region title in the throws this season. Madison loves to compete and was highly motivated to excel in the throws this year. She is an incredible student-athlete and young lady. Extremely proud of her and her achievements. A lot of great memories with this one that I will always cherish.”

Jenna Dople

“Jenna is an incredible student-athlete. She has improved each season. Jenna did anything and everything for our team. I utilized her in sprints and distance running. She was always willing to help her team in any way she could. I am super proud of this young lady and all that she has achieved.”

Lillie Hall

“Lillie is a stellar student-athlete. Lillie Hall is one of the top returning track and field athletes on this year’s team and in the region. She holds school records in triple jump and pole vault. She was preparing to compete for her third straight individual region title in pole vault. Lillie was a key component to the success of our team this season. I can’t say enough about Lil. She is a remarkable young lady on and off the track. We have been together since she was in fifth-grade and I think the absolute world of her. She has made her mark on our program and we celebrate her contribution to our program.”

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