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Season Interrupted: Peninsula track star Aiden Lieb pays it forward

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Throughout the spring, The Times will interview high school seniors whose athletic careers were cut short by the coronavirus outbreak.

Name: Aiden Lieb

School: Rolling Hills Estates Peninsula

Sport: Track, hurdles

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Key stats: Won the Southern Section Division 2 110-meter high hurdles as a junior

Summer plans: Take July off after training in June.

Fall plans: Will attend UCLA.

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On learning he couldn’t compete in the Arcadia Invitational:

“To have that pulled from me, it would have given me a chance to prove myself. I’m very distraught because of it.”

The difficulty of training without a team:

“It’s definitely challenging training by yourself. I’ve been training myself for a month-and-a-half. It takes a toll not having laughs at practice. It kind of deprives you of exciting parts of track and field. It’s a very social sport.”

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What’s he’s focusing on in his training:

“I’m trying to improve my balance and get more nimble and flexible. I’m working on handstands and doing more yoga.”

What he misses the most:

“Competing. You train for nine months to go against some of the best in the country and then all the nine months is pulled away from you.”

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On the lessons he’s learned:

“To stay more composed. Having your season canceled, it is real easy to get upset, blame somebody or some thing. I don’t feel that’s the right mind-set to have. Yes, it’s upsetting but having that ruin a sport for you is something I wanted to avoid.”

Where he sees himself in 10 years:

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“I hope to stick with track. I’d love to be passing on my knowledge. A dream other than professional track is to help young athletes grow and aspire to be whatever they strive to be. I’ve had a lot of people tell me I can’t be a professional. I don’t have what it takes. It’s very hard to overcome everybody who doesn’t think you can do it. I want to be that support system that believes in young athletes.”

Video interviews of each athlete can be found at latimes.com/sports/highschool.


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