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Despite suffering a hamstring injury, Dalton Brown proved a top-notch leader as a senior for the Haddam-Killingworth boys’ outdoor track team this season. (Photo courtesy of Dalton Brown )
Through the relays, sprints, jumps, and even an injury, Dalton Brown never stopped dedicating himself to the sport of track and field at Haddam-Killingworth. Along the way, Dalton set a great example for his younger teammates by serving as the consummate leader for the Cougars.
Dalton recently graduated from H-K, where he helped the football team advance to the championship game of the Class S State Playoffs for the first time in program history last fall. Dalton was also a member of the Cougars’ indoor and outdoor track teams, becoming a key contributor in the long jump, the high jump, the 200, and the 4x100 relay.
In his final season this spring, Dalton injured a hamstring while doing a jump early on in the campaign. The injury prevented Dalton from competing, but it couldn’t keep him from caring about his teammates.
“Even though I injured my hamstring, I always tried to help out any way I could,” says Dalton. “Working out to stay in shape for my other sports certainly helped me in my track career with building strength. I always dedicated myself to being the best and strongest on the team. In events, I tried to not think about others and just focused on myself. I worried about what I had to do and just trying to get as many points as possible for the team.”
Dalton had the foundation to be a great athlete when he entered H-K as a freshman. Still, Dalton knew that he needed to develop his leadership abilities in order to support his teammates during those moments of doubt.
“I was athletic my freshman year, but I didn’t have the leadership mentality yet,” Dalton says. “It was about being confident with myself, and then finding the ability to lead others through things they might not be comfortable with. A key part of being a leader is just being a role model.”
Despite being sidelined, Dalton never wavered when it came to lending a hand to his fellow Cougars. Dalton says that he received a big boost of motivation from one of H-K’s assistant coaches.
“Going into this year, I knew I had to play a significant role with helping the jumpers and sprinters,” says Dalton. “Even with the injury, I still reached out to the other teammates and helped them. Our assistant coach Leah Pfrommer really helped me see my impact on others.”
Head Coach Matt Diglio was sad when Dalton’s final campaign with the outdoor team came to an abrupt end. However, Diglio felt proud to see Dalton keep his commitment to the Cougars all season long.
“Dalton is a very responsible and impressive young man. He is very focused and goal oriented in the classroom, as well as on the track and football field,” Diglio says. “As one of our top sprinters and jumpers, Dalton was looking forward to having a successful spring season, but unfortunately pulled his hamstring. That injury sidelined him for the remainder of the season, but Dalton showed his outstanding character and leadership skills by still coming to practice every day and every meet to support the team and his teammates.”
Dalton learned a lot about life through all the hours that he spent training rigorously at H-K. Dalton gained a great deal as a result, most notably the relationships that he formed with his coaches and teammates.
“As an athlete, track really helped push myself to my limits,” says Dalton. “Coach Diglio knows how to put in a good workout that really pushes you. Through being on the team, it really helped me become a better leader and communicator as a person with others.”