TRAVERSE CITY — As one book’s chapter closes, another one begins.
One day after he graduated from Traverse City Central, T.J. Schwannecke secured his immediate future when he signed a letter-of-intent to run track for Wagner College.
Schwannecke’s signing on Monday was the culmination of a standout career for Central’s top sprinter and a huge weight lifted off his shoulders.
“It feels awesome just to sign the paper, get it over with and know where I’m going to school next year and know I’m in a good spot. It was really stressful all through the spring just trying to figure out where I was going to go. It took a toll on me,” he said.
Schwannecke visited the Staten Island, N.Y., school two weeks ago, loved the opportunities that New York City offered and decided then and there to make his commitment to the Seahawks, who compete in the Northeast Conference.
“I really liked the kids on the team. I thought it was the best fit for me,” Schwannecke said. “Two completely different worlds (New York City and Traverse City), but I love the city. I’m excited to see where it takes me. I have a recruiting web site, NCSA, and they found me there, gave me a call and said they were interested. They liked my times and gave me an offer.”
Schwannecke is the reigning Big North Conference champion in the 100-meter dash and ran a season best 11.25 at the Record-Eagle Honor Roll meet. He also was a state qualifier with the Trojans’ 1,600 relay team that ran the second fastest time in school history in that event on Saturday (3:25.9). He also was among the north’s best in the 200 and 400, running season bests of 22.65 and 50.48, respectively.
“He’s just done a great job in the relays and in the opens. We asked him to do the 400, 200 and 100 and he excelled in all of them,” said TC Central boys track coach John Lober. “It’s pretty hard to be first in all of those events and he was. If he wasn’t first he was second, and we had some good runners in the conference this year.”