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Skyview senior Teddy Beaver using track season to get ready for rigors of West Point

Sprinter wants to improve on his personal best of 11.14 seconds in the 100 meters

By Meg Wochnick, Columbian staff writer
Published: March 25, 2022, 9:00pm
5 Photos
Skyview High senior sprinter Teddy Beaver is working to better his 100-meters best time of 11.14 seconds he set last spring.
Skyview High senior sprinter Teddy Beaver is working to better his 100-meters best time of 11.14 seconds he set last spring. (Amanda Cowan/The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Perhaps it’s fitting Teddy Beaver learned of his appointment to the United States Military Academy surrounded by friends, teammates and coaches who’ve been influential throughout Beaver’s Skyview High School career.

It was last month when Beaver, a senior standout in football and track and field, received a notification on his phone a new file was added to his candidacy profile.

He opened his Chromebook inside the school’s weight room. It was his acceptance letter to West Point. Then came the outbursts of joy.

“Just to be right there and share that experience with them,” Beaver said. “It was a really cool moment.”

Beaver’s family has a history of service. His father, Ryan, is a West Point graduate, and so is an uncle. His great-great grandfather stormed the beaches of Normandy, France, and fought in the Battle of the Bulge during World War II.

Beaver calls it a privilege and honor to continue the family’s deep history of service, and feels a calling toward serving the country. He departs for West Point, N.Y., two weeks following Skyview’s June 12 graduation.

“I’ve always felt pride for this country,” Beaver said. “This is the greatest country on earth, I believe, and just the freedoms we’re allowed here in this country and the opportunities we’re given. Not everybody in this world is blessed with. And I think there’s a certain calling toward that. I feel there’s a calling to defend those rights and to just serve the country.”

Last fall, Beaver was a three-way all-4A Greater St. Helens League honoree in football at receiver, defensive back and on special teams leading the Storm to the 4A state preliminary round. In track and field, he shines in the sprints, but he’s also using this spring season for something else: getting in shape.

Known for his burst of speed, Beaver said he realized during last fall’s Candidate Fitness Assessment (CFA) that while he’s fast, he can be in better shape.

The CFA consists of six physical- and motor-fitness events designed to evaluate a candidate’s potential to successfully engage the physical program at the United States Service Academies.

The hardest test for Beaver to do? The 1-mile run.

“You think you’re a good athlete and you’re in good shape,” he said. “Then you try to run four laps (around a track) and you realize you’re not in the shape you think you are.

“I was one lap in and I was like, ‘I’m going to die. I don’t know if I’m going to make it.’ And this was just one lap.”

For the record, Beaver did complete the mile. But that, in part, is why he’s using this track and field season to not only improve on his personal-best 100 meter time, but also work on his endurance for West Point. He’s one of the 4A GSHL’s top returning sprinters who specializes in the 100 meters and the 4×100 relay. Last spring, he ran a personal-best 11.14 seconds in the 100.

As special as the United States Military Academy is, it also reminds him of another special institution: Skyview. From teammates and classmates to coaches to teachers, Beaver is grateful for it all.

What appealed Beaver to West Point, he said, is a challenge and opportunity he can’t find anywhere else. That goes for Skyview, too, where leadership roles in football, track and field and student government helped Beaver prepare to tackle new ways to be part of something bigger than him.

“I’ve had a lot of blessings in my life,” Beaver said. “It’s absolutely not all on me; it’s the people that have surrounded me and the people at Skyview that have given me opportunities to continue to grow and become the best version of myself.”