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Seventh grade track star Alivia Urrutia displays some of her medals/ribbons she has won for her races that have elevated her to being No. 1 ranked in Alabama among her class in the 400-meter as a member of the Bob Jones High varsity track team. Photo- Pam Brewer, Keeperskeeper Photography

Alivia Urrutia Ranks No. 1 In Alabama As A Seventh Grade Track Star

MADISON- She’s fast. She’s smart. She’s an artist. She has a tremendous future ahead of her. All of these accolades are well deserved for 13-year old Alivia Urrutia who has received attention as being ranked the No. 1 seventh grade runner in Alabama in the 400-meter race in both the indoor and outdoor 2021-2022 seasons.

The Discovery Middle School student-athlete is a member of the Bob Jones High varsity track team and has also earned a No. 5 ranking in the United States for the indoor season and a No. 3 ranking among seventh graders nationwide for the outdoor track season.

“It wasn’t long ago I noticed I was good and I could go somewhere with track,” said Alivia, who also plays volleyball at Discovery. “I saw myself doing something in the future and I have set my goals to do so.”

On the backside of the closet door in her bedroom she has listed several goals she wanted to achieve and scratches through a goal once she has achieved her personal goal. Her current goals are running the 400-meter race in 56 seconds, the 200-meter event in 24 seconds and be able to jump-serve in volleyball. As for track goals, Alivia is close to marking through two of her goals as she has posted a 57.5 in the 400m and a 25.2 in the 200m.

She understands at times others remind her she is usually competing against older girls of high school age, but Alivia will not have any part of excuses. She said, “I feel like I should be just as good as the older girls.”

The daughter of Vanessa Walker, Alivia’s biological father lives in Louisville, Ky. Her stepfather, Adriel Walker, has been her coach since she began running and currently volunteers as a coach for the Bob Jones track team. Her brother, Jordan, is a sophomore at Bob Jones, and he, too, runs track and plays football for the Patriots. At the recent Metro Track Meet, Jordan took first place in the 200m and runner-up in the 100m. The family moved to Madison four years ago from Kentucky.

Besides playing volleyball for Discovery, Alivia is a member of the Rocket City Volleyball Club and its 13-U National Team. She participated in dance, gymnastics and soccer, but none of those sports seem to hit home for her as athletics didn’t seem to be working out for her and she began to suffer health issues.

“She was inactive and health issues began to arise while she was in the fourth grade,” said Vanessa. “We had to change her diet and with Adriel’s help as a coach we got her into running track, which we hoped would begin to slim her down. Alivia didn’t like track at first, but soon began to see improvement and gained confidence so she joined the summer track program.”

There was a moment in her first summer track participation Alivia said pushed her to want to succeed in the sport. “I was running a 100m race when I stumbled and came to a stop. I got mad, so ran as fast as I could and won the race,” added Alivia.

She’s already began thinking of college and the prospects of earning a full scholarship, running track and possibly becoming a civil engineer. With her superior athleticism and desire to succeed, her future looks as bright as any runner Bob Jones has had in recent memory.

Alivia was your typical young girl growing up in her neighborhood in Kentucky, running with her friends, her brother and her father. But there was one important piece of the puzzle that didn’t fit. “I didn’t like running. I disliked it,” said Alivia.

Standing 5-foot-6 and weighing 122 pounds, this dynamo of talent has showed her talents in the just completed school track season. In the Metro Meet, she took first place in both the 200m (26.38) and 400m (59.66). In the Sectional, she won the 400m (57.72) while at the State Meet she finished fourth in the 400m (57.52). As she’s progressed through the season she has seen her times continue to improve.

Like most athletes, Alivia gets into the same routine before each race in a sort of regimen for good luck. She wears the same uniform and undergarments and ties her shoes the same way each time she laces up is race preparation. While getting near the starting block she sings the song “Save Your Tears” by The Weekend in her head as a way of calming herself in anticipation of the starting gun. Once the explosive sound erupts, she comes out of the block fast. In the 400m, her style is to sprint the first 200 meters and then glide until coming out of the last curve where she kicks into another sprint to the finish. She admitted she has issues of running the curves, but with the help of her coaches she feels she has now nearly perfected her trips around the track in competition.

Away from the track Alivia likes artwork, drawing and making crafts and working on science projects. She also likes to cook. She’s an A-B student in the classroom and understands her studies are just as important for her future as trips around the track. She has the burning desire to succeed.

“I’m proud to have the state and national rankings, but I need to keep working,” added Alivia. “I don’t want to be second. I want to be number one.”

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