Annika Lister making a big impact

Annika+Lister+prepares+to+throw+the+shot+put+in+a+meet+against+Monte+Vista.+She+would+end+up+with+the+best+shot+put+distance+of+anyone+in+the+meet+with+a+throw+of+30+feet%2C+2+inches.
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Annika Lister making a big impact

Annika Lister prepares to throw the shot put in a meet against Monte Vista. She would end up with the best shot put distance of anyone in the meet with a throw of 30 feet, 2 inches.

Annika Lister prepares to throw the shot put in a meet against Monte Vista. She would end up with the best shot put distance of anyone in the meet with a throw of 30 feet, 2 inches.

Photo courtesy of Cal High track and field

Annika Lister prepares to throw the shot put in a meet against Monte Vista. She would end up with the best shot put distance of anyone in the meet with a throw of 30 feet, 2 inches.

Photo courtesy of Cal High track and field

Photo courtesy of Cal High track and field

Annika Lister prepares to throw the shot put in a meet against Monte Vista. She would end up with the best shot put distance of anyone in the meet with a throw of 30 feet, 2 inches.

Cameron McKeon and Jenna Lyons, Staff Writers

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Junior Annika Lister is quickly becoming Cal High’s next track star. 

Lister has been on the track team since freshman year, participating and shining in both shot put and discus.

“She’s a natural team leader and works really hard every day,” senior teammate Allie Banducci said.

This season, Lister has already topped her discus record, with a throw of 97 feet during the Monte Vista meet. She also had the best shot put distance of anyone in the field at the Dougherty Valley meet. At that same meet, she achieved the third best discus distance.

Most impressively, Lister has yet to finish outside the top 10 in a meet in either of her events this season.

These exceptional numbers are no fluke.

Lister began to put it all together last year. She had a shot put distance of 31 feet 9.5 inches, an improvement of almost 3 feet from freshman year. She also bettered her discus distance by 8 feet, raising it to 96 ft 11 in.

And between her sophomore and junior years, Lister only got stronger through her Olympic lifting and training.

“She is strong, and she listens when both explaining and executing specific techniques,” her dad and throwing coach Dan Lister said.

Lister received her Top Performer shirt as a sophomore, recognizing that she was able to throw the shot put over 30 feet. 

“It made me feel proud because throwing is the only sport I’m good at,” Lister said of receiving the award.

Not only is she an up-and-coming star, but she is popular on the team and brings positive vibes to the group.

“We’re always joking around and she’s in the middle of it,” said Banducci, who describes Lister as “crazy good” when it comes to throwing.

Raised by two former star athletes, it was a matter of time before Lister excelled in track.

Her father and coach, Dan Lister, attended Cal State University in Hayward, participating in three track events: shot put, discus, and javelin. He met his wife, Suzie, in college. She was a track and field standout at Cal High in the early 1980s.

Dan Lister has a background in kinesiology, the study of body movements and biomechanics, which he feels makes him a better coach for his athletes.

“Throwing is a very technical sport,” he said. “I want the kids to get the best coaching techniques and training.”

He first introduced to the sport to his daughter when she was in sixth grade. He continues to motivate her as he works as the throwing coach at Cal. Although she’s a runner, her mom is a big inspiration for her as well.

When asked how she feels about working with her father on the team, Lister said, 

“It’s kind of weird, but he’s a really good coach for me,” she said.

Fellow teammates think having Lister’s dad as coach has been beneficial to the team. 

“It makes it more fun because he always jokes around,” senior Adam Newman said.

People may expect teammates to be hesitant of Lister’s dad being her coach, but members of the team say his positive and encouraging coaching style overshadows the father-daughter relationship. 

“I strive to be sure that Annika as well all the team members get the same coaching from me,” Dan Lister said. “When Annika graduates, I will still be coaching the same way.”

As for after high school, Lister would like to continue throwing, but more for fun than as a competitive sport.

“I would love Annika to continue throwing in college, but she has to want to do so herself,” Dan Lister said. “I won’t push her, but I do encourage her and the other athletes to continue track at the college level.”

Whether or not she carries her knack for track to the collegiate level, there’s no doubt Lister is making a huge impact on Cal’s track program.