CHATHAM, NJ - Kristian Roos had just finished helping Chatham set a new school record in the shuttle hurdles, but he didn't have time to take in the accomplishment. His next task was to get to the shot put circle for his turn at the Morris County Relays held last week.

"My adrenaline was pumping," Roos said. "I had just run the hurdles and I had to run straight over to shot. My first throw was my best."

His personal-best throw of 42 feet, 1.75 inches - combined with teammate Sam Dennerlein's 48-1 - earned the Cougars second place in the shot put. Roos also ran the leadoff leg on Chatham's silver-medal-winning 4x200 team.

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In all, Roos participated in relays that gained Chatham 18 of its 37 points as the school won its first-ever Morris County Relays Championship. 

Kristian Roos is the Hawk Allstate Chatham Athlete of the Week.

"He can do almost anything up to a 200-meter distance," Chatham track coach Patrick Barry said. "In the spring, he has to worry about doing the long jump. He could be a decathlete.

"Kristian is probably one of the toughest competitors. You put him into an event and he gets to the final, he's a whole new animal. Once he gets into a final, watch out. At the state sectionals last spring, he was ranked eighth or ninth in the high hurdles and he placed second."

Roos already owns the Chatham outdoor 110 high hurdles record of 15.13, but he's still chasing the 55-meter hurdle indoor mark of 7.88. His best so far is 8.21.

In the spring, he runs the high hurdles, competes in the long jump and javelin, and then runs in a sprint event or throws the shot as his fourth event.

"It was a little hectic, I don't really mind (the number of events)," Roos said. "It gives me something to do. Sitting and waiting is the worst, that's when the nerves build up. It's better when you don't have time to think about it. Coach brought us in the day before and told us we had a chance to win and that we'd never won it before. The most memorable part is being able to say we're the first team to win it."

Roos is hardly done making memories at Chatham High, but the senior is also looking toward his future. 

"I'm going to see if I can walk on for kicking somewhere for football," Roos, who has yet to narrow his college choices, said.

Roos was just as versatile for the Chatham football team as he is for track and field. Last fall, he was the placekicker, punter, wide receiver and kick returner for the Cougars. In the season opener against Mount Olive, he kicked three field goals, including a Chatham school-record 49-yarder (see the video below).

Perhaps, inspired by Summit's Mike Badgley, who kicked for the San Diego Chargers in the NFL this season, Roos is going to pursue his kicking.

"It's all self-taught," Roos said. "I learn by watching youtube videos. Over the weekend I got a new pair of cleats and wanted to try them out. I hit a 50-yarder on my first kick. It's been pretty fun. I'm going to practice all summer and see what happens. You never know.

"I really enjoy pushing myself and see how far I can go. I like setting goals and pushing myself to make those goals."

 

Roos also plans to do Army ROTC training in college, and then pursue law enforcement as a career.

Toward that end, he did a week-long Junior Police Academy Camp through the Morris County Public Safety Youth Academy. It was there that he did some of the same training that police officers go through.

"I loved it," Roos said. "We got to go through their training and get a taste of what they can do. There is this one program where you get a fake glock with a laser and they put you through a scenario a police officer would face. It's a 3-D simulation and, depending on what you say, the computer sets off what will happen next. I was protecting hostages and doing other things."

Not surprisingly, Roos received the "Most Physically Fit" award at the academy camp.

Editor's note: The Hawk Allstate Chatham Athlete of the Week is sponsored by the John Hawk Agency. John and his team have been protecting local families and business owners for over 12 years. Call them at  973-635-9494 for a new auto, home, life and business insurance quote this week and if you mention the Hawk Allstate Chatham Athlete of the Week they will make a $20 contribution to the Chatham Booster Club! To learn more, visit the agency website