Sarah Radle and Charles Sheh shine as The Occidental’s Athletes of the Week

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Sarah Radle (first year), this week’s Athlete of the Week, is a member of the women's swim team at Occidental College in Los Angeles. Oct. 21, 2021. Charles Sheh (senior), this week’s Athlete of the Week, is a member of the men’s cross country team at Occidental College in Los Angeles. Oct. 21, 2021. Em Balaghi /The Occidental

Sarah Radle

Sarah Radle (first year) started her college swimming career at the Bulldog Pentathlon hosted by Redlands University Oct. 16. Radle’s versatility was on full display in the 100 yard individual medley — a new NCAA swim & dive event as of 2015 — where her time of 1:00.66 broke the Occidental school record. Radle competed in four other events and placed highly in all, finishing seventh in the 100-yard backstroke, sixth in the 100-yard breaststroke, third in the 100-yard butterfly and first in the 100-yard freestyle.

Radle said she credits her teammates for helping her to adjust to both college life and swimming on the team.

“Everyone on the team is really welcoming — they’ve all been super kind,” Radle said. “We get along, both inside the pool and outside, and we spend a lot of time together, which has really helped me adjust to college.”

Men’s and women’s swim & dive head coach Haley Mitchell said she was confident in Radle heading into the meet due to her consistent training and performance in practices.

“Sarah has been very consistent in her training this fall and not surprisingly she was very consistent in her racing on Saturday,” Mitchell said via email. “She’s a great competitor and I’ve been impressed with her composure under pressure.”

Radle said she is excited to participate in more meets and spending time with her teammates.

“I’m really excited for my first SCIACs. I’m not really sure how college swimming works,” Radle said. “I think it’s really interesting to see how the season is going to go, especially coming out of not having a season last year.”

Mitchell said she is excited to continue coaching Radle and seeing her achieve more in the future.

“She’s a great teammate and it’s fun to see her teammates motivated by, and share in, her success. I’m looking forward to seeing what she can do this year and beyond!” Mitchell said via email.

Charles Sheh

Charles Sheh (senior) finished with the fastest time among Occidental’s varsity cross country runners this past weekend, completing the 8K race in 25:25.4 minutes. The cross country team ran in two different meets Oct. 16, with some runners competing at the UCR Highlander Invitational in Riverside, CA, and others traveling to Rock Island, IL, to compete in the Augustana Interregional Invitational. Sheh was one of the runners who competed at the Augustana Interregional Invitational, where he finished 49 of 232 runners.

Sheh said Bartlett’s training prepared him to push through discomfort and focus on the competition.

“I think that’s all on our coach Rob Bartlett, just trusting the process. I just go out there, not trying to think too much and just run hard, that’s all you have to do,” Sheh said. “I felt pretty bad, honestly, the legs were hurting a little bit. I was pretty down that day but you gotta forget about everything when the gun goes up and just focus on running.”

Bartlett praised Sheh’s approach to training and competition, citing Sheh’s level-headed approach as a main contributor to his success.

“The thing I’m most impressed with, with Charles, is the way he approaches competition. I think it is really special. He’s very level-headed; he doesn’t get too emotional and doesn’t get too carried away,” Bartlett said. “He’s able to treat all competitions almost the same as he treats practice and I think that’s a unique skill to possess.”

Although he may be calm in his approach to competitions, Sheh also possesses an understated sense of humor, according to Bartlett.

“He’s sneaky funny. Both he and his brother [Joe Sheh (senior)], they’re quiet, but when they do say something, it’s always worth listening to,” Bartlett said. “I’m just grateful to have had Charles on the team — he’s a good teammate and someone who’s very easy to coach, because he works hard, doesn’t take things overly seriously but has just the right kind of intensity.”

Sheh and the cross country team will compete in the SCIAC championships in Claremont, CA Oct. 30. To prepare for the meet, Sheh said he will stick to his normal routine, but will fuel up with a treat to give himself an extra boost.

“I’ll have a couple of Little Caesars’ extra most-bestest pepperoni pizza a few days out just to really keep the body fuel stores at a maximum but that’s probably about it, nothing new,” Sheh said.