Athlete of the Week Sam Berger hammers out a new personal record

Sam Berger (first year), member of Oxy Track & Field Team, at Occidental College in Los Angeles, CA. March 21, 2023. Liang Zhu/The Occidental

Sam Berger

Sam Berger (first year), a thrower for the track and field team, beat his previous personal record (PR) by almost 20 feet (136’10”) at the recent Redlands Invite March 17.

According to Berger, he first started throwing after taking a break from his high school tennis team and decided to join track and field during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I played tennis for like eight years, and then in high school, and as COVID came around, I ended up quitting,” Berger said. “I had a lot of friends in track and field, so during high school, I just kind of tried out different stuff like jumping, so now I’m doing hammer [throw].”

Fellow thrower, Evan Lieber (first year), said that Berger’s recent PR was highly anticipated by the team.

“He’s very dedicated. This was definitely coming, this huge PR, and I’d seen it in practice,” Lieber said. “He was just like working and working and finally got to where he should be, and he’s going to keep doing great things.”

Berger says his favorite part of throwing over other events in track and field is how it is based on technical skills. Lieber said that Berger’s support has helped him and others develop their own technique on the team.

“He’s a great guy, and he also tries to help out a lot,” Lieber said. “He’ll give me feedback and other people feedback because he really knows the technique, and so he’s just trying to make the team great.”

Moving forward, Berger said he hoped to accomplish more feats during his time on the Occidental team.

Berger was released from the team after this interview.

Contact Mary Jones at


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