Davonte Jett-Reynolds, a 2017 graduate of Page High School has been chosen as a 2018 National Junior College Athletic Association- Division I Track and Field All American.
Jett-Reynolds ran the 5000-meter with the Central Arizona College track and field team where he placed fifth with a time of 15:15.77 in the national collegiate competition held in El Dorado, Kansas two weeks ago. There was a total 34 colleges competing.
“I am honored and thankful that I had a good coach to push me all season and thankful I had a good ground base from Page High School with MacArthur Lane. I am still honored to be representing the Running Devils.” he said about his recent victory.
“Honestly, I was really surprised because I wasn’t in the fast heat,” said Jett-Reynolds. “I was in the slow heat based on the time I ran during the season. I didn’t expect to make All American or make the podium. I was standing in the bleachers when a couple of my friends told me I made All-American. I was like, ‘What the heck?’ I ran down [to the podium]. It was a really big shock to me.”
Jett-Reynolds moved to Arizona from Florida to attend the Christian Academy High School in Phoenix. He’d been having a tough time adjusting when he met Allen Fowler during their sophomore year. Fowler introduced him to long distance running and Jett-Reynolds soon discovered running helped find some peace of mind and balance in his life.
During their junior year Fowler had moved back to Page and invited Jett-Reynolds to try out for the team at Page High School. After asking his family in Florida and meeting with the Fowler family, Jett-Reynolds relocated to Page.
“There is a whole back story of how I got here,” he said. “I asked if I could move up here not knowing anybody except Allen. We actually lived in Coppermine. People used to ask me where I lived and I would say, ‘On the rez.’ They didn’t believe me and I would say, ‘Yeah for real bro. I live on the rez. I’m out here!”
He vividly remembers the times he got to experience the cultural activities of everyday life on the reservation, such as running a distance to get to the bus in the morning or butchering sheep for a large gathering.
Once he settled in with the Fowlers, Jett-Reynolds joined the Page Running Devils his junior year. It was his first opportunity to hone his skills as a runner.
“I wouldn’t say [running] was completely new,” he said. “I just ran to run but I never took it seriously until my junior year. MacArthur Lane was my coach and he taught me a lot. [At Page High] I was part of the cross-country state title team; I also became the 3200-meter state champ. I fell off my senior year though.”
His story didn’t end there because he was able to foresee how different life would be without an education or goals. Jett-Reynolds still had plans to keep running and to finish strong.
“I had committed to Central Arizona College (CAC) on a scholarship in track and field/cross-country.”
And that’s where he found a new team and new goals. The CAC has held a tradition of track and field/cross-country excellence on the national level. When Jett-Reynolds signed to run with them, he acknowledges this was a chance to change his life for good.
“There is a lot more miles involved [in training] and the intensity and expectations are higher.,” he said. “Coach Paul Tiberius is cool and laid back but he expects a lot. He also runs with us so he is there. We run 85-90 miles a week.”
He had a successful, accomplished year. He made First Team- All Region, First All Conference, and finished runner up at the National Track and Field meet.
Jett-Reynolds has received several offers from different colleges to run for them including the University of Arizona. He will finish out another semester at CAC then he’s hoping to transfer over to one of three colleges. His educational and career goals include a teaching degree and a coaching position with aspirations to one day become an athletic director.
“My goal is to take some state titles and one day coach hopefully somewhere on the rez.”
For now, Jett-Reynolds will be spending the summer with the people who encourage and support his efforts, his journey and his decisions.
“I love Page. It’s a beautiful place and I really love the Native American culture. [The Fowlers] feel like [the All American] is pretty cool and are pretty proud.” Jett-Reynolds acknowledges the Servanti’s, Chuck and Melissa, have also been a fountain of support of his new life in Page.
“Melissa, she was beyond stoked. She was almost in tears when she got the call. She was very proud and she supports me a lot.”