The first time Ryan Andrews picked up the shot and spun around to throw it, he said he felt awkward. It was just him and a ball inside the ring.
He went to Newport Harbor High to play football. The throwing, he thought that was what quarterbacks do.
All Andrews wanted to do was block as a fullback and tackle as a linebacker.
Then he met Tony Ciarelli. The football program's longtime defensive coordinator introduced Andrews to throwing in track and field. Three years later, carrying a 12-pound ball feels as normal as carrying books on campus for Andrews.
The senior is now one of the state's top throwers in the shot put. Andrews thanks Ciarelli for turning him into one of the best.
Last week at the 44th annual Arcadia Invitational, Andrews showed how far he could launch the ball. He recorded a personal-best mark of 59 feet, eight inches, good for third place at the prestigious event at Arcadia High.