Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Girls' track capsules

By Kevin Carmody Updated: March 5, 2014 at 9:49 pm

5A

Doherty

Coach: Robert Duensing

Key players: Haleigh Washington, sr. (jumps); Kylie Hay (throws), Sadie Baker (distance)

Season outlook: The Spartans are young and hope to see further improvement in the distance events and throws. Last spring at the 5A state meet, Washington was Doherty's lone finalist, placing fifth in the high jump.

 

Fountain-Fort Carson

Coach: Ben Montoya

Key players: Chasidy Horton, jr. (jumps, relays); Rajon O'Quinn (jumps, relays); Octavia McFadden (relays); Shawvone Davis (relays), Justice Coker (relays), Ayanna Bernard (relays).

Season outlook: Horton and O'Quinn lead six letter-winners who also gained experience at the 5A state meet. Horton finished second in the long jump, while O'Quinn was runner-up in the high jump, just one inch from the title. The Trojans are deep in the sprints and relays and are trying to develop athletes in the mid- and long-distance disciplines.

 

Liberty

Coach: Dick Geddes

Key players: Haley Zrnchik, so.; Paige Ziegler, sr. (hurdles); Chloe Ross, sr. (distance); 

Season outlook: Nealy 100 athletes combined turned out for the boys' and girls' track teams. Geddes likes what he's seen in the team's ability so far. He's hoping some of the athletes with no track experience but obvious talent develop as the season progresses.

 

Pine Creek

Coach: Max Oliver

Key players: Ally Watt, jr. (sprints); Heide Baron, so. (sprints); Madelyn Baron, sr. (sprints); Faith Vines, jr. (sprints); Rachel Cardozo, sr. (sprints); Mackenzie Howie, jr. (sprints); Amanda Skarban, sr. (throws); Kaleigh Kroeker, jr. (distance); Gabrielle Sered, sr. (distance); Katherine Sered, sr. (distance); Devon Kroeker, fr. (distance); Calyssa Trautner, so. (distance); Amelia Harvey, jr. (jumps, sprints).

Season outlook: The Eagles thrive in sprints, relays and distance, and this year should be no different with a strong returning cast. Watt was a two-time state champ as a freshman who was runner-up in the 200 and 400 at state last spring. Pine Creek, which finished fifth in the 5A team standings, got even stronger in the sprinting events with the addition of Doherty transfer Mackenzie Howie.

 

Rampart

Coach: Jim West

Key players: Amanda Cushen, jr. (throws); Ashlyn Hare, jr. (jumps, hurdles); Thea Ramsey, jr. (distance); Tianna Terrell, so. (hurdles); August Raskie, jr. (throws); Emily Dingman, sr. (distance).

Season outlook: The Rams had state qualifiers in Cushen, Hare and Terrell, and that experience should bolster a mostly young team. At the 5A state meet, Hare placed fifth in the high jump, and Cushen finished eighth in the shot put.

 

4A

Air Academy

Coach: Blue Anderson

Key players: Katie Rainsberger, so. (distance); Jordyn Grulkowski, sr. (pole vault); Olivia Evans, sr. (distance); Kayla Wiitala, so. (distance); Kat Pennington, sr. (distance); Tori Lopez, sr. (distance); Maddie Draper, jr. (sprints); McKenna Merrill, so. (sprints); Jeanette Jansen, sr. (jumps).

Season outlook: Last season's Kadets finished sixth in the team race, and nine letter-winners return from that team. Rainsberger finished second in the 800 and 1,600, and Grulkowski placed third in the pole vault and the 3,200 relay team finished third.

 

Cheyenne Mountain

Coach: Stan Lambros

Key players: Elizabeth Wayne, jr. (jumps); Greta Sloan, sr. (distance); Emma Thomas, jr. (throws).

Season outlook: An infusion of youth joins a solid crew of state-experienced athletes that has the Indians thinking big in 2014. Sloan placed seventh at state in the 800, and Wayne was eighth in the high jump. Thomas is the school's record holder in the discus.

 

Coronado

Coach: Doug Hugill

Key players: Tatiana Clanton, sr. (jumps); Sair Gavsy, so. (jumps); Gabby Roth, jr. (distance); Lauren Akers, sr. (distance); Lauren Murray (distance); Liz Akers (hurdles); Olivia Babeu (distance); Kristen Hernandez (distance).

Season outlook: The Cougars are blessed with depth and talent at long distance and jumps. Roth placed in the 3,200 meters and was an all-state selection in cross country. Clanton finished sixth in the long jump and also qualified in the triple jump. In all, eight athletes return from last season's team.

 

Discovery Canyon

Coach: Christina Miner

Key players: Ashlyn Nolan, so. (sprints); Beth DeLaurell, so. (distance); Arianna Ross, jr. (distance); Courtney McCann, jr. (relays); Rylee McCone, jr. (relays).

Season outlook: With a surge in numbers, the senior-less Thunder are hoping that translates into a top-10 finish after placing 13th at the 4A state meet in 2013. Nolan and DeLaurell both broke through as freshmen. Nolan placed third in the 100 hurdles finals, fifth in the 300 hurdles and 15th in the long jump, and DeLaurell finished ninth in the 3,200.

 

Harrison

Coach: Al Melo

Key players: Alyssa Evans, sr. (sprints); De'Aijah Paulk, sr. (jumps); Ashley Register, jr. (sprints); Jalynn Guy, sr. (sprints).

Season outlook: Harrison was exceptional in sprint relay events last season at state, finishing fourth in the 400 and 800, then finishing a close second to Lewis-Palmer in the 800 sprint. Guy nearly qualified for the state finals in the 100.

 

Lewis-Palmer

Coach: Nancy Pellow

Key players: Nicole Montgomery, jr. (sprints, distance); Megan McGrath, jr. (pole vault).

Season outlook: A young Rangers team will take the lead from Montgomery, the defending 4A state champion in the 400 (meet record) and runner-up in the 200. McGrath will look to return to state in the pole vault. Pellow starts her first year at Lewis-Palmer after previously coaching the Rampart volleyball team.

 

Mesa Ridge

Coach: Carl Burgess

Key players: Sara Viscovi, sr. (hurdles, sprints); Paxton Richardson, jr. (sprints); Shamara Byrd, sr. (jumps); Raina Lopez, sr. (distance); Megan Morgan, jr. (hurdles, sprints).

Season outlook: A solid nucleus of returners and a large turnout of newcomers have Burgess, entering his 14th season, excited for this year, and beyond. Byrd placed eighth in the triple jump at the 4A state meet and also qualified for the high jump. Also, the 400 and 800 relays qualified for the finals.

 

Mitchell

Coach: Archie Malloy

Key players: Asha Mason, sr. (hurdles); Natalie Tiona, so. (distance); Catherine Tiona, sr. (pole vault); Alissa Mastronardi, jr. (distance); Alexis Green, sr. (throws); Angie Macklin, sr. (sprints, relays); Rochelle Thompson, sr. (sprints, relays); Haley Wiedeman, so. (jumps); Hannah Longstreth, sr. (hurdles); Josefine Rodriguez, jr. (jumps, relays).

Season outlook: Plenty of returning letter-winners return for the Marauders, highlighted by Mason, the lone state qualifier who barely missed reaching the finals of the 100 hurdles at the 4A state meet last May. Natalie Tiona (800 meters) and older sister Catherine (pole vault) both have potential to make state in respective events, as well as together as part of the 800 sprint relay team.

 

Palmer Ridge

Coach: Joshua Trahan

Key players: Libby Acker, sr. (pole vault); Lauren Cherry, sr. (jumps); Ali Deitsch, sr. (distance); Daelynn DeMello, sr. (sprints); Mackenzie Gouner, jr. (sprints); Claire Wilson, jr. (distance); Dana Kirk, jr. (hurdles); Megan Harvey, so. (sprints).

Season outlook: The Bears return eight athletes with state experience, and after a 12th-place team finish last season, they are poised to crack the top 10. If Palmer Ridge can continue to improve in the throwing events, the team could contend for a 4A state title.

 

Sand Creek

Coach: Bobby Tillman

Key players: Mariah Walker, sr. (throws); Rebecca Harris, sr. (jumps, hurdles); Briana Daniels, sr. (sprints); Bridgett Ganntt, jr. (sprints); Keyonne Gouty, jr. (sprints).

Season outlook: Graduation took a big chunk out of a Scorpions team that finished second to Niwot in the final standings, but enough athletes return to make another run. Walker is the defending 4A state champ in the shot put and placed fifth in the discus, while Harris won the state title in the long jump and finished runner-up in the 300 hurdles. Daniels, Ganntt and Gouty all ran on state-finalist sprint relays.

 

Vista Ridge

Coach: Jay Peltier

Key players: Aly Lopez, jr. (jumps); Ashley Polk, fr. (distance).

Season outlook: The program hasn't reached the heights of the boys' squad, but it could be a matter of time with plenty of new talent coming on board. Lopez placed 13th in the high jump at the 2013 4A state meet.

 

Widefield

Coach: Fred Marjerrison

Key players: Jordan Edmonds, jr. (sprints)

Season outlook: Edmonds qualified for the 100 and 200 finals at last season's 4A state meet, placing eighth and seventh, respectively.

 

Woodland Park

Coach: Roy Payton

Key players: Lexi Harrison, jr. (distance); Anne Fisher, sr. (distance).

Season outlook: The Panthers are in a rebuilding phase, with 13th-year coach Payton commenting on this year's team as "the most inexperienced girls team in several years."

 

3A

Colorado Springs Christian School

Coach: Mike Caton

Key players: Hannah Struttman, sr. (distance), Abby Topper, sr. (distance); Abby Skrastins, so. (jumps); Hannah Swenson, so., (sprints); Aubrey Cox, sr. (hurdles).

Season outlook: The Lions have several returning state qualifiers that should go far once again in 2014. Swenson took eighth in the 100 finals at the 3A state meet, and Skrastins placed eighth in the triple jump. Topper struggled with a broken foot and low iron levels but still had one of the state's top times in the 1,600 meters. Cox, a state finalist in the hurdles as a sophomore, returns after missing all of 2013 due to injury.

 

Ellicott

Coach: Jim Van Hoesen

Key players: Angelina Garduno, sr. (sprints, jumps); Sami Million, sr. (distance).

Season outlook: The ThunderHawks' lone state qualifier, Ashlee Lenz, graduated, but seniors and co-captains Garduno and Million hope to represent this May at the 3A state meet.

 

Manitou Springs

Coach: Phil Rich

Key players: Taylor Finn, so. (hurdles, relays); Maddie Canarro, sr. (relays); Brooke Garretson, so.; Caroline Rule, so. (relays, sprints); Angala Jenson, so. (relays, throws); Hali Krauise, jr. (relays, sprints); Kristi Longfield, sr. (relays, pole vault).

Season outlook: The Mustangs are young, but proven, with seven returning state qualifiers. Finn took third in the 100 hurdles and sixth in the 300 hurdles, while the 800 sprint relay placed fourth.

 

St. Mary's

Coach: Debbie Hellman

Key players: Elena Slavoski, sr. (distance).

Season outlook: Slavoski was a three-event finalist for the Pirates at last spring's 3A state meet, highlighted by a fourth-place showing in the 3,200 meters. She and five other returning letter-winners will be called to lead a program that welcomes seven newcomers.

 

2A

Calhan

Coach: Luke Billington

Key players: Amber Dugger, jr.; (jumps); Matt Haltki, so. (distance); Riley Cookson, sr. (throws).

Season outlook: Nine incoming freshmen with success at middle school join a talented cast for the 2014 season. The team will compete for fallen former teammates Jae Ellis and Tiffany O'Neal, who died within hours of each other last September in automobile accidents. Also, the team will honor Ellis, who didn't miss a single workout last summer, with the "Heart of a Champion" T-shirt that will be awarded to one athlete per meet.

 

Peyton

Coach: Gary Vandermark

Key players: Vaden Holmes, sr. (shot put, discus); Stacey Tope, sr. (throws); Aleah Heredia, sr. (sprints, middle distance); Karlin Rufenacht, jr. (high jump); Mikenna Coover, so. (sprints, middle distance); Cassie Wright, so. (sprints, discus)

Season outlook: The Panthers return a number of state qualifiers, including Holmes, Heredia, Rufenacht, Coover and Wright. In addition to that, they have a good-sized team with the number of athletes that turned out, Vandermark said. Throws, middle distance and sprints will be the strengths of the team, while distance and horizontal jumps will be a drawback, unless the development of athletes yields to depth in team scoring.

 

The Vanguard School

Coach: Steve Read

Key players: Jordyn Arcuri, sr. (hurdles); Rachel Hough, jr. (sprints, distance); Jenneah Lenzini, jr. (distance); Jenny Smith, so. (distance, relays).

Season outlook: The Coursers, who finished 10th in the team standings, have experience at all levels as they compete at 2A for the last time before moving up to 3A next season.

Arcuri is a state veteran in both hurdle events, while Hough finished third in the 400 and Lenzini was a two-event qualifier in the long-distance events.

 

No reports

5A: Palmer

4A: Falcon, Sierra

3A: Florence, Fountain Valley, James Irwin, TCA

2A: Colorado Springs School, Miami-Yoder

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