|2010 season underway for Plainsmen tracksters|
By Jan Rahn
Nearly even on both sides of the roster, 21 boys and 22 girls, the Plainsmen track teams return for the 2010 season with a good number of letter winners.
Among the returning athletes are six state qualifiers from the 2009 season, three of whom were last year’s district champions in their events.
Last season’s girls squad was the 2009 District Champion as well as SPVA Champ.
Head Coach Shayne Hite has confidence that 16 incoming freshmen will make a difference by performing at a level he thinks they are capable of, contributing to Perkins County’s reputation for athleticism.
Upper classmen Hite expects to lead the way include seniors Kye Kurkowski in sprints and triple jump and Josh Sexson in hurdles and long jump, along with juniors Michael York in hurdles and triple jump and Jeremy Hagan in distance.
Kurkowski and York competed in triple jump at state track last season. Sexson hurdled at state.
Senior Markus Wehrmann in distance, juniors Michael Zillner and Riley Kosmicki in mid-distance and pole vault, along with weights and sprints from Austin Gaston complete the upperclassmen competitors.
Three of six sophomores on the team are 2009 letterwinners—Chad Fosbinder (weights), Seth Burge (mid-distance) and Matthew Cullen (sprints, long jump). Adding to the team are Justin Hatcher (weights, mid-distance), Brody Prante (mid-distance) and Derek Brueggeman (weights).
Freshmen with potential for scoring include Elliot Carlson (jumps, sprints), Vinny Ross and Tye Summers (weights), Patrick Teppert (hurdles), Quinton Hite (sprints), and Brendon Barry and Rassel Hausman (mid-distance/distance).
“If they develop like I think they can, the boys team should do fine,” said Hite.
Four senior letterwinners, three junior letterwinners and five sophomore letterwinners top the team roster on the girls side. Letterwinner Calla Mailand, a junior, will help manage the squad.
Only two seniors left last year’s SPVA and District Champion team.
Nine freshmen join the squad to help create depth.
“We need to develop more depth in some events and get the freshmen performing at a level that I think they are capable of,” said Coach Hite.
Senior letterwinners include Mackenzie Hite (mid-distance, long jump, triple jump), Elisa Carlson (distance, pole vault) who was last year’s pole vault state qualifier, Brooke Poppe (hurdles) and Jenni Sis (sprints), last year’s state qualifier in two sprints.
Junior letterwinners include Krystal Gaar in mid-distance and long jump, and weights contenders Jessica Day and Debbie Dahlkoetter.
Last season’s sophomore letter winners include state qualifier Kristin Beck in distance, Ashley Kemling (mid-distance), Tanya Metcalf (hurdles, high jump), Emma Friedel and Tori Osler (weights/sprints).
Freshmen throwers include Shania Metcalf, Rachel Patrick, Lacey Jensen, Ashley Fogle, Katie Rowley (sprints), and Matisyn Humphrey (hurdles). Pole vaulters are Jessi Hoffert (mid-distance) and Jessie Woodmancy (hurdles). Kimberly Cook will perform sprints and jumps.
With assistance from Shawn Cole, Anita Burge and Dean Friedel, Coach Hite and his Plainsmen tracksters travel to Ogallala today (Thursday, April 1) for the first meet of the season.
The home invitational is set for Saturday, April 10, at Lee Todd Track at Perkins County High School beginning at 8 a.m.