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3A teams to build on past success

Jeff Caspersen
jcaspersen@postindependent.com
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

PEACH VALLEY, Colorado ” Returning every single state qualifier she had from last year’s team has Coal Ridge track and field coach Meggie Kirk in good spirits.

Seeing 45 or so kids turn out for track only lifts those spirits higher.

“We’re just really excited to have that many kids out,” Kirk said. “And we have that leadership from seniors and juniors. Being a new school, that was hard not to have. We’re finally getting there.”



The Titans have quite the foundation to build upon in Coal Ridge’s fourth year of existence.

Five relay teams and three individual state qualifiers (Blake Rivers, boys 100-meter dash; Bradey Gasaway, boys 300 hurdles; Chelyn McCain, girls 300 hurdles) are coming back, along with distance phenom DaLin Murphy, who didn’t compete in track last season but made state in the 3,200 two years ago.



“They’re all very good,” Kirk lauded. “We’re pretty excited.”

PARACHUTE, Colorado ” Sean Rice couldn’t have asked for much better of a rookie season as the head track and field coach at Grand Valley.

The Cardinals qualified big numbers to the 2A state meet, and then scored three top-five finishes once there.

And the one responsible for two of those high finishes, Brandi Krieg, is back for her sophomore season.

Krieg took fourth in the 3,200-meter run and fifth in the 1,600 at state last year and will be back to try her hand at the 3A level in 2009. So will a number of other Cardinal returning state qualifiers, such as hurdlers Colton Cowan, Jared Tonder and Erin Vanderpool.

Rice also has more athletes at his disposal than he had in his debut campaign. He credits last year’s success ” and the fun had by those who came out for track ” with drawing out bigger numbers.

“We had really good success last year with the program,” said the former collegiate thrower. “A lot of the kids, even if they didn’t have quite the success, had a good time with other programs.”

CARBONDALE, Colorado ” Even with a small turnout for track and field last year, Roaring Fork made some noise come May.

Jumper Tyler Thompson took home a gold medal from the 3A state meet in Pueblo, winning the long jump. He also took second in the triple jump to make for quite the haul.

Thrower Jon Araujo didn’t fare much worse, taking second in the discus and third in the shot put.

The Rams hope to replicate such successes in 2009 under head coach Hadley Hentschel.


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