Record setting girls relay teams honored

Post Independent Writer

Track quartet named GSHS athletes of the week

By Phil Sandoval

Post Independent Staff

Together, Glenwood Springs’ girls sprint relay team is easy to appreciate, but hard to watch.

Fans and rivals alike have gotten accustomed to witnessing four blurs of Red and White when Leah Hinkey, Andrea Vincent, Amber Sutherland and Nicole Wagner hit the track.

This weekend the Demon runners hit the track and hit the jackpot.

At the regional meet in Grand Junction, the Glenwood quartet zipped to a pair of regional titles and set two new school records.

That effort earned them this week’s Glenwood Springs High School athlete of the week honors. The award iss voted on by the high school’s coaches and staff.

In the 4×100 relay, Hinkey, Vincent, Sutherland and Wagner sped to a time of 50.60 seconds, bettering the school’s year-old record by .17 seconds.

Later, the Demon same foursome, running in the 4×200 relay, earned their second regional title without breaking a sweat.

Clocking in at 1 minute, 46.50 seconds, the quartet bested runner-up Palisade’s time by more than three seconds – and set another school record as well.

This time, the record they broke was Glenwood’s 1:46.99, 1999 state championship mark.

Those efforts advanced the four Demons to the 4A state prelims in both events.

“I didn’t think I was running that hard,” said Wagner, who runs the anchor leg for both events. “Personally, I felt that I was gliding on the track and we really wanted to get the school record.”

Teamwork, the four runners said, is a big factor to their success.

“We all get along and we trust each other – that helps,” said Sutherland.

“We’re close as a team and we support each other,” Hinkey added.

Prior to the regional meet, Hinkey, a sophomore, helped the four girls bond by making a motivational CD and giving copies to each of her teammates.

Glenwood head coach Blake Risner said it’s the combination of both speed and teamwork that’s turned the four runners into a state championship contender.

“We’re fortunate to have four young ladies like Leah, Andrea, Amber and Nicole with a lot of speed,” he said. “There’s no getting around that.”

The coach noted two other ingredients which led to the runners’ success is “they have worked together and we haven’t changed the lineup of the relay teams and they have a desire to excel.”

The next goal for the four runners is to bring home a state title.

“We’re pretty ready for the state meet,” Wagner said. “And we want to smoke all those teams.””We’re pretty ready for the state meet,” Wagner said. “And we want to smoke all those teams.”

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