By Arnie Leshin
They will be off and running, jumping and throwing at Saturday morning‘s District 1-3A track and field championships, the final qualifying time for next Saturday’sstate championships.
In the field is host West Las Vegas, Roberson, St. Michael’s, and Santa Fe Prep, with 9 o’clock scheduled for the start.
St. Michael’s head coach Joey Fernandez has a 52-count girls and boys roster and his squad figures to do as well as it has done so far this season, the one after last year’s competition was cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Griffins, under head coach Douglas Turco, will also bring a cast of quality athletes, while West Las Vegas has a young girls team with depth, and a smaller boys team with two freshmen and one 8th-grader. Robertson never submitted rosters, which makes it difficult to write on it.
As for St. Michael’s, it’s loaded with athletes in the sprints, middle distance, long distance, and the field events.
Red hot has been sophomore Jackie Gorman, who in one meet won the 100 and 300 hurdles, the high jump and triple jump. Right up there is freshman Rebekah Bagwell, and she’s been solid in the 100 and 400. Senior Olivia Farrar from the state-champion girls soccer team is versatile and runs the 200, 400 and the long jump.
Can’t forget 8th-grader Raylee Hunt, who had a super cross country season in which she won three times over the quality field and finished second at state in the second-fastest time. At districts she could be running the 400 and 1,6000, doing the long jump and anchoring the sprint medley relays team.
Her sophomore sister, Logan, has made her return to running and has improved her times in the 800 and 1,600. In the discus will be junior Claire Patten, also a member of the soccer team. freshman Ceciliana Ruiz in the javelin, and freshman Jada Lujan of the soccer team in the high jump, long jump and 300 hurdles.
The Horsemen are led by junior Isaiah Salazar. He has picked up wins in the 110 and 300 hurdles and the triple jump. Then there’s senior Lucas Montoya trying for a double in the 400 and long jump, senior Dennis Ortiz in the 1,600, and freshman Mathias Duran throwing the shot put.
Young Jaden Perea, an 8th-grader, has been showing his heels in the 3,200 and crossing the line first. In the sprints, senior Robbi Chianese has been on top in the 100 meters, and right behind him as been fellow sophomore Daniel Kupcho, who has been winning the 200 and long jump.
Heaving the javelin has been the strength for junior Devin Flores, the same for freshman Mathias Duran in the shot put and junior Jordan Bornal in the discus.
St. Michael’s figures to do well in the 4 x 100, 4 x 200, 4 x 400, and the sprint medley relays As for the Lady Horsemen, they are best in the 4 x 200, 4 x 400 and the sprint medley.
Santa Fe Prep has an outstanding boys high jumper in versatile Finn Coles, who has already gone over at 6-04. Right behind him is senior Sebat Schriber and junior Harry Browning, with both also in the triple jump and long jump, and probably the same with Coles.
The Griffins have junior Elias Amarel in his best event, the triple jump and also the long jump. Senior Lewis Sisler’s best events are the 800 and 1,600, then there’s other top athletes in junior Halen Gurler-Hatch and sophomore Nathan Asher and freshman Lysandper Christo, who will go in the 300 hurdles and Asher in the 400, and Gurler-Hatch has been a winner in the triple jump and right up there in the long jump.
In the relays, Prep should do well in the boys 4 x 100, 4 x 200, 4 x 400, and the sprint medley, the girls in the 4 x 100, 4 c 200, 4 x 400, 4 x 800, and the sprint medley.
Girls junior Isabel Voinescu, who excels in the 100, 200 and the javelin, is in the state tennis finals that will also be played Saturday, so she might not be able to also compete in the track and field although she has already qualified for state.
But freshman Emily Kurth, talented daughter of Griffins’ athletic director Todd Kurth, will surely be there, and she comes off victories in the triple jump, and also does 300 hurdles, and up-coming in the high jump and long jump.
“It’s her first time at this,” said Todd Kurth, “and she loves it, says it’s fun and and that she enjoys all these events.”
Prep freshman Helen Desmond is up-and-coming in the high jump and the 1,600, and junior Leanna Motelet has done well throwing the javelin. Also in the javelin field will be sophomore Lauren McHouse.
Host West Las Vegas has a girls team in numbers, but young with seven freshmen and a pair of 8th-graders. The top Dons so far have been freshmen Gabrielle Ortega and Azucena Gonzales-Miller, and senior Gabriella Rivera.
Under head coach James Esquibel, the WLV boys have two freshmen and one 8th-grader, with senior Joseph Rivera one oftheir leading athletes along with senior Eric Gallegos and freshman John Padilla.