Soroco, Hayden track teams finish well in Craig |

Soroco, Hayden track teams finish well in Craig

Luke Graham

Soroco High School student Sarajane Rossi competes in the girls 800-meter relay during the Clint Wells Invitational track meet Friday in Craig.

Soroco High School track and field coach David Bruner arrived at the Clint Wells Invitational track meet Friday nervous as could be.

The Rams coach had been balancing his relay teams all year because of injuries and multiple sport athletes.

Add in that his athletes were pretty broken down after a tough week of practice and that conditions in Craig saw gusts of 35 mph, and Bruner wasn’t sure what to expect.

When everything had settled and the bus was getting packed up, Bruner walked away with a big smile on his face.

Soroco placed six of its relay teams in the top three, including wins from the girls 800-meter relay team of Lauryn Bruggink, Traci Schlegel, Ceanna Rossi and Sarajane Rossi. The boys 1,600-meter relay team of David Strait, Cody Miles, Ryan Tibbetts and Alex Estes ran its best time to finish first. Matt Watwood also finished first in the shot put.

“They’re all broke down,” Bruner said. “We had some ups and downs (Friday), but we had more ups, so that’s good. I feel a lot better than I did when I got here. I feel good about what they’re doing. I’m confident they’ll keep getting better.”

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Maybe the most impressive finish of the day came from that 1,600-meter relay team. Bruner’s had to balance the lineup for it all year. On Friday, he might have just found the right combination.

Although all four runners could barely stand after winning by more than five seconds, all four came away feeling good about the possibilities with just two weeks left until regionals.

“We need to work every inch we can get,” Tibbetts said. “No slacking. We’ve been shuffling people in and out. We feel right now this is the team. We feel like we can keep eating at our times. If we each take a second or two off our individual times, we’ll be right there.”

Other top finishers for Soroco included the boys 800-meter relay team (second), boys 3,200-meter relay team (second), girls 800-sprint medley team (third) and girls 1,600-meter relay team (second).

Hayden proves productive

Even with the wind and weather not ideal for competition, the Hayden High School track and field team made big strides Friday in Craig.

Led by Jake Walker’s state pre-qualifying time and win in the 100-meter dash, the Tigers were impressive.

The Tigers also got wins from Holli Salazar in the girls shot put and Chris Zirkle in the boys 3,200-meter run.

The Hayden girls 3,200-meter relay team of Calla Manzanares, Aspen Zabel, Angela St. Clair and Delanie Vedepo finished first as did the boys 400-meter relay team of Billy Zehner, Braylin Wertenberger, Coy Letlow and Walker. The 400-meter relay team missed a state pre-qualifying time by tenths of a second.

“It’s pretty tricky,” Zirkle said about the weather. “It’s definitely harder going into the wind. You lose more than you gain. I just wanted to get first. I figured the wind would slow me down, but I was happy.”

Hayden also got solid individual results from the Delanie Vedepo (third in the girls 1,600-meter run), Coy Letlow (third in the 100-meter dash), Calla Manzanares (third in the girls 100-meter dash), Billy Zehner (second in the boys 110-meter hurdles), Walker (fourth in the boys long jump) and Aubree Haskins (fourth in the shot put).

Now, Hayden turns to the last two weeks of the season – two weeks coach Barbara Manzanares called critical to the team’s success.

“We’re going to see what we can do,” she said. “We’re getting them up to speed. We’re getting them peaking at the right time.”

Hayden results

Girls High Jump

8. Maddison Kopsa

Girls 400-meter relay

3. Hayden

Girls 1,600-meter run

3. Delanie Vedepo

Boys 100-meter dash

1. Jake Walker

3. Coy Letlow

Girls 100-meter dash

3. Calla Manzanares

Boys 110-meter hurdles

2. Billy Zehner

6. Hayden Blake

Girls 100-meter hurdle

5. Brette Frentress

Girls 3,200-meter relay

1. Hayden

800 sprint medley

4. Hayden

Boys 400-meter relay

1. Hayden

Boys Shot put

5. Logan Foster

Boys 300-meter hurdles

8. Hayden Blake

Girls 200-meter dash

5. Calla Manzanares

Boys 200-meter dash

6. Coy Letlow

Boys long jump

4. Jake Walker

8. Billy Zehner

Girls long jump

6. Maddison Kopsa

8. Taylor Petersen

Girls 400-meter dash

8. Aspen Zabel

Girls triple jump

6. Maddison Kopsa

Girls shot put

1. Holli Salazar

4. Aubree Haskins

7. Amanda Bugg

Girls discus

5. Brittany Turner

Boys 3,200-meter run

1. Chris Zirkle

Boys 1,600-meter relay

6. Hayden

Boys high jump

1. Murphy Smartt

Boys long jump

4. Jake Walker

8. Billy Zehner

Soroco results

Boys 1,600-meter run

8. Jaden Baker

Boys 800-meter relay

2. Soroco

Girls 800-meter relay

1. Soroco

Boys 3,200-meter relay

2. Soroco

800 sprint medley

3. Soroco

Girls 400-meter dash

4. Lindsay Miles

6. Carmen Mathews

Boys shot put

1. Matt Watwood

Boys 800-meter run

6. Jaden Baker

Boys long jump

7. Alex Estes

Girls 1,600-meter relay

2. Soroco

Boys 3,200-meter run

5. Michael Rossi

Boys 1,600-meter relay

1. Soroco

Boys long jump

7. Alex Estes

Boys triple jump

7. Cody Miles

8. Alex Estes

Boys discus

3. Matt Watwood

4. Dylan Delamater

8. Gage Achtner

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