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Hayden track team looks to future

Bryanna McFadden launches into the air during track practice last Thursday afternoon at Moffat County High School. The Hayden boys track team finished 14th and the girls finished sixth at the Demon Invitational in Glenwood Springs on Saturday.
John F. Russell

— With an intense schedule ahead, Hayden track and field coach Kevin Kleckler came away from Saturday’s track meet in Glenwood Springs excited for the next two weeks.

With four meets in the next two weeks, Kleckler said Saturday’s meet set the foundation for a successful run toward the regional and state meets.

With more than 20 teams in attendance, the Hayden boys finished 14th and the girls came away with an impressive sixth place finish.



“First off, the weather was tremendous,” Kleckler said. “It was nice to be in the Demon Invitational, and it’s got to be the best weather I’ve been in since I’ve coached down there. (Saturday) we had a lot of kids set a lot of personal records. We were very pleased with our performance.”

On the girls side, Maddison Kopsa highlighted the day by winning the triple jump. Other placers included Laura Zirkle (third in the 3,200 meter dash), Caitlyn Mahanna (eighth in the 100-meter hurdles, Holli Salazar (third in the shot put) and Emily Whiteman (fourth in the shot put). The girls also placed sixth in the 4×200-meter relay, seventh in the 800-meter sprint medley, fifth in the 4×800-meter relay and third in the 4×100-meter relay.



“Our girls are downright tough for our division,” Kleckler said. “What’s more impressive is how young they are.”

On the boys side, Jake Walker finished sixth in the 100-meter dash, and Murphy Smartt finished eighth in the high jump.

The Hayden boys also placed second in the 4×100 meter relay and fifth in the 4×200 meter relay.

With more than half of the season over, Kleckler said he’s been pleased with the development and continuing improvement he’s seen from the team. With a team as young and talented as the Tigers, he said, it makes his job easy.

“The kids are performing well,” Kleckler said, adding this week he’d focus on relays. “Techniques continue to improve as the weeks go by and kids continue to improve. That’s the ultimate goal as a coach is you want to see them improve.”


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