Young Grizzlies start track season in Greybull

Rocky track preview 2012

A young Rocky Mountain Grizzly and Lady Grizzly track squad is working out in preparation for the start of the 2012 season, which begins this Saturday with the Bill Gerrard Invitational in Greybull.

Rocky Mountain assistant middle school track and field coach Josh Sponsel works with eighth-grader Cordell McFarlane during practice Tuesday afternoon in Cowley.

Head coach Dave Beemer said the team is in a rebuilding mode this season, having lost almost all top point-getters either to graduation or injury. There are 22 athletes out for track and field, Beemer said: 13 boys and nine girls, and he said the team is “pretty young.”

Boys out for the team include seniors Chase Aagard in the throws, Austin Brost in the sprints (100, 200 and 400), Derik Romero in the sprints and Jackson Stephens in the sprints (200 and 400); juniors Bryce Ward in the hurdles, high jump and 400 and Brady Winland in the 800; sophomores Jake Loyning in the middle distances (400 and 800), Joey Carroll in the distance races and Joey Jewell in the long jump, triple jumps and sprints; and freshmen Casey Banks in distance races, Caleb Horrocks in the sprints and long jump, Cannon Simmons in the sprints, long jump and triple jump and Kirby Winland in the hurdles, high jump and triple jump.

“There’s some potential,” Beemer said. “I think they’ll do pretty well.”

The girls squad lost Leslie Blackburn, Eliza Higgins and Lauren Peterson to graduation and Kallee Wilson to a back injury, so the team will almost be starting from scratch, Beemer said.

The team does have experience returning in senior Ashley Bridges (throws), junior Brianna Hocker (triple jump and long jump) and sophomores Haley Stauffer (long jump, triple jump and spints), Haley Strom (100 hurdles and sprints) and Sydney Tyacke (sprints and long jump). Also out is sophomore Elizabeth Barnes, working in the long and triple jump.

Freshmen include Mikaela Hocker in the hurdles and throws, Jennifer Parker in the hurdles, sprints and shot put and Alana Senn in the throws.

Beemer coaches the sprinters, hurdlers and jumpers, John Bernhisel the distance runners and Ryan Boettcher the throwers and hurdlers.

Action in Greybull Saturday starts at 9:45 a.m. with field events, running events at 11.

By David Peck