MANLIUS — Things are really looking up for the Bureau Valley girls track and field team this spring.
After dropping down to only 12 girls last year, the Storm has doubled their numbers and stand 24 strong this spring.
“That will enable us to fill all the events. That will be very important to us now that we now have a much bigger conference this season,” BV coach Dale Donner said. “The Three Rivers should be one of the best track conferences in the state.”
The Storm return three state qualifiers in the junior class with Sydney Lebahn (throws), Lindsey Hoffert (jumps, sprints) and Regan Weidner (3200). Hoffert placed third in 1A long jump at state a year ago and was the state runner-up as a freshman. Weidner finished 13 in the 3200 meters, but did not place. She placed third in 2011.
Other returning letter winners include seniors Lauren Peterson (hurdles), Kelly Sirens (hurdles) and Katelin Johnson (mid distance), juniors Haley DeVoss (sprints) and Riley Francis (distance) and sophomore Abby Howes (hurdles).
The Storm have also added some newcomers in foreign exchange students Helena Arnadottir (jumps, mid distance) of Iceland and Roni Riggen (distance) of Mexico, both who had strong cross country seasons.
Senior Lexi Kruse will help out in sprints and jumps with juniors Khloe Koser in sprints and the pole vault and Corrinne Wigenknecht running distance.
There are promising freshmen with Lexie Jacobs (throws), Tianna Kennedy (jumps, sprints), Laina Kruse (jumps, mid distance), Marissa Mungia (sprints, jumps), Taylin Ritter (PV, throws, mid distance), Sam Roberts (sprints), Katie Smith (sprints), Sydney Sweenie (distance), Sabrina Webb (HJ, sprints) and Heather Williams (distance).
“We have a lot of confidence in our freshmen class along with all our returners and have set our goal for a top three finish in conference,” Donner said. “We also feel we can qualify a couple relays for state, along with a handful of individuals. We feel we have a lot of talent and depth to compete with most teams in the area.”
The Bureau Valley boys return a great amount of talent from last year, though will have to make up for the loss of three-time state medalist and BCR Track Athlete of the Year Logan Hoffert.
Leading that charge is seniors Tucker Schoff, Ryan Taylor, and Daniel Trone, who return from the 4x400 relay that medaled at state last year. Schoff returns to the hurdles running this year with his freshman brother Hunter Schoff.
Seniors Kane Eastwood, Colton Peterson and Taylor move down to some sprint events as well as still focus on the some of the middle distance events. Senior Andrew Smith and junior Charlie Lotspeich continue to work on distance events joined by freshmen Hunter Lewis and Cole Kaiser and sophomore Julian Osorio.
Sophomores Will Konneck and Trey Dale and seniors Jeremiah Blackert and Joe Fisher provide stability in the sprints and sprint relays as well. Freshmen sprinters include Michael Eastwood, Alex Cady, Alex Elmore, and Nick Glubczynski.
The Storm’s field events will be a combination of youth and experience. Jeremiah Blackert will be a jack of all trades in the jump events. Dale returns in the triple jump while the freshmen Hunter Schoff looks to make an immediate impact in the high jump. Taylor and Kody Church work the pole vault.
Storm coach Jeff Ohlson said the Storm has a lot of talent in throws. Seniors Justin Buckman, Andrew Jacobs and Austin Sietter along with juniors Chase Pierce and Tyler Gonigam return to compete. They have all put in a lot of work to make them even better, Ohlson said. Junior Kegan Mooney and Freshmen Lee Eshelmen join the mix.
• The Storm will host the BV Coed Triangular at the Storm track to kick off the outdoor season on Monday.
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