The Riverside Rebels track and field squad gave their all on the track and field at the 2A West Regional Meet Friday and Saturday in Lander with junior James DesRosier and senior Sabrina Taylor qualifying for the upcoming meet this weekend.
Junior James DesRosier placed sixth in the 110-meter hurdle prelims with a time of 19.9 to qualify for the finals and the state meet. DesRosier placed fifth in the finals with a time of 20.74.
DesRosier also placed 10th in the 400-meter dash, finishing the oval in 1:00.15 and in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 48.54 seconds.
Sophomore Ryan Miller placed 12th in the 400-meter dash, finishing the lap in 1:01.35, and 14th in the triple jump by jumping 32-7. He placed 15th in the long jump with a jump of 15-1½.
In the girls division, Taylor qualified for state in the discus with a second-place throw of 87-2, and in the pole vault by clearing 6-0 to place sixth. She also placed 12th in the triple jump with a jump of 25-8.
Junior Hannah Coy placed 10th in the long jump with a jump of 12-11¼, and 12th in the 400-meter dash, coming in at 1:15.51. She also placed 11th in the triple jump with a jump of 25-11.
Sophomore Summer Riley placed 10th in the 100-meter hurdles, crossing the finish line in 21.88 seconds and in the triple jump with a jump of 26-4.
Sophomore Kayleigh Long placed 13th in the 3,200-meter run, finishing the event in 20:53.04.
Coach Jared Collingwood was hoping to get a few more athletes qualified for State, but overall he was pleased with the individual growth his team has made throughout the season.
“Some of our athletes not only increased in jumps, throws and cut time on runs but were open and willing to try new things and that was huge,” Collingwood said. “I was proud of how our kids worked hard through the elements at Lander. Some of our athletes that were only a couple places off from qualifying can look at those marks and try to focus on improving for next year on those.
“We had a number of first year track athletes so I hope next year they plan on participating and working on improving what areas they are best at because a lot of this year was them finding not only what they like but what they can be most successful in.
“I remind my basketball players and students in class that besides swimming, track is probably the most beneficial sport for kids looking to grow in other sports,” the coach said. “Often times track is hard work and not easy to swallow because it is individual and we don’t like going up against someone that is bigger, faster or stronger than us, but it is very honest. Track will show an athlete what one needs to work on as well as athletic grow over a year either through marks, throws, etc, or not. So, track really puts things into perspective for students and as I stated before I believe if we could get more kids out we would only reap the benefits of that in our other sports. I am proud still of our kids’ work and attitude and hope for the best next year for all those that didn’t earn a trip to State.
Looking ahead to State
Collingwood said that the two Riverside athletes that made it to State is a wonderful accomplishment for them.
“Obviously, Sabrina was our only returning state qualifier, but it is important to note that it isn’t always easy to make it,” Collingwood said. “So she, as well as James deserve the credit for working hard and fighting for a spot. Sabrina will have a real opportunity to make finals in the discus if she can focus on her throws and put together a good day in discus. She has been throwing over 100 in practice and if she can do that at State it will put her in the mix.
“Once State starts all the previous marks and work go out the window and people just have to go do their best, and I believe if she can use her experience and confidence she can do great in that. Pole vault will be more of a challenge for her to compete. There are some girls that are vaulting some great marks so we will set a goal for her to reach and see what she can do.
“James has the capability to run a 17-second 110-meter hurdles if we can get his form cleaned up and keep his concentration down the track through all the hurdles,” the coach said. “The last couple of meets it seems like it has been one or two hurdles that have tripped him up and kept him from breaking into the high 17s. This week we are going to focus him on his hurdle form and get him dialed in to give him the best chance to make finals.
“I am happy for him to be going to State as this will be his first year running at state track but felt bad for him because he really could have been going in the 400 for sure but wasn’t able to get a typical time for his 400. But all in all it should be fun for both of them and I hope that the weather is good for an enjoyable experience.”
The State Track Meet will begin today (Thursday) at 11 a.m. at Kelly Walsh High School in Casper.
By Sam Smith