The Montezuma-Cortez High School Lady Panthers track and field season has begun with practices in full force heading into next Saturdays meet in Farmington, N.M.
We got a nice group of girls, Lady Panthers coach Paul Koops said. We lost some big seniors, so were looking for a few people to step up. We got some good talent that worked a little bit over the winter. Its always exciting to have some new faces.
M-CHS may get some more talent on the team from those recovering from injuries in other sports. There is state meet returning experience in senior distance runner Carly Wolf, junior thrower Ashley Lingo, who placed fifth at state in the discuss and broke the M-CHS school record, and junior Bailey Morris, who qualified as a member of the 4 x 800 relay team as a freshman.
To qualify for state, one must be in the top 18 of that event in a pool of more than 60 4A and 5A Colorado schools. M-CHS competes in the 5A/4A Southwestern League.
In that top 18 format, I have some kids who I think will make that. Im excited, Koops said.
Lingo will also do the shot put this year and Koops has high expectations for her this season.
Ashley has got a lot of talent in the disc. Shes the kind of kid who I see getting points for us in every meet, Koops said about Lingo.
Lingo wants to continue to improve personal records (PR) this year.
I went to state and had been throwing really good. I threw 116, which is eight feet over than what I normally do. Then I threw 131 and got fifth, so it was pretty cool, Lingo said about the discus last season. I want to break the state meet record, which is 144. My ultimate goal is to just keep PR-ing at each meet. I want to make myself better each meet.
Junior Laura Heaton and sophomore Randy Elliot are expected to contribute well in the throwing events also.
Sophomore Amanda Gallegos returns from last years 4 x 400 school record relay team.
Shes worked really hard all winter. Shes coming in, in really good shape, Koops said about Gallegos. She has a super attitude in terms of just enthusiasm and is committed to doing the work it takes.
Wolf will run in the 400 and 800-meter events, as well as the 4 x 400 and 800-meter relays, and the two-mile race.
Shes battled some injuries. Shes coming in with a great attitude and pretty good shape. Its exciting to see her want to run at that level. I think if she stays healthy, she can, Koops said about Wolf.
Wolf has high goals for her senior season.
My expectations are to get some records at our school, Wolf said. I want to get the 400 and 800, which my sister has. I want to get the 4 x 4(00) and 4 x 8(00). Were working really hard in the 4 x 4(00) to get the record and go to state.
Bob Archibeque is the head track and field coach and his longtime assistant is older brother Larry Archibeque, who has been with the M-CHS track and field program for 19 seasons, will coach the boys and girls sprints and hurdles.
Josh Walton coaches the throws on both sides. Jeremy Yarbrough will oversee the jumps and some hurdles on each side. Koops will coach the distance runners on both sides, and Bob Archibeque will be in charge of the sprinters and relay teams.
M-CHS will open the season Saturday, March 12, at the Piedra Vista High School Invitational in Farmington, N.M., and will host two meets this season on Thursday, March 24, and Tuesday, April 26.
Reach Bobby Abplanalp at [email protected]