Track & Field: Revamped Wolves lineup set for track season

Spring sports preview: Track & Field

Head coach: Brad Moore (23rd year)

2016 finish: Boys — 8-2, fourth at league meet, eighth (tied) at districts, 17th at state (four medalists); Girls 8-3, third place at league meet, seventh at districts, 19th (tied) at state (one state champion, two medalists overall)

Top returning athletes: Boys — Michael Larsen (sr.), Brenden Lauritzen (sr.), Silas Isenberger (so.), Curtis Gorr (sr.), Connor Martin (so.), Riley Martin (so.), Dru Grasseth (jr.), Richard Hall (so.), Michael Mattern-Hall (so.), Andrew Cambalik (so.), Emmanuel Gomez (so.). Girls — Cheryl Armstrong (sr.), Elizabeth Sweet (so.), Hilary Holtrop (sr.), Kristinna Barnet (jr.), Emma Beeson (jr.), Rylee Gray (sr.), Clarisse Finman (sr.), Telicia Busby (jr.), Bailey Cauffman (so.), Astrid Martin (jr.), Shayli Schuman (so.), Elena Springer (jr.), Kaitlyn Viada (so.)

Key newcomers: Boys — Ash Francis (so.), Murray Bingham (so.), Alec Shingleton (so.), Keeshawn Whitney (so.), Jazen Bartee (so.), Jesse Bobst (fr.), Liam Byrne (so.), Bailey Gorr (so.), Fischer Jensen (so.), Kyle Klopfenstein (sr.), Raymond Lam (so.), Samuel May (fr.), Jacob Pyeatt (so.), Byron Rice (jr.), Darren Salazar (fr.), Iain Thill (fr.), Benjamin Wright (fr.). Girls — Morgan Bingham (sr.), Annika Christiansen (so.), Erin Dwyer (fr.), Abigail Fierro Burdick (fr.), Madeline Henderson (fr.), Kili Jeanmarie (so.), Lindsey Leader (fr.), Daisy Ryan (fr.), Sarah Ulmer (jr.)

Key league competition: Boys — North Kitsap, Olympic, Kingston. Girls — Olympic, North Kitsap, Bremerton

Perhaps more than any other sport, track and field coaches have their proverbial hands full each season reloading their rosters.

With as many as 70 athletes each spring, Sequim’s Brad Moore is well-versed in that respect — perhaps no more so than this season. The Wolves graduated or lost to injury or others sports eight athletes who competed at last year’s state 2A meet, including 800-meter champ Waverly Shreffler and double-medalists Oscar Herrera and Jackson Oliver.

“Hard to replace (that class),” Moore says. “We have way fewer seniors. It’s a whole different vibe.”

Still, the Sequim coach in his 23rd year sees plenty of solid returners and newcomers on a roster that features about 50 athletes.

“The kids out here are great kids,” Moore said.

On the girls’ side Elizabeth Sweet, who as as freshman placed ninth in the pole vault at the state meet with a personal best 10-foot mark, is back. So is Cheryl Armstrong, who took eighth in the discus at districts, along with relay regulars Telicia Busby, Rylee Grey and Emma Beeson. Moore expects good things from returners Hillary Holtrop (jumps) and Clarisse Finman (throws, jumps), as well as newcomers Lindsey Leader and Sarah Ulmer. Morgan Bingham, a state 2A cross country meet qualifier, anchors the distance squad.

The Wolves lost both Elizabeth Rosales and Kiara Pierson to injuries, however.

New additions on the boys’ side include cross country standouts Ash Francis, Murray Bingham and Alec Shingleton, as well as Riley Cowan, an all-league football player who’ll use his quarterback skills in the javelin.

Returnees Michael Larsen (jumps), Brendan Lauritzen (throws) Silas Isenberger (sprints) and Curtis Gorr (relays) look to rack up points for SHS’s boys in league meets.

Moore also has high expectations for the Martin brothers — Konnor on pole vault and Riley in the 110- and 300-meter hurdles.

Sequim’s tracksters will have new equipment this year, as the district added roll-out pads for the triple jump and pole vault venues, as well as a U-shaped mat for the high jump.

Moore said the Wolves may not be top-of-the-pack in the Olympic League this year, partly because of depth.

“We’ll have a sprinkling in each discipline,” he said. “We’ll be more middle-of-the-pack (but) it’s hard to say with so many new kids.”

Sequim competes at the Port Angeles Invite on March 17. The Wolves host Bremerton and North Mason on March 29.

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