Track to host Spring Distance Festival this weekend


Parker Nolan

Senior Chase Van Wagoner sprints in the 100 meter event.

Drew Doig, Staff Reporter

The boys and girls distance runners will compete at the Lovejoy Spring Distance Festival this Saturday. The temperature will reach a high of 70 degrees during the meet along with a 60 percent chance of rain and thunderstorms.

Over 25 teams will head to the high school to compete this weekend including Prosper, Plano East, McKinney North, and Cedar Park.

There will be four events on Saturday: the 800 meters, 1600, 3200 and the 2000 meter steeplechase, each for the boys and girls.

The girls distance runners are led by sophomore Carson Hockersmith, junior Emily Gueller, sophomore Avery Silliman, and sophomore Sofia Estes.

“Carson has a strong shot at winning the 800 this year in the district meet and the other three should hopefully place well in the 3200 at the district meet,” girl’s track coach Logan Kelly said.

Kelly has high expectations for his team this year.

This year’s team has a great deal of depth in some areas we have been lacking in the past,” Kelly said. “Our goal is to win the district championship and to do so, we will need to be as deep as possible for each event at the district meet.”

Last weekend at the Lovejoy Invitational, the girls and boys teams had a lot of success. The girls team finished in second place, losing by only one point to Lewisville Hebron.

Hockersmith finished first in the 800, Grace Ridgeway finished first in the 300 hurdles and third in the 100 hurdles. Also, the 4X400 relay team finished first overall.

“For hurdles we return juniors Juliet Franz and Grace Ridgeway,” Kelly said. “Both are ranked in the top for 5A girls in the state.”

Junior Chase Van Wagoner finished first in the 100 and the 200 and sophomore Jake Chamberlin finished fourth in the 400.

Distance runners also competed very well last weekend.

Freshman Will Muirhead finished first in the the steeplechase, junior Ryan Brands finished second in the 1600, and junior Bradley Davis finished second in the 3200.

Sophomore James Rainey took third in the shot put and discus and senior Katie Hale finished second for the girls in the shot.

Coach Vince Hernandez said the throwing events will be a strength for the team when district rolls around.

“This is the first year we have had a full squad for the girls throwing events which will help us in the district meet,” Hernandez said. “This year we have gained a lot of new talent in our throwing events and have seen returning throwers improve a great deal under our throws coach.”