By Coach Steve Wilbur
Special to the Islands’ Weekly
Track is cyclical on Lopez, going from more than 20 athletes in 2010 and 2011 to fewer than 10 this year. Chalk it up to graduations, injuries, cold weather, fate.
This year’s team is also young, with only two seniors on board. That means that our focus this year will be on developing individual performance rather than focusing on team scores, which require a large team. In the area of individual performance, we are strong.
Returning are last year’s State track meet participants, Solomon Bill and Marina Steinbrueck in the distance and throwing events respectively. Both won their events last week in LaConnor, Wash., Bill in the 3200-meter and Steinbrueck in the shot put. Both are expected to excel this year and return to the state meet in Cheney, Wash.
Back after her junior year in Germany is senior Jamie Cummins. Cummins won the 800-meter run last week in LaConnor against much larger schools. She also placed second overall in the 100-meter hurdles, her premier event.
Grant Fisher, a superb sprinter is back after a year’s hiatus. Newcomers, freshman Brianne Swanson and junior Nia Bartolucci are welcome additions to our small team. Swanson is a superb all round athlete with a lot of promise for the years to come.
Last week, she won the 100-meter and 400-meter and placed second in the high jump at LaConnor against larger schools and older athletes. She also starts the girls 4X200 relay team, with teammates Jamie Cummins, Nia Bartolucci and Emebet Bill. Bartolucci, who hasn’t run track before is also a powerful sprinter, placing in both the 100 and 200-meter events.
Josef Blanc-Ridings is returning to the sprint events and triple jump, and Jacob Simmering will be again tackling the middle distance events.
Neither has competed yet this year, but they are ready to show what they can do. The team is rounded out by throwers Erik Jonasson, who has already bested his best shot put effort from last year, and new addition
Daniel Jenison, who shows great potential in the shot put. Emebet Bill will be long jumping, having jumped high school competitive distances last year as a middle schooler.
Keep up with our results and see who we are doing against the rest of the state on www.athletic.net.