South Tahoe track heating up, Brosch sets two school records at Fallon Elks Invitational
In a season filled with cold temperatures and inclement weather early on, the South Tahoe track and field team is starting to thaw out. The Vikings competed in their third meet of the campaign last Saturday, March 26, and delivered strong marks at the 44th annual Fallon Elks Invitational.
“The kids are excited and it’s been a happy beginning of the year for this team,” Vikings coach Jake Hurwitz said. “It hasn’t hindered us, we just look to see a lot more improvement later in the season.”
Junior Maya Brosch wrote her name in the South Tahoe record books Saturday by breaking the school record in the 100 hurdles (15.40) and 200 (25.98) en route to second-place finishes in each event. In her third year, the reigning Div. I-A State champion in the 300 hurdles now owns STHS records in four events.
“She’s finally got her competitive edge for this season,” Hurwitz said. “It’s been off and on with the cold, but it’s looking awesome for her and she’s really excited.”
Jenny Burks held the previous school record of 15.71 in the 100 hurdles, which she set at the 2014 state championships. The previous 200 record of 26.13 was set by Danielle Cohn in 2012.
“She wants to take them all,” Hurwitz said, adding that Brosch eventually wants to set the 100 and 800 records. “She’s ambitious and one heck of an athlete — she’s very talented and it’s fun to watch.”
On the girls side, Brosch and sophomore distance runner Ally Sullivan are South Tahoe’s top individual athletes. Sullivan ran in the 800 (14th, 2:36.30) and 3,200 (seventh, 12:23.54) last Saturday — both will compete in the prestigious Arcadia Invitational in Southern California held April 8-9.
“Those two are definitely turning heads,” Hurwitz said. “They’re high-end athletes competitive outside of our division.”
Talented individual performers and an experienced group of distance runners bolster South Tahoe’s boys team. Senior Quinn Ritter delivered his best marks of the season in long jump (18-6 3/4) and triple jump (37-8 1/4) at Fallon, in his second year focusing on both events.
“We’re just trying to get his marks right,” Hurwitz said. “He’s definitely put on some muscle weight and is looking a lot more stout, and we’ve been adjusting his steps accordingly — within the next week or two he’s about to pop.”
Senior Carson Alexander missed out the state meet by inches in hurdles last season after a fall at regionals, and wants to end his season there while getting close to the South Tahoe record. The veteran that has taken more of a leadership role this year finished fourth in the 300 hurdles (43.43) and ninth in the 110 hurdles (17.17) at the Fallon Elks Invitational.
“He’s really pumped to come out and show that he can be at state,” Hurwitz said. “He’s got a drive and competitive nature this year that he didn’t have as much as a freshman or sophomore.”
In the distance events, South Tahoe has a veteran group that features seniors Orion Maxwell, Paul Mutz, Mario Mangiaracina and Daniel Sandborn. That experience has made the Vikings’ 4×800 team strong, with those runners fighting for spots along with sophomore David Holmes and freshman Calvin Holmes.
“We’ve got a big core group of seniors this year,” Hurwitz said. “We’re looking really good with that group.”
Amongst the throwers, siblings Blair and Jackson Binns lead the way for the Vikings’ boys while senior Kerry Norton and junior Claudia Janese have delivered promising results on the girls side. In her second year, sophomore Theresa Sandborn also competes in shotput and discus along with the long jump and 400.
South Tahoe has more sprinting speed on the girls side to go along with strong mid-distance athletes, and hopes to field a competitive 4×100 team this season. That group of sprinters includes freshmen Eliza Branch and Loralei Dixon, who ran last year as part of an STMS relay team that continuously broke the school record.
The Vikings have 55 athletes on their 2016 roster, an average amount compared to recent seasons. For the first time in recent years, South Tahoe has depth in its underclassmen ranks — providing optimism for this season and the future.
“We have a younger team, and a lot of the kids are just starting to see the benefits of our practices now,” Hurwitz said. “It’s pretty cool. We’re excited for this year.”
South Tahoe returns to action Friday, April 1, at the two-day Reed Sparks Rotary Invitational. The meet will be held at Reed High in Sparks, Nevada.
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