Track teams show improvement

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The Moffat County track teams continued to improve on a sunny Saturday in Rangely.

The boys team finished third out of 14 teams and had someone in the top eight in 12 of the 17 events.

The girls team was fifth and had 11 finishes in the top eight.

"It was good for our guys to see themselves up at the top," coach Todd Trapp said. "We were in the lead for most of the day, but Fruita (Monument) went 1-2-3 in the 800 to make the difference."

Class 5A Grand Junction High won six events to take the meet title.

A highlight for the boys was the emergence of sophomore Sam Weeldryer as one of the team's top sprinters. Weeldryer finished sixth in the 100-meter dash and tied senior Daniel Tague for third in the 200.

The boys' middle distance and distance teams racked up some points.

In the 1,600, sophomore Jake Miller broke the five-minute barrier for the first time with a 4:59.28 and a second-place finish. Senior Steve Crisp was a step behind in third place and freshman Mike McNicol finished in sixth.

Sophomore Jeremy Bird was second in the 3,200 for the Bulldog distance crew.

In middle distance, junior Derek Duran and senior Rowan Dubois earned the team points.

Dubois was second in the 400 with a time of 54.43 seconds.

Duran finished fourth in the 800, but his time of 2:03 was more impressive to his coach.

"Derek ran a great race," Trapp said. "The Fruita guys battled back-and-forth, and Derek stuck in there behind them and ran even splits for a good time this early on."

The 400 relay of Tague, sophomore Andrew Drake, junior Daniel Cramblett and junior Jake Bilodeau finished second. The 800-relay team (Dubois, Weeldryer, senior Cole Hausner, Drake) was victorious. The 1,600-relay team (Dubois, Duran, Drake, freshman Eli Buckner) took third. The 3,200-relay team (Duran, McNicol, Miller, Bird) smoked the rest of the field by more than 20 seconds.

Other top-eight finishers were Crisp, seventh in the 800, and Bilodeau, fifth in the shot put.

The girls team was without junior Anna Herring and Mari Katherine Raftopoulos, who are finishing disciplinary suspensions, and the stars of the first meet, freshmen Jorgiea Raftopoulos and Angie Charchalis, were out of town for the meet, but coach Vicki Haddan like what she saw from the rest of the group.

Senior Angela Nelson and April Sanchez earned spots in the top eight. Nelson cruised to a 4-second victory in the 800 and Sanchez inched closer to the 100-foot mark in the discus with a seventh-place toss of 93 feet, 10 inches.

Sanchez's fellow thrower, senior Brittani Weber, improve in the shot put by more than 2 feet from last week. Her throw of 35 feet, 7 1/2 inches was good enough for second place.

The distance crew put up four top-eight finishes. Senior Emily Sperl was second in the 1,600 and senior Amelia Parker was in fifth.

The 3,200 hundred was led by sophomore Katie Morris' sixth-place finish and junior Alyssa Macomber's eighth-place run.

Freshman Markie Workman worked her way to two top-eight places. She was eighth in the triple jump and fifth in the high jump.

The Bulldogs had two relay teams run for points.

The 1,600-relay team of Nelson, Sperl, freshman Jeacey Robinson and freshman Collins was fourth. The 3,200-relay team (Nelson, Parker, Sperl, Robinson) finished two seconds behind Fruita for second.

Next weekend the Bulldogs start a streak in which four of their next six meet will be at Stocker Stadium in Grand Junction. This weekend Palisade hosts the meet.

David Pressgrove can be reached at 824-7031 or dpressgrove@craigdailypress.com.

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