Gradaution leaves big holes on SHS track and field team
A number of familiar faces that local track and field fans saw in Salisbury uniforms over the past four years won’t be back in 2017. It will be a new-look group leading the Falcons this year, while some familiar faces are back.
State-runner up in triple jump event and 13-time district medalist Lindsay Bauer is the most recognizable face that will me missing this spring. She has move to Rider College. But the Falcons also graduated a number of others, including Colonial League javelin champion Tevon Weber.
“Our goal is to be competitive in all our meets,” Falcon head coach Victor DeOliveira said. “Our lower numbers will be problematic against the schools that field teams twice our size. We will do our best during the regular season and hope to do well individually in leagues and districts.”
Both the boys and girls teams went 2-9 in the Colonial League last year.
Along with Bauer, Kierra Burda, Sarah Galantini (sixth in javelin at last year’s District 11 Class 2A Track and Field Championships) and Sydney Utesch (seventh in high jump) were responsible for plenty of the girls’ points on a meet-by-meet basis. All have graduated. And Kyra Bruns, who placed ninth in the 300 meter hurdles at districts last season, won’t be returning after recent ACL surgery.
On the boys’ side, Ian Carson (sixth in high jump), Joseph Fainor and Adam Smith have also moved on. A number of those former Falcons played a big role in the distance running events, which may figure to be a growing pain for this group.
“I believe our strength will be in the jumping and field events,” DeOliveira said. “We have some good runners but just not enough of them.”
Those that figure to have a strong impact in the team scores in the jumping events begin with junior Jack Reichenbach. He placed sixth in the long jump at districts in 2017. Robbie Kulp (fourth in high jump) is expected to have another strong season after opening eyes last year, and the combination of Madison Jewell and Kaitlyn Rutt are also back in the pole vault after finishing fifth and eighth at districts, respectively.
“We have a low number of participants in pole vault and distance running this season,” DeOliveira said. “We will have to show some good quality in these areas to be able to point throughout the season.”
Rylee Donaldson earned district hardware as a freshman last year in the 400-meter dash and returns looking for more in her sophomore season.
Caitlin Hoeing, Erica Holben, Margaux Petruska and Zach Stringer also figure to be among the top returnees this spring.
Salisbury is scheduled to open the season Thursday as it hosts Pen Argyl and Notre Dame (Green Pond) at 3:30 p.m.