Meeker tracksters start season in Rifle; first home meet in years coming March 30

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MEEKER | More than 20 Meeker High School track and field athletes spent their first day of spring break in Rifle competing in a track meet, where several did well despite the weather. The teams will be idle this week but they will come back from break and prepare for their first home meet in several years on March 30.

“Despite being windy and a bit chilly, the kids had a pretty good start to the season,” Meeker assistant coach Kris Casey said after the Rifle meet. The Meeker girls team placed sixth out of 19 teams.

Returning state qualifier and placer Gracie Bradfield started the season fast, winning the 200-meter dash and placing second in the 100. Bradfield’s junior classmate Megan Shelton, also a state placer, won the shot put and discus in Rifle. Sydney Main, who also qualified in both throws last year, placed fourth in the discus and seventh in the shot put event in Rifle.

“Grace looks to build on her strong state meet from last year, where she reached the top of the podium in three events,” Meeker head coach John Strate said of his sprinter. “In the throws, the team is fortunate to have Megan and Sydnie returning. Both girls placed in the discus last year and Megan placed in the shot. Sydnie will look to qualify in the pole vault this year as well, and Megan is likely to push for a couple of our relay spots.”

Main placed eighth in the pole vault and Meeker junior Kenzie Turner tied for sixth in the pole vault with a personal record of seven foot.

Although relay teams have not been established yet, coach Strate is excited about returning relay leaders.

“We are fortunate to have a number of state placers returning from last years team,” coach Strate said. “On the girls side we will be led by seniors and state placers the last three years, Sierra Williams and Avery Watt. Both of these girls are excited about where they finished last year and they know the work it takes to finish on top. They will both be a very important part of our relays this year.”

Coach Strate said the boys will return state qualifiers Pake Burke, Kale Burke, Tannen Kennedy and Tevin Pelloni.

“Senior Matthew Beck is looking towards a strong season after qualifying for state cross county in the fall,” coach Strate said. “The boys’ team has a lot of young athletes this year that will gain valuable experience over the course of the season.”

Coach Strate would like to ask for volunteers for the March 30 home track meet on the new Bob King Track at Starbuck Stadium.