FALLS CITY/ PERRYDALE — Falls City and Perrydale’s track and field teams are ready to invade Portland.
The district meet could signal the emergence of a new force in 1A track and field.
Freshman Amity Deters is ranked among the top four in the long jump, triple jump, high jump and the 300-meter hurdles.
“She has a legitimate chance to go to state in four events,” Pirates coach Brian Evans said. “She’s ranked highest in the 300 hurdles and high jump, but if we can get her second phase down in the triple jump, she could do really well in that event. In the long jump, she’s sitting in fourth, but she’s athletic enough to pull out a big PR and make it to state.”
The only thing holding her back in recent weeks has been shin splints, Evans said.
Some of Deters’ stiffest competition in the jumps could come from teammate Alyssa Lux.
“She has the potential to make it to state in all three jumps with the long and triple jumps being her best events,” Evans said. “Her fourth event is the javelin. She has improved her distance in each meet. I can see her being the district champion next year. I’m just not sure we have enough time to improve her technique, but she could be a dark horse in that event.”
For the boys, Jacob Pope is ranked in the top five in the discus and javelin.
Moving up the ranking and qualifying for state is well within reach, Evans said.
“We are fine tuning his technique and we really hope that as a senior, he can pop off some big throws,” Evans said.
Abigail Bibler also has a chance at state in the shot put, but would require a personal record, Evans said.
“Our focus now is repetition and fine tuning, encouraging the kids to believe in themselves and their training and not to worry about their opponent but to just focus on the task at hand and have fun and make a memory,” Evans said.
Falls City track and field coach Ronnie Simmons wasn’t shy about expectations coming into the 2017 season. He’s excited about how the Mountaineers have developed throughout the spring.
Junior Jeremy Labrado may be primed for a big meet.
Labrado is ranked second in the league in the high jump and triple jump.
“Jeremy Labrado has natural athletic ability and determination,” Simmons said. “The Kempfer twins have put in a lot of hard work.”
The field events could be a strong point for the girls team.
Sophomore Jaime Shaw is ranked second in the triple jump, and Brittney Potts is tied for second in the high jump.
Simmons also expects to see strong performances from Amara Houghtaling and Madelyn Hendrickson.
Training has been a challenge with student-athletes balancing a number of school and extra curricular activities, Simmon said.
But this is when all the work put in during the season pays off.
Simmons won’t be judging how many athletes place or go state.
Instead, he hopes each kid performs thier best and focus on the meet at hand.
“The key for the kids to perform at their best will be having a total mindset for each event,” Simmons said. “Success to me is in the attitude of the athlete and whether or not they felt good with their performance. If it just so happens it gets them to state, then so be it.”