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Crusaders aiming to continue Metro dominance

Jesuit's girls look well-armed to win again in the Metro


by: MILES VANCE - HEADED FOR HOME - Sunset junior Taylor Coon (shown here at the 2012 Class 6A state meet) hopes to help her team challenge Jesuit in the 2013 Metro League girls track and field race.

The 2012 season marked the first time in the past six years that a Metro League team did not win the Class 6A state title in girls track and field.

The Jesuit Crusaders would dearly love to right that wrong in 2013.

While the state meet is another matter, the Metro League's coaches seem pretty convinced of Jesuit's abilities.

“I've only seen Jesuit first-hand so far, but from what I saw, I'd be hard-pressed to say they wouldn't be the favorite to win it,” said Aloha coach Jay Miles, adding that “Sunset always comes prepared, though.”

It will be Jesuit “because Jesuit always has very good track athletes and they are deep in all events,” said Southridge coach Bruce Rife.

“They just have so much depth, and that wins dual meets,” Beaverton's Bob Boyer added.

Beyond Jesuit, though, there's more talent throughout the league, with Sunset and Lincoln mentioned most often as Metro contenders.

“Sunset has some sprinters and you can stretch that a long way,” Jesuit coach Tom Rothenberger said. “And Lincoln looks like it has some big-meet points too.”

Following are previews of the six Beaverton-area Metro League girls track and field teams.

ALOHA

ALOHA — Aloha is ready for a fresh start.

The Warriors roll into the 2013 season with re-made roster, a new head coach in Jay Miles but the same old desire to compete every week. And coming off a seventh-place finish in the Metro League and again at district, Aloha knows it will need to do just that.

“I think we're going to have to fight for every point we get, but we're up for it,” said Miles, a longtime Aloha assistant who ran collegiately at Washington State and previously coached at Benson and OES. “They're not discouraged at all.”

This year's team features just one returning district placewinner — senior Gabriela Aguilar was sixth in the Metro discus — but benefits from the return of senior distance runner Desyre Blackburn and features a number of other strong competitors. That group includes talented freshman Emma May and sophomore Lindsey Fletcher in the sprints, Allison Martinez in the distances, and sophomore Noheaililani Waiwaiole in the hurdles and jumps.

“The kids have been really receptive,” Miles said of his first season as head coach. “They've been eager and had no hesitation in approaching me as head coach.”

ALOHA

100-200: Marissa Ward, Fr.; Lindsey Fletcher, So.; Emma May, Fr.; Demetria Andrews, Jr.; Kenne Khiev, Fr. 400-800: Khiev; Allison Martinez, Jr. 1500-3000: Desyre Blackburn, Sr.; Martinez; Alyssa Foote, Fr.; Kathleen Neblett, Sr. Hurdles: Noheaililani Waiwaiole, So.; Jessie Price, Jr. Throws: Gabriela Aguilar, Sr.; Ciara Lambert, Fr. Jumps: Waiwaiole; May; Lambert. Pole Vault: Tabitha Vielmette, Sr.

BEAVERTON

BEAVERTON — Beaverton can run.

The 2013 Beavers bring back four athletes (Molly Mutz-McCay, Allie Mueller, Erin Gregoire and Hailey Brocker) who placed in seven individual events at district last year and should be even better in 2013.

That said, the Beavers must deal with the loss of its field-event leaders and Lexus Miller-Moylan, the 2012 Metro champ in the 400 who moved to La Grande. Further, they welcome long-time throws coach Bob Boyer as head coach to replace the departed Shane Kessler, now head coach at Tigard.

“We should be competitive and with hard work, we could have a chance of making some noise in some areas on the track … come district meet time,” Boyer said.

Mutz-McCay is back after placing in the district 100 and 200, Mueller scored in the district 800 and 3,000, Gregoire in the 1,500 and 3,000, and Brocker in the 400. Boyer said he also expects big contributions from senior Morgan Nobach in the jumps.

Gregoire and Mueller “should be consistent points-getters for us,” Boyer said, adding the Mutz-McCay and Nobach “should be exciting to watch.”

BEAVERTON

100-200: Molly Mutz-McCay, Jr.; Kamryn Smith, Fr. 400-800: Allie Mueller, So.; Hailey Brocker, Sr.; Erin Gregoire, So. 1500-3000: Gregoire; Mueller; Corinne Murray, Sr. Hurdles: Morgan Nobach, Sr.; Shayna Barnett, So. Throws: Nila Kamis, Jr.; Annalise Beshears, Sr. Jumps: Nobach; Robyn Schmutzer, Jr.; Selena Phandouangsy, So.; Anna-Liisa Sepp, Fr. Pole Vault: Barnett.

JESUIT

BEAVERTON — Jesuit is ready to drop the hammer.

And for the Crusader girls team, that hammer is depth. Race-by-race, event-by-event and step-by-step, Jesuit can fill out a lineup like nobody's business and will likely use that depth to great affect again in 2013.

“We'll be right in the mix,” said Jesuit coach Tom Rothenberger. “It depends on what other teams bring in … but I think things will sort themselves out.”

The Crusaders enter the 2013 as winners of three of the past five state crowns (they were sixth in 2012), not to mention 46 straight Metro dual meets (including their season opener against Aloha) and eight straight league titles.

Jesuit brings back athletes who placed in 17 times in individual events at district a year ago, that group led by defending Metro high jump champion Claire Alexander, jumper/hurdler Mariah Gibbs, sprinter Alexa Dixon, Megan Mullaney and Lindsey Sheaffer in the middle distances, Abby Wachter in the hurdles, and Rachel Shaw in the pole vault.

JESUIT

100-200: Alexa Dixon, so.; Katherine Clark, Fr.; Kathrina Slater, Jr.; Abby Wachter, Jr.; Chloe Smith, So. 400-800: Smith; Wachter; Lindsay Sheaffer, sr.; Ashley Arenz, Fr.; Megan Mullaney, Sr.; Ellie Kallgren, So.; Hadley Wilhoite, Fr. 1500-3000: Mullaney; Dylan Hite, So.; Kallgren; Zani Moore, So.; Taylor Moscoe, Jr. Hurdles: Mariah Gibbs, Sr., Wachter; Wilhoite. Throws: JoJo Ananouka, So.; Jasmine Leewong, Sr.; Tarea Green, So.; Claire McCarthy, Jr.; Connie Parker, Jr. Jumps: Claire Alexander, Sr.; Mariel Klein, Sr.; Karen Link, Jr.; Wilhoite; Gibbs; Leewong. Pole Vault: Rachel Shaw, Sr.; Franny Rogers, Sr.; Slater.

SOUTHRIDGE

BEAVERTON — The Southridge girls track and field team may not have the numbers to battle the league's biggest teams this year.

But the Skyhawks know they've got some quality performers and know they want to compete. If they do, there's a chance to make 2013 a pretty darned good year.by: MILES VANCE - HIGH FLYER - Southridge senior Jordyn Searle is aiming for another trip to the Class 6A state track meet in 2013.

I think we could finish “third or fourth,” said Southridge coach Bruce Rife, whose team placed sixth both in the 2012 regular season and again at the Metro district meet. “The key to success is staying injury free and getting better each week.”

This year's Skyhawk crew will be led by senior sprinter/jumper Jordyn Searle (she was second in the Metro long jump last year and fourth in the 100), senior hurdler/jumper Madison Smukalla, senior thrower Marissa Hamilton (second in the Metro shot put), junior distance runner Rachel Niesen (she was eighth in both the Metro 1500 and 3000), junior sprinter/jumper Natalie Leckey, and xxxxxx middle distance runner Heather LaPlante.

“Our leading point scorers will be Madison Smukalla, Rachel Niesen, Heather LaPlant, Marissa Hamilton, Natalie Leckey and Jordyn Searle,” Rife said. “If these girls stay injury free, they will do very well in league.”

SOUTHRIDGE

100-200: Jordyn Searle, Sr.; Natalie Leckey, Jr. 400-800: JJ Osborn, Fr.; Heather LaPlante, Sr.; Hayley DeBois, Jr. 1500-3000: Rachel Niesen, Jr. Hurdles: Madison Smukalla, Sr.; Molly Martin, Sr.; Leckey. Throws: Marissa Hamilton, Sr.; Megan Baker, Sr. Jumps: Smukalla; Searle. Pole Vault: Victoria Holton, So.

SUNSET

CEDAR MILL — Sunset was right there last year.

The Apollos were one of the Metro League's best, battling to a second-place tie in the regular season and then to solid finishes at both district and state.

And they may be even better this year.

The Apollos bring back eight district placewinners from a year ago, several of whom may have chances at winning Metro titles in 2013. The key to the regular season, though, is whether Sunset will have enough depth.

“On the girls side, we are cautiously optimistic about contending for the league title,” said Sunset coach Kevin Landon. “We know we have a very good big-meet team, but time will tell if we can develop enough depth to be a top dual-meet team.”

This year's team will be led by junior sprinter/jumper Taylor Coon (she was second in both the district 100 and 200 in 2012, and third in the long jump), junior sprinter Maddie Thom, junior distance runner Charlotte Corless, senior distance runner Sarah Fahmy (fourth in the Metro 800), and sophomore thrower Savannah Sharp (second in the discus, sixth in the shot).

I think they “all have the potential to compete for league titles in their events,” Landon said.

SUNSET

100-200: Taylor Coon, Jr.; Maddie Thom, Jr.; Mary Grace Roselli, Sr. 400-800: Thom; Marlee Leonard, So.; Kendall Butz, So.; Nicole Griffiths, Fr.; Sarah Fahmy, Sr. 1500-3000: Griffiths; Fahmy; Karen Qu, Sr.; Charlotte Corless, Jr. Hurdles: Hayley Gooding, Sr.; Butz; Sarah Haedrich, So. Throws: Savannah Sharp, So.; Maddie O'Leary, Sr.; Joely Yaptangco, So. Jumps: Amy Wang, Sr.; Danielle Sterba, So.; Gooding; Hannah Dodge, Jr. Pole Vault: Gooding.

WESTVIEW

ROCK CREEK — Westview kept its head above water in 2012 — the Wildcats finished 3-3 and tied for fourth place in the seven-team Metro League — and would love to do that again this year.

But the Cats know it won't be easy in a league stacked with talented, experienced state and district placewinners on almost every one of its seven teams.

That said, this year's Westview team has a few returners of its own that should fare very well indeed in the 2013 Metro League season. That group will be led by junior hurdler/jumper Hannah Lautenbach (she was fourth in the Metro triple jump last year, and seventh in both high hurdles and intermediates), sophomore sprinter/jumper Reed Richardson (she was fourth in the '12 long jump), senior hurdler Sarah Curl (eighth in the high hurdles), and junior middle distance/long distance runner Sarah Medved (seventh in the 1500).

“We don't have the depth at every position like we've had sometimes, but with the jumpers and hurdlers we have returning, we should be pretty solid,” said first-year head coach Aaron Johnson, a 2000 Westview graduate who takes over after five years as an assistant.

The Wildcats will also look to freshman sprinter Riley Hackley, sophomore middle distance runner Aiyana Bankston, junior distance runner Lilliana Considine, and sophomore jumper Madeline Leavitt.

WESTVIEW

100-200: Riley Hackley, Fr.; Reed Richardson, So; Paige Laflamme, Sr.; Lauren Gastineau, So. 400-800: Aiyana Bankston, So.; Rachel Gore, Fr.; Gastineau; Sarah Medved, Jr.; Rebecca Scheer, Jr. 1500-3000: Medved; Scheer; Lilliana Considine, Jr. Hurdles: Hannah Lautenbach, Jr.; Sarah Curl, Sr. Throws: Julia Schobben, Sr.; Bridgette Hickey, Jr.; Abigail Sefton, So.; Christina Spires, Fr. Jumps: Lautenbach; Richardson; Madeline Leavitt, So. Pole Vault: Emily McGaffey, Sr., Allison Messenger, Sr.; Heather Shinsel, Sr.



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