Boys team really starting to hit full gear

Progression is the name of the game in track and field, especially for a young team.

So at the halfway point of the season, Madras coach Melissa Bowerman likes what she has been seeing.

The White Buffalos are coming off another solid team outing after competing in the La Pine Invitational last weekend. The boys scored 65 points to earn fourth place, while the girls, who are bit shorthanded, finished eighth.

“The guys are doing really, really well,” Bowerman said. “A lot of them are (getting personal bests) every meet.”

That has been the norm over the first three weeks of the season and the Buffs continue to get times down and distances up.

Among those that seem to be really hitting their stride is freshman Drake Anderson, who has medaled in four events for two straight meets.

At La Pine, Anderson won the high jump, took third in the long jump and ran on both relay teams that finished in the top four.

And he is just getting started.

While the high jump is his main event, Anderson said he will work hard at running the 400 relay because his team needs him.

But he also has an eye on reaching his goal of 6-02 in the high jump.

“I been growing pretty much in the heights that I wanted,” Anderson said. “I think I’ll get there this year.”

Other top performances over the weekend included the 1,600 relay team of Victor Bonilla, Clayton Smith, Anderson and Miklo Hernandez taking six seconds off their best time of the year, Taylor Welsh posting a season-best time of 11.97 in the 100 and Smith doing the same in the 400, running a 56.33.

And all of this was in a pretty gusty wind, one strong enough to bend the legs on the Buffs' portable tent. That made the times that more impressive, Bowerman said.

For the girls, Kiana Rodriguez has run two sub-15 second 100-meter races in the last two weeks while Elle Renault lowered her personal best in the javelin, taking second with a throw of 114-11.

But for the most part, it’s been the number of girls the Buffs have, or haven’t, had out on the field. But Bowerman said many of them are slowly making their way back into competition.

“We’re happy with the way things are going,” Bowerman said.

Madras heads to Klamath Falls Friday.

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