Tigard could be at its best in the distance races in 2007
by: DAN BROOD, STATE RETURNEE — Tigard’s Nika Viamonte-Lyons  (right) qualified for state in a pair of events last year.

TIGARD - The Tigard High School girls track and field team looks to be ready to run.

Led by a strong distance running crew, the Tigers are taking high hopes into the 2007 season.

'The girls team should place at least third and may be able to finish as high as second at the district meet in May,' Tigard coach Gabe Doebler said.

Tigard has a good number of returnees from last year's girls team that had a 4-2 Pacific-9 Conference dual meet record and placed fourth at the league's district meet.

Among the returnees is sophomore Nika Viamonte-Lyons. Last year, as a freshman, she qualified for the state meet in both the 800 and 1,500-meter runs after placing second in both of those races at the district meet.

Junior returnees Ali Davis and Sarah Walch will run both the 1,500 and 3,000. Walch was third in the 3,000 at district a year ago.

Junior Cassie Carroll gives the Tigers more depth in the distance events as she'll run the 800 and the 1,500.

In the hurdles, Tigard returns another state meet competitor from a year ago in senior Courtney Schild. Last year, she earned a state bid by placing second in the 300 low hurdles at the district meet.

Other Tigers who could challenge for a state berth this year include junior Trianna Brannon in the high jump and junior Heather Loyd in the long jump.

In the throws, Tigard should be strong with junior Alysha Brannon in the discus and juniors Sarah Rehm and Larissa Hjort in the javelin.

Sophomore Becky Robinson will run the 200 and 400. Junior Nicole McAllister will run the 400, sophomore Karen Ellis will run the 100 high hurdles and junior Kaila Bittinger will pole vault and run the 300 low hurdles.

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