Tigard returns some key athletes from last year's title team

by: DAN BROOD - HURDLES HERO -- Tigard High School senior Lindsay Rosette (right), shown here in a meet from the 2013 season, looks to be one of the top hurdlers in the state this season.TIGARD — The 2013 season was something special for the Tigard High School track and field teams.

A year ago, both Tiger squads claimed Pacific Conference district meet championships.

But, with a new year, comes new challenges. And the Tigard team will likely face plenty of them.

Still, after what they accomplished last year, the Tigers are likely ready for anything.

“The attitude and energy is positive,” second-year Tigard head coach Shane Kessler said. “We’re building on what evolved last year. We’ve started off even better than last year. The kids are feeding off of that and we’re having a lot of fun.”

The Tigard girls return many strong competitors from a year ago, but they may be even stronger if they didn’t have to deal with injuries.

“We’re missing some good point-scorers,” Kessler said.

But the Tigers still have many key point-scorers back in action.

That includes senior Lindsay Rosette, who will compete in the hurdles and relay events. Last year, Rosette won a Pacific Conference district title in the 300-meter low hurdles and she went on to place third in that event at the Class 6A state championships.

Junior Brianna Stoppa returns to give the Tigers a strong one-two punch in the hurdles.

Tigard has another strong hurdler in junior Kaylie Boschma, who placed fifth in the 100 high hurdles at the Class 4A state meet last year, when she ran for Yamhill-Carlton. Freshman Sareena Patzke will also compete in the hurdles.

In the sprints, the Tigard girls will have senior Katherine Soldwedel, sophomore Abby Lewis and senior Kelly Fox. Freshman Kylie Warren could also compete in the sprints.

“She can do a lot of things,” Kessler said.

In the 800, Tigard will have sophomore Rachel Josephson and Lewis.

Senior Megan Franz will compete in the 800 and 1,500. She is the defending district champion in both of those events. She went on to place sixth in the 800 and 10th in the 1,500 at state.

Other distance runners for the Tigard girls include junior Hannaly Duff-McGaughey, freshman Marley Johnson and junior Mckenna Masterson. Sophomore Kasey Kallevig and freshman Jaelyn Gammons will also run in the distance events.

Sophomore Elise Conroy leads Tigard’s throwing crew. She’ll compete in the shot put and discus. Last year, she was the district runner-up in the shot put and she went on to place sixth in that event at the Class 6A state DAN BROOD - POWER -- Tigard High School sophomore Elise Conroy, shown here at last year's Class 6A state meet, should be a force for the Tigers in both the shot put and discus events.

Senior Alina Chobu will also compete in the shot put.

In the javelin, Tigard will have sophomore Morgan Chamberlain, junior Kaitlyn Mason and sophomore Daria Weber.

Tigard’s top javelin thrower from a year ago, Michelle Simmons, who placed fifth at the state meet, will miss the season due to injury.

Injury also could take its toll on Tigard in the pole vault. Junior Liz Prouty, who won a district title and placed second at state last year in that event, could miss part, or all of the season due to a foot injury.

Her younger sister, freshman Victoria Prouty, will compete in the pole vault this season.

In the high jump, the Tigard girls will have Josephson and Patzke.

As for the Tigard boys team this year, Kessler isn’t sure what to expect.

“Things are a little chaotic this season,” he said. “I have no idea how things will go. We return some talented kids and we have some good newcomers.”

One of the top returnees for the Tigard boys is senior Elijah Simon, who placed second at the state meet in the high jump last year. But, due to the Tigers’ long basketball season, he got his senior track campaign off to a late start.

“He hasn’t even competed yet,” Kessler said. “But he’s one of the highlights.’

Among the other top competitors for the Tigard boys will be junior Tyler Powers, who will compete in the 400 and the hurdles. Sophomore Tyler Rosette will compete in those same events.

Senior Michael Roberts could have a strong season in the hurdles.

“He battled injuries last year,” Kessler said. “But he’s a man on a mission this year.”

Tigard has a pair of veterans back in the distance events in seniors Martin Ramos III and Devin Roche.

In the jumps, Tigard will have sophomore Alex Gradin, senior Ruben Arellano and senior Niko Niblack.

Junior Devin Distant will lead the Tigard sprinters.

“He’s been working hard,” Kessler said.

Juniors Landon Floyd and Sam Inos will also run in the sprints.

In the throws, Tigard will have sophomore Conner Crist, senior Ian Schacter, sophomore Derek McMurray, freshman Tyson Crabtree and sophomore Spencer Olson.

In the pole vault, Tigard returns senior Jake Price, who qualified for the state meet last year.

Senior Daniel Williams will also compete in the pole vault.

The Tigard teams were slated to open their Pacific Conference dual meet schedule at home against Glencoe on Wednesday. Results of that meet weren’t available when The Times went to press.

The Tigers will be back in action Wednesday when they face rival Tualatin in a conference dual meet at Tualatin High School.

Field events start at 3:45 p.m. and track events will begin at 4:15 p.m.

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