By Kristi Leonard
The Berthoud High School track and field team opens their season on March 11 at Northridge High School in Greeley. The Spartans will compete against some new teams this year and will also renew some previous rivalries, as the school has moved to the 3A level for the next two years. Berthoud returns to competition with 3A powerhouses Eaton, University, and Platte Valley, as well as Classical Academy and Elizabeth High School, that have moved down. This year Berthoud has a strong chance to have both the boys and the girls teams place in the top 20 at state. Last year the girls finished 11th place at state in 4A. The boys did not place.
Young talent should help support the returning athletes on the girls’ side. Sophomore Cailey Archer is the top returning Spartan. According to co.milesplit.com, Archer is currently ranked first in the high jump, based on last year’s 5 foot 5.5 inch jump.
Archer will most likely team up with Samantha Mulder and Sophie Visger in the 800 and 1600 relays. Visger is currently ranked fifth in the long jump and 17th in the high jump. Seniors Mulder and Hannah Langer are ranked 10th and 11th in the 100 hurdles. Mulder holds a No. 10 ranking in the 300 hurdles as well.
Freshman Alyssa Bailey could add points in the sprints and the long jump. Bailey’s middle-school marks in the 200 dash and the long jump are already within the preseason top-18 rankings.
Maycee White, Alyssa Radloff and Alex Schultz may add points in the distance races.
Junior Wyatt Woodrick returns with the Spartans highest state ranking, at No. 3, in the long jump with his 20’ 10.25” from last season.
Jake Rafferty, Berthoud’s fastest sprinter, is ranked 13th in both the 100-meter dash and the long jump. Ryan Schmad is ranked ninth in the long jump and made the top-18 cut in the 200 meters.
Brock Voth is ranked ninth in the triple jump. Connor Siruta is ranked 14th in the high jump. Senior Cooper Skoric is ranked 16th in the 300 hurdles and Josh Doyle has potential for points in the distances, based upon his success in cross country. Berthoud’s relays should be strong, with Trinity Buckley and Blake Corbett taking handoffs from Woodrick, Rafferty and Schmad.
Berthoud has some work to do to fill big shoes in the throwing events and the pole vault, but Saturday will give athletes and coaches an idea of how the Spartans stack up against the Greeley and Loveland schools.