It's go time: Cardinals ready for Region 3 Meet this weekendA high school track and field regular season can be compared to a warm-up of sorts. It’s a period of time where relay teams can be fine-tuned, throwing techniques can be perfected and coaches can juggle athletes through events to see where optimal team finishes can be attained. A team’s final score and position in a particular meet throughout the regular season really doesn’t bare much impact. It’s the potential of where that team can go, what it can learn and where it can finish when the gloves are finally off.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
A high school track and field regular season can be compared to a warm-up of sorts.
It’s a period of time where relay teams can be fine-tuned, throwing techniques can be perfected and coaches can juggle athletes through events to see where optimal team finishes can be attained.
A team’s final score and position in a particular meet throughout the regular season really doesn’t bare much impact. It’s the potential of where that team can go, what it can learn and where it can finish when the gloves are finally off.
For the Carrington Cardinals, the gloves come off on Saturday.
Both the Carrington girls’ and boys’ track and field teams have been finishing near or at the top of all the meets they’ve competed in throughout the 2010 season — the girls’ team has won all but two.
But the postseason finally starts on Saturday in Carrington, as the Cardinals host the Class B Region 3 track and field meet, starting at 11 a.m.
“We really don’t try to win meets until the end of the year,” Carrington coach Greg Hoeckle said. “For this one, we’ll be going full force trying to score as many points as we can.”
Those words should be scary for any other Region 3 girls’ team competing on Saturday, considering the Cardinal girls have been nearly unstoppable this season.
The Cardinal girls dominated the 24-team field at the Well County Invitational last Saturday in Fessenden, rolling up 150 team points to defeat runner-up Benson County by a staggering 77 points. The girls’ team also finished second (123) to the Jamestown Blue Jays (165) at the 21st Annual Last Chance Meet on Monday at Jamestown’s Taylor Stadium.
“We’ve been pretty solid all year. But our region is pretty tough as far as girls’ teams go, with Benson County, Langdon and Wells County-New Rockford-Sheyenne.” Hoeckle said. “We feel that we have a good chance to come into the meet and do well. The girls have prepared well, and they’re also prepared mentally.”
The team has qualified for state 10 girls already and has been led on the track by freshman sprinter Josey Page and senior hurdler Hope Carr.
Page has state qualified in both the 100 -and -200-meter dashes, and defeated defending 100-meter state champion Julie Dinius, of Langdon, at the Wells Co. Invite. Pages’ blistering time of 12.54 defeated Dinius by two one-hundredths of a second (12.56) in the 100 finals. The state-qualifying standard in the event is 13.04.
Carr has qualified in both the 100 hurdles and 300 hurdles, and, along with Page, has been a staple on the team’s sprint relays. The Carrington girls have state qualified in all of their relays this season, the 400, the 800, the 1600 and the 3200.
“Those are two of our main girls, but we have a big supporting cast,” Hoeckle said. “We have the luxury of covering more area than in year’s past. We have good people in the jumping and throwing events, javelin especially.”
Carrington’s Sierra Rosenau currently has the top javelin mark in the state. The sophomore heaved a toss of 133-5.5 — the longest toss in the state so far — to win last Saturday’s javelin event in Fessenden. The state qualifying standard is 115 feet.
Carrington eighth grader Kayla Hochhalter has also qualified in the javelin and is also consistently throwing over the 100-foot mark in the discus. Hochhalter’s state-qualifying javelin toss of 126-4.5 at the Wells County Invite was good enough for third place at the meet.
“We are able to cover a lot more area this year, and we’ve got girls that can step up which makes us a good team, especially when it comes to the region,” Hoeckle said. We’ll need some things to go our way.”
The Carrington girls’ track and field team has won 6 state championships, but when it comes to winning No. 7 this season coach Hoeckle prefers to err on the side of caution.
“At the state meet, the level of competition is quite a bit different once you get everyone together. Usually, in Class B, you need three powerful athletes,” Hoeckle said. “Benson County has to be one of the favorites at the state level, with the way they control the distance races, and Langdon is also real tough.
“We’d really need to have the girls step up to get into that top five, but we definitely have the capability to. We have a couple of athletes in that top tier, but it takes a lot of firepower to compete in the Class B girls’ division.”
On the Carrington boys’ side of things, senior Devin Barton, and juniors Easton Page and Jordan Mittleider have been leading the way.
Barton has state-qualified in both the shot put and the discus, while Page has also qualified in both the 1600 and the 3200. Mittleider has qualified for state in the 110-meter hurdles.
“They’ve got a good supporting cast, too,” Hoeckle said. “We’re hoping for a top three (region) finish with the boys as well. Hopefully we’ll get some things to go our way.”
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org