With improved numbers, track program looks to add team success to individual accomplishments
Caleb Casey | Managing Editor
With improved numbers this year, Grayling High School’s track program is looking to build on some of its individual success in past years by putting up strong team scores at meets during the spring 2019 season.
“We currently have 45 runners on our roster, which is more than we had last year,” Coach Michelle Moore said. “There is a good mix of returning athletes, incoming freshmen, and new athletes to the program.”
“With the better numbers this year we should be able to have a full roster going into meets. This should help us score more points to finish stronger as a team,” Coach Moore said.
The program started its official practices for the 2019 spring campaign on Monday, March 11.
Because the track at Viking Stadium was still covered with snow prior to spring break, the team had to practice indoors during its first two weeks of the pre-season. The athletes ran in the hallways at Grayling High School and worked out in the weight room.
“Until the weather gets better, we are utilizing the weight room to do circuit training and lifting as well as the hallways,” Coach Moore said. “The hallway is a horrible place to run. It’s hard on the legs and can lead to injuries. We try to limit that by supplementing workouts with circuit training in the weight room.”
“Using the weight room the athletes work on core and quad strength, especially the sprinters and jumpers. Our hurdlers took to the hallway with a couple of hurdles to start working on their approaches. Other sprinters worked on block starts in the hallway,” Coach Moore said.
Coach Moore said her expectations for the team this year is to “be competitive every meet.”
“With higher numbers, that should keep the pressure on our athletes to step up and run hard each meet. As the season progresses I’d like to see our relay teams become more competitive once we find out what all of our new athletes are good at,” Coach Moore said.
Goals for the 2019 season?
“To keep getting better and push each other daily. I expect several (personal records) by the end of the season and if that helps someone qualify for the state finals, then that would make it even better,” Coach Moore said.
Coach Moore said she has some strong returners who are helping to lead the way for some of the less experienced track and field athletes on the squad.
“Bri Martin is a returning leader who qualified for state in cross country. I’m looking to her to lead our distance team this year. Allie Moffit has been a strong contributor over the past two years and she should be able to lead mid distance and sprinters. Max Halstead comes off an impressive wrestling season and has been a strong long jumper and has set his eyes on breaking the school record. He, along with Zach Osga, are strong leaders. I’m looking for these athletes to lead our young runners and help them become better athletes,” Coach Moore said.
Prior to spring break, the Vikings competed in the CMU Chippewa Invitational at Central Michigan University. After break, the track team will compete in a Lake Michigan Conference jamboree at East Jordan on Wednesday, April 10, at 4 p.m. if weather and facility conditions allow it.
Coach Moore said she expects the league to offer tough competition again this season.
“(The Lake Michigan Conference) is always strong. A full roster at the meets should help us this year. We have some individuals who should be strong in the conference, but it’s anybody’s guess right now since we’re all stuck inside,” Coach Moore said.