Turlock Christian and Denair High performed well in the first Southern Athletic League track meet, held March 8. TC’s girls finished in second place as a team and its boys finished in third. Denair’s team total was similar as its boys finished second and its girls ended the meet in third place.
“I was very happy with everybody’s performances,” TC’s head coach Pam Franco said.
“Overall, I think we did okay, even though we were missing some key athletes,” Denair’s head coach Jim Wagner said.
There were six Eagle athletes who finished atop the standings in one or more events. Martin Moreda took first place in the 200m and 400m races and Seth Retemeyer took first in the 100m, 200m, long jump and triple jump events. For the girls, Rebekah Muller placed first in the 200m and 800m races, Tiffany Franco placed first in the discus and second in the shot put, Emily Retemeyer finished first in the long jump and second in the 100m race, and Allie Ulrich took first in the pole vault.
“The only reason we’re getting lower (team) scores is because we don’t have the same numbers as some of the bigger schools,” Franco said.
Denair had a total of 13 athletes finish at either first or second in individual competition. On the boys side Quentin Allen placed second in the 100m and 200m races, Taylor Brunelle finished second in the 400m, Trey Howze finished first in the 300m hurdles and second in the 110m hurdles, Juan De La Cruz took first in the long jump, and Alejandro Gutierrez placed second in the triple jump. Carlos Suarez, Allen, Gutierrez, and De La Cruz also took first place in the 4x100m relay.
For the girls team, freshman Brooklyn Lowery finished in first place in the 300m hurdles and third in the 100m hurdles, Theresa Martinez took first in shot put and second in discus, and Janelle Knapp took first in the high jump. Cierra Jantz, Bridgett Burgess, Rosie Yemez, and Nella Zarnai also placed first in the 4x100m relay.
“It was a good showing and good experience,” Wagner said.
“That last 100 meters felt a lot longer than 100 meters, but it felt good,” first year track athlete De la Cruz said. “I’m still in basketball mode.”
With the first official meet out of the way, athletes and coaches now have a standard to work from. Younger athletes who had never competed in a track meet now know what is expected of them and their coaches now know what their athletes can achieve.
TC and Denair will continue to groom their teams in the Brenda Invitational track meet on Saturday before the Second SAL meet on March 23.