Track Team Holds Its Own In Early Season

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The Longhorn track and field team sprinted, jumped and threw its way to a blazing beginning this season in the 3A North Skydome Classic March 1.

The 15-team meet was held at Northern Arizona University's Walkup Skydome and saw a first-place finish by the boys team and a fourth-place finish for the girls.

The boys team edged Snowflake, 65 to 61 points, for the victory. Blue Ridge came in third with 39 points and Sedona Red Rock captured a fourth-place finish with 34.5 points.

The victory for the Horns came largely as a result of stellar performances from shot putters Scott Andrus and Morgan Cassuto.

The two took first and second place in the event, respectively, with distances of 45 feet, 2 inches and 44 feet, 3 inches. Matt Wilson also earned two points for the Horns with a fifth-place distance of 41 feet, 3 inches.

Carlan Pontious showed some grit and proved to be essential in the Horns' overall victory, contributing 12 points to the team total with two third-place finishes in the 1,500-meter run and 3,000-meter run.

Troy Brown also tallied 12 points, clearing 6 feet, 2 inches and placing second in the high jump. He bounded 40 feet, 5.5 inches in the triple jump, placing fourth.

Nick Goodman and Isaac Cluff earned third- and fourth-place finishes for the Horns after clearing 11 feet in the pole vault.

Speedster Brandon Alexander added six points for the Horns with a 7.4 second time, good enough for a third-place finish in the 60-meter dash.

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Donovan Swanson works on his pole vaulting technique at practice. His efforts may assist the Longhorn track and field team in today's (Friday) meet at Estrella Foothills.

The Horns point total was also padded by fifth-place finishes by Nate Doyle with a time of 23.75 in the 200-meter dash and Chase Sevey's 19 foot, 1.5 inch leap in the long jump.

The boys 4x400 relay team placed sixth overall.

The Lady Horns compiled 48 points, just behind Monument Valley's third place team-total of 52. Snowflake dominated the meet, totaling 66.2 points. Blue Ridge came in second overall with 54 points.

The pole vaulters accounted for 18 of the team's points with first- and second-place finishes by Shanna Coleman and Sarah Agnes, respectively.

Maddie Nossek contributed 18 points herself with a winning long jump of 16 feet, 4 inches and a second-place leap of 4 feet, 10 inches in the high jump.

Kayla Morgan placed second in the shot put with a launch of 35 feet, 4 inches.

The girls 4x400 relay came in fourth with a time of 4:32.33.

Coach Chuck Hardt said he was pleased with how the teams fared, especially this early in the season.

"We're a pretty young team," he said. "I'm looking forward to getting some time in to train and see how we'll do this season."

The Horns' next challenge will present itself today, Friday, at a state-qualifying meet at Estrella Foothills at 3 p.m.

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