Cotton Leads Young Ouray Team
OURAY/RIDGWAY/SILVERTON – “Our team found the fountain of youth!” said Ouray track and field coach Bernie Pearce, after his team’s showing at the 13-school Panther Invitational in Delta, on Saturday, March 16.
“After two years of junior-senior dominated squads, coaches Danny Wilbur, David Emory and I realized the other day that we have some serious teaching to do. Fortunately, the young’uns are eager to learn.”
The combined Ouray, Ridgway and Silverton squad for 2013 has but five seniors and four juniors. The bulk of the team is made up of freshmen (14 boys and girls) and sophomores (eight boys and girls).
Returning Ridgway High School senior Kyle Cotton took up where he left off flinging the discus at the state tournament last year, hurling the ancient, leaden Frisbee 148’ 0” for the team’s only first-place finish in Delta. The week before, in the season’s first meet, the Icicle Opener at Montrose High School, Cotton spun the disc 149’ 2”, to set a new personal and school record distance.
A versatile thrower, Cotton took eighth-place in Delta in the shot put, heaving the 12-pound ball 36’ 8”.
“Kyle Cotton is likely spinning his way to more school records,” Pearce commented, “and a hopeful position on the podium at the state meet.” (He finished 11th last year.)
Distaff thrower Marcina Sarmiento (RHS sophomore) set a new personal record in the discus with a throw of 71’ 7”, obliterating her old mark of 68’ 0” set in Montrose this year.
Also medaling at Delta was the girls’ 800m medley relay, in third place with a time of 2:11.99. That team includes Sarmiento, RHS junior Jasmin Braud, and RHS freshmen Haley Crozier and Holly Harrington.
The team scored two fourth-place medals. Ouray High School freshman Nate Fedel ran a personal record 11:59.89 in the 3200m. And the girls’ 4x400 (Braud, Crozier, Sarmiento and OHS freshman Eva Wister) ran a combined 4:51.84.
Pearce described Fedel and fellow distance runner Martin Torres (a freshman from Silverton) as “poised beyond their years.”
Also scoring team points in Delta was the boys’ 4x800 relay (Torres, Fedel, OHS sophomore Micah Smith, and RHS senior Weston Patton).
Holly Harrington scored in the 100m hurdles. And Ernesto Saldana (Silverton ninth-grader) scored eighth-place points in the 3200m run.
Eva Wister and Holly Harrington both set personal bests in the 100m dash.
All told the girls scored 12 points, for 11th place, while the boys scored 20 points, good enough for 10th place on the day.
Pearce said the coaches are looking forward to the return to the track of German exchange student Pia Falkowski, who was in Washington, D.C., last week on a school trip and missed the Delta meet. “She is kicking off the dust of the cross-country trails,” Pearce said, “and shifting to the more precise contours of the turns in the 800m and the 1600m.”
Overall, Pearce said, “This will be a fun group to spur on to great efforts, because they get along and accept the challenges of competition with a ‘together’ attitude.”
Next up for the tracksters is the Bulldog Invitational at Hotchkiss High School on Saturday, March 23.