PCHS Track & Field: Miners loaded with talent this season
March 23, 2012
It’s that time of the year again; the time when the race gun cracks, when athletes soar over hurdles and a thrower launches a javelin into the sky.
The Park City High School Track & Field Team is back to business as the Miners travel to St. George this weekend for their first big meet of the 2012 season.
Head coach Jeff Wyant said he’s eager to see his team get going and added that both the girls and boys teams are very talented and have potential to make some noise in 3A this year.
"It looks great," he said. "We’ve got a good sprint corps for the first time in a long time, so we’re kind of hoping they’ll come together and do some big things for us. The boys’ team is pretty well-rounded in all running events, so hopefully the sprinters can add to that. As for the girls’ team, that is more of an all-around team."
Among the Miners’ plethora of talent is notably junior thrower Megan Glasmann, the defending 3A state champion in girls’ javelin and discus. Glasmann will be joined in the varsity ranks this year by younger sister Chrissy, who is a freshman and a fellow thrower.
While the elder Glasmann said she’s more than ready for the season to get going, she said she must work her way back into top form after suffering a severe concussion and a broken jaw in late November as a member of the PCHS girls’ basketball team. During her recovery she contracted pneumonia, so she knows it’ll be a battle to reach her fitness level of this time last year.
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"I’ve been out about the last three to four months," she said. "I’m just trying to get back into it."
While the Miners did lose seniors Jake Adams, Lisa Palomaki, Chad Wing and many more to graduation, Wyant said he expects the group to continue moving forward.
Senior Aaron Green, a distance runner, concurred.
"When it comes to just running as a team and keeping it together, it’s pretty much the same," he said. "We’re pretty much a family. We’re a close group."
Green said knowing this will be his last hurrah at Park City High School does add a measure of importance to this season.
"I’ve given it my all just to get here," he said. "Our team looks really good. Everyone on our team has pushed it to the limit and it’s just going to take a whole team effort."
Ali Walker, a junior distance runner, will headline a strong group of girls’ runners this year, along with Emily Schmitt, Annie Orr, Sophie McDonald, Ellie Burton and Alyssa Snyder.
"It’s going well," she said. "I think the girls are going to be good this year. We have a couple girls struggling with injuries, but aside from that, I think we’re going to be really strong.
"We need to keep on improving."
No Park City athlete has the potential to score more crucial points than junior distance runner Ben Saarel, who is the two-time defending 3A state champion in boys’ cross country. After winning the 1600-meter race at the state track meet a year ago, the star was caught by surprise in the 3200-meter race, where he said he went out too fast, ending third.
"If you make a mistake, you’re in a bad place," he said. "In the two-mile last year, it was an interesting experience for me. The last two laps were just awful. Now, I’m really just trying to go out there and hammer down a pace."
Saarel said his focus for this track season has shifted to the 3200 race.
Asked if his goal entails a first-place finish in the 3200 at the state meet, Saarel said he can’t get too far ahead of himself once again.
"Not yet," he said. "I (just) want to run faster than last year."