Barnesville track teams lack varsity experience
By SETH STASKEY
Times Leader Sports Editor
BARNESVILLE — It’s a similar story everywhere.
Both Mark Brown and Dylan Rogers like the make up of their girls and boys track teams.
But, both also realize that basically half of their rosters have never taken part in a varsity track meet after the 2020 season was wiped out due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have 20 of our 26 kids who have never been in a high school track meet,” Brown said of the Shamrock girls. “It will be interesting to see how the year off affects performances.”
Rogers, meanwhile, begins his 11th season with 75% of his team never entering a varsity invitational.
“We have a good number of first-year runners and throwers from freshmen to seniors,” Rodgers cautioned. “We have good numbers and regardless of their experience, they have been working hard and are ready to compete.”
The Shamrocks feature a senior class that measures only five. Leading the way is A.J. Detling, who will take part in the pole vault and hurdles.
He’s joined by Tal Johnson, Kyi Toohey and Luke Shultz, all of whom will be in the throwing events. Novah Pavell will be in the sprints and jumps.
The junior class is led by distance runner Tyler Jenkins in the 1600 and 3200 meter runs. Owyn Wise is a veteran in the sprints. Griffen Stephen will be one to watch in the pole vault, 400 and 800.
Avery Clouse (throws) and Orion Smith (sprints, long jump) are also going to be counted on.
The balance of the junior class includes: Caiden Thornton (sprints), Ethan Leach (throws), Ethan Spangenburg (throws), Jonothon Carpenter (distance), Connor Jones (throws), Jacob Webb (distance), Mason Carpenter (sprints, pole vault), Arick Clark (throws) and Cayden Lough (sprints).
The sophomore contingent includes: Carter Steed (sprints), Jordon Smith (sprints), Quentin Leasure (throws), Brayden Galloway (sprints, pole vault), Cooper Bell (hurdles, jumps), Bryce Castle (400, 800), Tre Haney (distance), Logan Dodd (distance), Brock Burkhart (throws), Robby Nixon (distance), Connor Warrington (distance), Julian Becerra (400, 800), Vincent Phillips (distance) and Bryce Hall (sprints, long jump).
Only three freshmen — Brady Drake (distance), Jack Phillips (sprints) and Elye Wise (sprints, high jump) — are on the squad.
The Shamrocks female roster boasts 26 competitors and only six of those are in the upper two grades.
“I think our strengths will be in the distance, throws and the pole vault,” Brown said. “We’re very inexperienced in other events, so I don’t know what to expect yet.”
Junior Anna Yater returns in the throwing events. She was a regional placer in the discus as a freshman. Senior Grace Detling is a standout in both the low hurdles and pole vault, placing in the OVAC in both events.
Senior Alana Trigg is one to watch in the pole vault, hurdles and sprints as she returns to the team for the first time since 2018.
Senior Alexis Connor is new to the oval.
Juniors Emma Helmick and Jordyn Strous are solid in the distance contingent and they’ll be joined by Aubrey Johnson and freshman Marah Bethel. Johnson, Bethel and Helmick were All-OVAC and All-District performers in cross country.
Other sophomores on the roster are Haley Bell (sprints), Regan Campbell (throws), Britnee Cassidy (sprints), Kaylee Graham (middle distance), Hannah Leach (throws), Olivia Stephen (throws) and Mia Yee (sprints).
Freshmen looking to make an impact are Lauren Blon (middle distance), Alivia Campbell (sprints, hurdles, high jump), Taylor Crooks (throws, sprints), Zoey Hickenbottom (sprints), Cali Lee (distance), Chloe Levan (sprints), Kylie Moore (long jump, middle distance), Kailey Nugent (middle distance), Eden Steele (middle distance), Madison Winters (middle distance) and Ayla Yater (middle distance).