Upperclassmen will fuel Marion track expectations


With upperclassmen competing in both the boys? and girls? divisions, the Marion High School track team will be in a strong position to compete with the top teams in the Mid-Central Activities Association.


?The seniors and returning letter-winners for the Marion Warrior track squad are: back row (from left), Jason Hett, Toby Brauer, Phillip Kleinheinz, Emmanuel Jackson, John Barr III, Daniel Goentzel, Justin Heidebrecht; (front row) Camille Christensen, Erin Richmond, Erin Carr, Danielle Cope, Kyle Hett, Ben Leppke, and Adam Regnier.


With three state medalists among the girls, coach Grant Thierolf is looking forward to having ?an outstanding group of individuals to work with.?

Erin Carr is coming off a season in which she claimed fifth in the 200 meters and eighth in the 100. Carr will also compete in the triple jump.

Danielle Cope will look to set the pace for the distance runners on the girls? side.

Cope medalled with a fifth-place 3,200-meter run at state in 2006, and also runs in the 1,600-meter event and the 4×800 relay.

Erin Richmond turned in a fourth-place pole vault performance at state, and throws javelin and discus.

All three are seniors.

?Carr, Richmond and Cope are seasoned performers,? Thierolf said. ?They have done very well for us the past three years.?

Sophomore Camille Christensen qualified for the state meet running the 1,600 and the 4×800.

Three other girls lettered for the Warriors last spring: Kimber Hardey (shot put, discus), Kalaya Jackson (long jump, 100), and Amanda Richmond (800, 4×800 relay).

Junior Lanna Carroll will throw the javelin, and three freshmen round out the squad:? Kayley Heerey (triple jump, javelin, 200 and 4×100 relay), Kristin Steinborn (javelin, 200, 4×400 and 4×100 relays), and Julia Zeiner (pole vault, long jump, 100-meter hurdles,? and 4×100 relay).

?We think we will be quite competitive in both divisions,? Thierolf said. ?We have some very good senior and junior leaders who will teach our sophomores and freshmen how to compete at the state level.?

State medalists Emmanuel Jackson, Jason Hett and Justin Heidebrecht will be counted on to provide much of that leadership.

Jackson claimed fourth in the long jump in addition to running the 100, 200 and 4×100. Jason Hett and Justin Heidebrecht combined with graduates Russell Ploutz and Gavin Moore to take seventh in the 4×800 event.

Hett and Heidebrecht will both run in the 4×800 and 4×400 again this season. Additionally, Hett will run the 800, and Heidebrecht will run the 1,600.

This year?s 4×800 will be rounded out by 2006 state qualifiers Daniel Goentzel and Adam Regnier. Goentzel also runs the 3,200, and Regnier, a sophomore, runs the 1,600 and 800.

Joining Hett and Heidebrecht for the 4×400 relay will be Brett Billings, a junior who qualified for state last season. Billings? other events are the 400-meter and 200-meter races.

The fourth member of the 4×400 unit will be Jake Czar?nowsky, who runs the 110-meter hurdles and 300-meter hurdles.

Ben Leppke and Kyle Hett are among the team?s senior leaders.?? Hett will run the 100, 200 and 4×100 in addition to the long jump, and Leppke will focus on triple jump and long jump.

Two other members of the team lettered last season:?? Austin Hager (javelin) and Luke Gordon (high jump).

Two sophomores and six freshmen round out the squad.

Brad Klenda is a sophomore specializing in pole vault, and Levi Carpenter will run in the 200 and 400 meter events.

The freshmen are: Drew Maddox (100, 200, 4×100), Tylor Neil (triple jump), Derek Riggs (shot put, discus), Doug Schroeder (shot put, discus), Eric Vogel (800) and Nick Klenda (discus, 300-meter hurdles).

?Our boys will be led by Kyle Hett, Emmanuel Jackson, Jason Hett and Daniel Goentzel,? Thierolf said. ?All of these young men have worked very hard for us and we look forward to supporting their efforts.

?We look to build through the year and to be at our best at the end of May,? he added.

The first meet of the season is slated for 4 p.m. Friday, April 13 at Smoky Valley.

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