GHS state qualifiers will push Bluebirds? pace

These returning letter-winners and seniors will form the nucleus of the Goessel track and field team this season: back row (from left), Chase Flaming, Olivia Duerksen, Zach Wiens, Leighton Wagner, Jacob Rymill, Erin Brubaker, Jennifer Meysing; front row, Josh Schmidt, Miguel Guerrero, Shelbi Stultz, Aleena Cook, Rachel Manis.  Janae Rempel / Free Press
These returning letter-winners and seniors will form the nucleus of the Goessel track and field team this season: back row (from left), Chase Flaming, Olivia Duerksen, Zach Wiens, Leighton Wagner, Jacob Rymill, Erin Brubaker, Jennifer Meysing; front row, Josh Schmidt, Miguel Guerrero, Shelbi Stultz, Aleena Cook, Rachel Manis. Janae Rempel / Free Press

The Goessel track and field team, which returns a number of state qualifiers and letter-winners, will look to build on last season?s successes under the direction of eighth-year coach Curtis Guhr.

The Bluebird girls will look to defend last season?s Wheat State League title with the help of four returning state qualifiers.

Three members of Goessel?s state-qualifying 4×100 relay return: junior Aleena Cook, and sophomores Olivia Duerksen and Shelbi Stultz. Duerksen was also part of the state-qualifying 4×400 with returning senior Erin Brubaker. Brubaker also qualified for state in the 300 hurdles.

Sophomore Jennifer Meysing is a returning letter-winner, and Guhr said he expects good things from a number of other younger athletes on the roster. Individual events will be a strength of the girls? team.

?With bigger numbers this year, we will also be looking to put several relays together that should compete well,? Guhr said. ?With four returning state qualifiers, several letter-winners, and some new faces, we are looking for the girls to have another good year.?

The Bluebird boys, meanwhile, will try to improve upon their third-place league finish last year. These returning letter-winners will lead the charge: juniors Zach Wiens, Chase Flaming and Leighton Wagner, and sophomores Josh Schmidt and Miguel Guerrero.

?With several returning letter-winners, we will be looking for these guys to step up and lead the team this year,? Guhr said. ?Small numbers for the boys will make the individual events a key.?

Guhr said the boys will most likely rely on the hurdles and sprints for a majority of their points this season, but Guhr sees scoring opportunities in the distance races and field events as well.

Goessel will open its season by hosting a Central Kansas Track League Quint at 4:30 p.m. April 7.