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EPC track teams begin season this week

Both Elmwood /Plum City prep co-op boys’ and girls’ track teams have a good number of athletes and many of them returning letter winners. But in regards to their potential for the 2014 season, coach Sue Thompson believes it could come down to the team’s freshmen.

“We have the depth that good teams track and field teams usually have but right now we have events we’re having trouble filling from an experience standpoint on both the boys and girls teams,” Thompson said. “We have a lot of freshmen on both teams and if they can help complete us in those events, we can have successful seasons.”

 The EPC girls finished fourth in last year’s Dunn-St. Croix Conference meet, fourth in the regional and sixth in the sectional meet. Returning letter winners from that team include 800-meter run sectional champion senior Elaina Danzinger along with fellow senior state qualifier Sarah Gilles in the hurdles. Also back is junior Kaitlyn Lee of the state qualifying 1600-meter relay team, sophomore Libby Feuker, junior pole vaulter Jillian Holt and senior distance runner Amber Osteen.

However, EPC’s girls lost graduated seniors like D-SC champion Marah Boyer, Heather Von Holtum and Jessica Olson and sophomore Cheyanne Catura is playing softball this spring. The development of younger athletes like Feuker and Josie Tiffany and Kylee Sabelko will go a long way to filling open spots on the relay teams and other running and jumping events.

“I think we have the potential to put together 4x400 and 4x800 relays teams but its depends on their development.” Thompson said.

Thompson was more certain the boys’ team would certainly improve from its eighth place finish in the conference meet, fifth place showing at regionals (out of nine teams) and ninth place finish at sectionals.

While the team lost seniors like Kyle Webb and Seth Jones, who helped to lead EPC to a sectional title in the 1600-meter relay, along with Josh Fenter to graduation and junior Alex Boyer to baseball, they return letter winners like sophomores Hunter Schoengarth, Hogan Kernstock and Andrew Gilles, juniors Peter Fenter, Nick Bechel, Tristan Bagley and seniors Trevor Traynor, Zak Joyce, Roger Connell and Mark Anderson.   

“Even though we have to replace Kyle and Seth we still have a good core of middle distance runners in the 400 and 800 and some good distance runners as well,” Thompson said. “I think Trevor and Nick are going to do a very good job in the throwing events. We have a chance replicating our success in the 1600 relay too.”

EPC’s roster on the boys’ team will be boosted by the presence of junior Levi Wolf, who will take part in the jumping events as he can along with playing baseball.

EPC’s first meet is this afternoon at UW-Stout’s Johnson Fieldhouse in Menomonie. They will be back in Menomonie this weekend for the Northern Badger Invitational.