By Jerod Young • Jerod Young • 

Area track and field teams moving on

The boys will look a little different this year. A.J. Hedgecock is no longer anchoring the team as he is now a member of the Oregon State Beavers football program.

Hedgecock was the talk of 3A in last year’s state championships. He won three state championships in the 100-meter dash, discus and long jump.

Hedgecock was the discus state champion in his junior season and he won a state championship in the high jump in his sophomore season.

Dayton also loses senior standout Hayden Craig. Craig won the state championship in the shot put and finished second behind Hedgecock in the discus. While those two standouts have left the boys team, they have quality athletes returning to the program. Senior Luke Wildhaber returns after his eighth-place finish in the 800-meter dash and a ninth-place finish in the 110-meter hurdles. Micah Cisneros will return after a solid wrestling season to compete in the pole vault. Cisneros finished sixth at last year’s state championship. His teammate and fellow junior, Esteban Cruz, finished ninth in the event.

Julianne Benson makes her much-anticipated return to track and field after a successful 2012 state championship run. Benson won the javelin state title and led the 4x100-meter relay team to a fifth-place finish.

Benson finished eighth in the javelin her junior year, and her relay team finished eighth.

Sydney Mohler returns for her junior year and in a leadership role with Benson. Mohler impressed on the big stage at the state championships. She competed in the 100 hurdles and finished eighth.

The other standout for Dayton in last year’s state championship was junior Katrina Irvin. Irvin returns for her senior season in the pole vault. Irvin placed ninth in the event at the state championship.

Rain or shine, the track and field season is here. The Pirates are scheduled to compete at 9 a.m. Saturday at the HRV Learn by Doing Clinic at Hood River Valley High School.

Yamhill Carlton ready for season

The Yamhill-Carlton girls finished 14th at the 4A state championships with 18 points and the boys finished 24th with nine points. Two Tiger girls had fifth place finishes: Freshman Kaylie Boschma in the 300 hurdles, and Suzanne Van De Grift in the 400 relay.

Robby Sullivan finished second in the high jump on the boys side.

The Tigers show a lot of promise coming into the 2013 season because all of the athletes that competed and had top finishes for Yamhill-Carlton will return this season and should be a favorite in the Cowapa League.

The boys team will a few veterans but it looks like a young team that will have to build experience and could learn from the Tigers’ girls team.

The Tigers start their 2013 season at 2 p.m. March 21 at the Grizzly Bear Open in McMinnville.

Amity looks to improve

The Warrior boys placed 10th in last year’s 3A state championships with 26 points, and the Amity girls did not place. Amity had several top five finishes including senior Sergio Ulloa’s third-place finish in the long jump. He also finished fifth in the high jump.

The 4x100 relay team with Mauricio Duran, Riley Moore, Tyler Maples, and Sergio Ulloa finished fourth. Senior Trae Davis took fifth in the 300 hurdles and fifth in the 110 hurdles.

Amity competes in its first event March 21 at the WVL Icebreaker in Dayton.

Sheridan continues to build

The boys did not have representatives in the state championships last year but they did have girls that competed. Freshman Mackenzie Hall impressed with her 10th place finish in the 800 dash.

Senior Brianna Potter will return to compete in the shot put for the Spartans. Potter is coming off basketball season where she was the starting center for Sheridan.

Potter took seventh in the shot put event at last year’s state championship. The Spartans take part in a meet at 4:30 p.m. Thursday vs. Neah-Kah-Nie, Nestucca, and Santiam at Nestucca.

Willamina looks for new leaders

The Bulldog girls, specifically senior leader Chelsea Moser, had an impressive run at the 2012 state championship. Moser took second place in both the triple and high jump. Willamina will have to find a new standout to fill those positions.

Track and basketball star Brook Wilson took second in the javelin last year and should compete there again as a senior this year.

The Bulldogs 4x100 relay team finished fourth last year with Meagan Davis, Demi Prescott, Leticia Cozar, and Moser leading the team. Willamina gets its 2013 season started March 21 at Dayton at the West Valley League Icebreaker.

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