Track team seeks CIF success - The Desert Trail: News

Track team seeks CIF success

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Posted: Wednesday, February 14, 2018 7:37 am | Updated: 8:36 pm, Wed Feb 14, 2018.

TWENTYNINE PALMS — The Twentynine Palms High School track and field team began practicing Monday, Feb. 12, around the track at the school on Wildcat Way.

All the Wildcats with recent physicals took to the track to warm up after getting an initial set of instructions from assistant coach M.E. Wilson Sr., while coach Ronda Morton looked on.

Wilson cautioned the athletes that the team has some catching up to do if they want to be ready for the beginning of the spring season in March.

“We usually start a little earlier than this,” he said. “Everything we do here will count.

“Every time you miss that is more hard work for you,” he said.

He acknowledged that some people think he is a hard coach but added that this is not true.

“I am just trying to get you prepared,” he said. “I am not going to play pity pat for you.”

He urged everyone to have, among their supplies, plenty of water because dehydration is a very real danger.

“If you become a heat casualty out here that is it for you,” he said.

While athletes warmed up, Morton she is looking for the Wildcat boys team to win CIF and for the girls team to finish in the top three.

She added that she also wants to send as many athletes to CIF finals as possible.

“Our biggest challenge is always getting large numbers,” she said, adding that it is especially difficult to talk upper class members to take part in track and field.

Standouts this year will include Adam Mapuatuli, the team’s top thrower, who is looking to break the record for discus and improve at the shot put.

K.J. Magwood-Morton will be the team’s top returning sprinter who will look to take top honors in hurdles for the third year in a row.

Looking to lead the girls squad this year is Shaniah Newby who, last year, beat a 20-year-old record in the 200 meters.

Morton said she is also looking for a strong corps of young throwers to spark the team.

In the distance, sophomore Tucker Thornburg will be a returning star.

The team will begin its new season in early March, either at home on March 8 or on the road on March 10.

© 2018 Hi-Desert Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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