BY JENNIFFER WARDELL
Clipper Staff Writer
WOODS CROSS — These athletes have wings on their feet.
The Woods Cross High track teams, both defending region champions, are heading into the 2013 season with speed on their side.
Several members of the boys’ team are in the state’s all-time top 10 lists for running speeds. The girls’ team includes returning members from last year’s state championship-winning 4x400-meter relay team.
“We’re excited about the potential of this year’s team,” said co-head coach Sam Wood. “We have a great group of dedicated, focused athletes.”
Several members of this year’s team took part in the indoor track season. Derek Lord won first place in the 60-meter sprint at the BYU Invitational in January. Cam Dopp won first place in the 60-meter hurdles at the UHSTCA Invitational Championships in February, and Sean Barton took second in the 60-meter sprint at the same event.
All three have times in the state’s top 10 lists, and Lord has already committed to run for BYU on a scholarship.
“With our sprint core, especially our boys sprint core, we could be really dangerous,” said Wood.
Another top 10 runner, Jacapo Spano, took first in the 200-meter dash at the UHSTCA event. A foreign exchange student, Spano was a top junior athlete in Italy, Wood said.
“I don’t know how we got him,” he said. “It’s one of those weird, bizarre things, but we’ll take it.”
Among the girls, Jill Richardson and Jacque Steckler are returning from last year’s championship-winning 4x400-meter relay team.
Other runners tend to show their strength in longer distances. Several runners were finalists in the 1600-meter run at the recent Simplot games.
The teens will take their successes into this year’s outdoor track season. The first meet of the year will be held Friday and Saturday, March 22-23, in St. George. The first Davis County meet is set for this coming Tuesday and Wednesday, March 26-27.
“We’ll need to work hard and stay healthy and focused,” said Wood. “If we do, we have a chance to be real contenders for both region and state.”