Richmond’s track teams open this week with expectations for contending in the conference and at the sectional, and with a schedule featuring all road meets.
Renovations to the track at Lyboult Field this spring mean no home meets for the Red Devils, who are scheduled to compete tonight at Anderson in their season opener.
“We’re looking forward to it,” RHS coach Ken Hittson said of the improvements to the Richmond track. “We’re going to try and balance the schedule out a little bit (next year). … When we do have the new track, we can run at home and let the fans come out and watch us.”
Hittson pointed to Red Devil throwers as a strength for both squads.
Junior Nate Trawick, a standout football player and wrestler, leads the Richmond boys. He’ll be joined in throwing events by seniors and fellow football players Bryson Yates and John Holland.
“I’m really excited about our throws this year,” Hittson said.
Sprinters include sophomore Dre Davis, senior James Mitchell and sophomore Austin Williams, with Jalen Sleet competing both in sprints and middle distance.
Jordan Spicer will both high jump and long jump for the Red Devils, with Jake Schamel and Chase Linville competing in the pole vault.
“Other than that, we’re going to have to figure out what else we have,” Hittson said, noting how difficult it has been to practice outside because of the weather.
Richmond will compete April 15 at Jay County, and then travel April 19 for the Marion Relays.
The Red Devil boys will compete April 21 at Mt. Vernon.
The North Central Conference meet is May 16 at Indiana Wesleyan.
“I would like to be in the top half of the NCC, to be very competitive,” Hittson said. “Sectional-wise, Connersville and Rushville are going to be strong again. I would like to be in the mix for the sectional championship as well.”
Richmond’s girls team features strong throwers and sprinters.
Senior Sarah Richards will help the Red Devils in the shot put, with fellow senior Deja Long providing depth in both the shot and discus.
Sprinters included sophomore Tahsiah Ferguson, juniors Lanaeya Hogg and Stormy Carlin and senior Chloe Conley.
“We’ve got some strengths in sprints this year,” Hittson said.
Sophomore Kinzie Martin and freshman Aubri Gibb look to help RHS in distance events, along with Hannah Crail, Lucia Pineda and Tiffany Chowning.
Martin advanced to the regional in cross country, but missed last year’s track season with an injury.
“Sprinting-wise and middle distance, I think we’ll be fairly strong, and I think our throwers will be strong as well,” Hittson said. “Hopefully we can put all the pieces together and be very competitive in the NCC and the sectional.”