Prep Athlete of the Week: Natrona County Boys Track Team
CASPER, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - The Natrona boy’s track team came into the outdoor season with momentum on their side. For their first time, they won the indoor track state title in the winter season, and the only thing on their mind was to take it all with the outdoor state title up next.
After the state meet, they met their goal and won the 4A boys outdoor state title, and they had some athletes who took first in their events.
Luke Spencer, Brett Gifford, Nomar Gonzalez, and Bridger Anderson: 4A 4 x 100 Relay State Champions
Natrona had a mix of athletes who won individual events and team events. The 4x100 Meter Relay team was one of those teams that claimed first a the state meet. One of the runners on that relay team, Luke Spencer, knew how excited him and the team was going into the relay.
He said, “I was pumped. Everyone else, we were all pumped honestly, we went into that race wanting to win and we came out with the dub.”
As Luke said, they finished with a time of 42.90 seconds, and that gave them the event at the state meet.
Jackson Dutcher: 4A 800 M Run and 1600 M Run State Champion
Jackson came into this year with his mind focused on track. He gave up basketball in order to join the indoor track team this winter, and that resulted in a state title for indoor track.
Going into the state meet, he acknowledged that his team came into it not at 100%. He said, “we had a lot of injuries on the team, and I knew to win state we had to have a lot go right, and have more go right than go wrong I guess. And the first day, a lot of things didn’t really go our way, and so for me personally, that kind of lit a fire under me and it led to some of our performances later on.”
That was the fire he needed, as he went on to start day two with a much needed win in the 800 meter run with a final time of 1:54.08. This started to give him more confidence throughout the state meet and led to the 4A 1600 meter run state title.
He added, “I think a lot about running and winning races especially has to do with confidence, and the 800 gave me a lot of confidence going into the 1600 cause you have to believe that you can.”
Mason Weickum: 4A 110 M Hurdles State Champion
Some of the Mustangs came into this one not at their full strength, and one of those was defending 110 meter hurdles state champion Mason Weickum. He tweaked his hamstring a bit at regionals, but it really flared up during the preliminaries.
After scratching the other races he was supposed to run, he had to decide if he was even going to run the 110 meter hurdles.
He said he decided, “That exact morning. So it felt pretty good, I mean it obviously didn’t feel the best, but I was like ‘we need the team points so screw it. I’m gonna go out there and run the best I can even if it gets me dead last.’”
He did quite the opposite of getting dead last, as he finished in first with a time of 14.66 seconds to land his second state title in the 110 meter hurdles.
Mason talked about what got him through the race, saying, “Mindset. Just, try to ignore the pain and... I don’t know... Just I felt bad if I let my team mates down if I didn’t run anything that day.”
Natrona also won the 4x800 meter relay race as well, and that team included Jack Diaz, Tristan Enders, Jameson Munari, and Jackson Dutcher.
With both the indoor and outdoor state track titles, the Natrona County Boys Track team declared the 2022-23 season theirs.
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