The good news for Monarch is that half of this twosome is back this spring. The bad news is that half of it is not.
Year in and year out, a very large share of the best track and field to be found in Colorado spins up directly out of the Front Range League. After a bit of a lull last spring, this spring figures to ratchet back toward long-term norms.
League Teams: Boulder, Broomfield, Fairview, Fort Collins, Fossil Ridge, Greeley West, Horizon, Legacy, Loveland, Monarch, Mountain Range, Poudre, Rocky Mountain
Last Year's League Results: Fort Collins took this one, by a margin of roughly 25 points over Monarch. The rest of the league member schools were well back from the top two, with Fossil Ridge in third at just over 50 points behind Monarch. Monarch would go on the very nearly upend Fountain-Fort Carson for the 5A Boys crown. It was a most memorable state meet effort that came up just a hair short. Fort Collins, who won the league crown more on depth than on high-end talent, came in 6th with 35 points. Broomfield's 13 marked them as the only other league-member school to accumulate as many as 10 points at State. In terms of overall impact on the state meet scoring, 2017 was not a top-shelf kind of year for the Front Range League.
Key Athletes Lost to Graduation:
Boulder: Peter Chopra, Sam Primozich, Sean Riedel, Gage Hornung, Luke Zacharias
Broomfield: Jalon Torres, Josh Schoep, Garrett Betty, Tobias Godwin
Fairview: Maxwell Ward, Greg Lund, Max Mueleman
Fort Collins: Michael Kadlick, Cameron Dimas, Andy Kline, Justen Olsen, Logan Broedner
Fossil Ridge: Jared Brannen, Dylan Ko, Kyle Biehl, Aaron Hargis
Greeley West: Jayden Martinez
Horizon: Cade Verkler
Legacy: Anthony Lyle, Braxton Hansen, Ethan Simmons
Loveland: Micheal Teesdale
Monarch: Nico Heineke-Magri, Isaac Green, Cayce Reese, Zach Litoff, Sean Gambone
Mountain Range: Jared Bertsch
Poudre: Garrett Ewing, Will Daknis, Austin Davis, Sid Bennett
Rocky Mountain: Chris Cathcart
Key Returning Athletes:
Boulder: Orion Pipersky, Caleb Hardy, David Fraser, Luke Regnier, Ryan Travis, Nick De Vangel, Dylan Rodgers, Spencer Clark
Broomfield: Michael Mooney, Joseph Carwin, Kaleb Foreman, Tino Martinez, Mitchell Gorman, Steven Croell, Caleb Kennedy
Fairview: Cole Bragstad, Max Carter-Kemp, Peter Kennedy, Matthew Gunther
Fort Collins: Joshua Krafsur, Micaylon Moore, James Gregory, Shay Wind, Steven Brewer-Baumann, Joseph Maguire, Clayton Castro, Hayden Riley, Jonathan Engle, Allam Bushara, Spencer Purnell
Fossil Ridge: Blair Durand, Donovan Murphree, Chase Elliott, Blake Hubert, Luke Brannen, Grant Schmidt, Matt Hubert, Zack Crane, Jacob Powell
Greeley West: Alex Valverde, Devan Leaf
Horizon: Gavin Glaza, Noah Cannon, Dadrian Paris, Brant Killmon, Kobe Small
Legacy: Ryan Lynch, Parker Lee, Sean Masucci
Loveland: Adam Stark, Alex Hershberger, Zac Witman, Zach Weinmaster, Noah Pangrac, Mason Adams, Jordyn Spencer, Kellis Ward
Monarch: Charlie Perry, William Dixon, Max Manson, Cole Rowan, Isaac Russo, Sean Gazarik, Mitchell Waters, Tyler Waters, Macklin Harrington
Mountain Range: Jacob Konarski, Michael Fenton, D'Angello Wright
Poudre: Landon Correll, Bryce Pietenpol, Bryan Martino, Garrett Nelson, John Houdeshell, Chris Andersen
Rocky Mountain: Alistair Dunnington, Noah Morrison, Stephen Santini, Ryan Bolander, Daxson Bush
Monarch took several key hits in the distance group and lost their key thrower to graduation. The Coyotes, though are still dangerous--just probably not as dangerous as last year. There just aren't many available means of replacing Isaac Green's 30 individual points at State last spring.
Though Fort Collins lost a few key guys to graduation, the pipeline is well established at FCHS. They should return this spring as league favorites and, if they stay healthy, should improve substantially on their State showing of last year. There are just too many ways for the Lambkins to hurt you for them not to surpass last year's 35 points.
Fossil Ridge and Loveland are next up on the list of what's coming back. A breakthrough year for either of these schools likely bumps them up to second. Overtaking Fort Collins, though, will be a tall order.
Broomfield is another outside threat to rise as high as second. Of late, though, the Eagles haven't boasted quite the same breadth of excellence as the program was once famous for. One big key to a return to prominence for Broomfield is scoring more points across the spectrum. Hurdles have been the most consistent event area of late--that needs to expand to more events.
The league is several big-time stars in the persons of Charlie Perry, Max Manson, Cole Rowan, Michael Moooney, Mitchell Gorman, and Zach Weinmaster. Expect a few more to develop over the course of the season. By the end of the season, this league should be better--on balance--than it was last year.