Katie Benner was a reliable presence for Mountain View on their state champion 4x800 team last spring. Look for more of the same, and maybe an individual event or two, this spring. Colorado Track XC file photo by Alan Versaw.
No discussion of 4A girls would be even remotely close to complete without inclusion of Mountain View.
And, as is the case with most state title contending teams, the Mountain Lions have a lot of ways they can hurt you.
Maybe, but not assuredly, you'll notice that first in the distance events. Senior Riley Cooney and sophomore Lauren Offerman are both likely multiple event state placers. Throw in Rachel Franklin, Katie Benner, and Abby Stewart and you also have the makings of an outstanding 4x800 team. Maybe one a little--or a lot--like the one that won the event at last year's state meet. It's not difficult to figure out why Mountain View won state cross country this past fall; they are loaded in the distance events.
I don't know that four-eventing Cooney and Offerman is in view--but I don't know that it isn't, either. Best to have a plan for either scenario, I guess.
And, for the record, Cooney is definitely capable of going to 400 meters. It's more likely that happens with a relay than an individual event, but it's clearly within the realm of possible. For that matter, Offerman can probably drop nicely to 400 meters as well; Mountain View just hasn't shown that card yet.
Although a book could be written about Mountain View distance, we need to move to other events for the purposes of this article.
And what better place to start than Lauren Steege? Last year's freshman established herself as a very capable hurdler, even advancing to the state meet in the 100s. It's likely she's headed to state in both events this year, and possibly placing.
Joscelyn Wind is the top sprinter, but it's doubtful we see her at state in an individual sprint event. That would be because Wind is even more accomplished as a jumper than she is as a sprinter. How accomplished? 16-7.5, 35-9 and 5-4. Realistically, she places at state in all three events and still has time to run a relay.
Additional relay depth figures to come by way of the legs of Alana Reed and Yasmine Hernandez. Relays are a traditional point of strength for the Mountain Lions, though the baton produced only 16 points at state last year. It seems likely we'll see a bounce in that total this year.
But, Wind is far from the only jumper in the camp. Tensy Murra, Sammi Watson, Kira Minter each stand in the proud tradition of Mountain View jumping as well. Very few schools in the state jump better than Mountain View, and it's been that way for a while now.
Raquel Valdez is the top thrower and a threat to advance to state in both events. Julie Kufeld leads the returning pole vaulters after coming close to making it to state last year. Right now, 9-0 is her top vault, but more could be coming.
In a school this size, it's almost a given that some additional help comes from the freshman class. We just don't know yet what form that help takes.