2013 Spring Preview: Smallidge, Gutierrez to lead the way for the Park boys track and field team
Despite saying goodbye to two of the best track athletes in Park High School history, there's still plenty to keep an eye on with the Park boys track and field team.
Last year was a historic one for the Wolfpack. Led by 2012 graduates R.J. Alowonle and D'Monte Farley, Park took second in the state, while Alowonle won four state championship titles individually. Alowonle and Farley are both currently running track at the University of North Carolina and the University of North Dakota, respectively.
"We have to redo what has worked for us the last three years," said Mike Moran, who is in his 20th year as Park boys track head coach. "Without R.J. and D'Monte we have to adjust to get maximum points. We have a lot of good young athletes. We have to see where they can fit for maximum potential."
Back to lead the way this spring are seniors Dylan Smallidge and Irving Gutierrez, two members of Park's state champion 400-meter relay team last year.
In addition to likely being the Wolfpack's top sprinter, Smallidge will also likely be the team's top jumper this season. He finished third in the section in the long jump and eighth in the triple jump at the section meet last year. Gutierrez is expected to compete with Smallidge in the sprints.
Other top returners to the Wolfpack include senior thrower Mike Broskoff and junior distance runner Evan Bonneson.
It's expected Forest Lake, Stillwater, White Bear Lake and Roseville will be the teams to beat in the Suburban East Conference this season. Rosemount and Apple Valley will likely be the teams to beat in Section 3AA.
The season is supposed to begin on Thursday, April 4, with an invitational at Hastings High School. The Wolfpack's next meet, beyond that, is Friday, April 12, at Hudson, Wis. However, it's all prelude to the SEC championship, which will be held May 21 and 23 at East Ridge, and the Section 3AA meet, which is set for May 28 and 30 at the St. Thomas University.