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Large Scottsbluff team returns strong experience
April 08, 2016 Jerry Purvis   

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The Scottsbluff boys’ track team is returning three distance runners as the team plans to make another strong showing for the 2016 season.

“We have some returning letter winners, but not necessarily with state meet experience,” said Coach Jim Barker. “Outside of Matthew Holloway, who qualified for state last year in the high hurdles, we have three boys who qualified for state distance events.”

Junior Josh Hergenreder has been a standout long distance runner who also finished third last fall in the state Cross Country meet. Senior Collin Maag is also back in the 800 meter event and Josh Hergenreder’s twin brother Noah is also a solid letter-winning distance runner for the Bearcats.

Barker said the team also returns a solid group of throwers, led by junior Isaac DeLosSantos. He just missed qualifying for state last year, but has greatly improved since last season.

“We lost some really solid graduates from last year, especially on the boys’ side,” Barker said. “We’re reloading and rebuilding, and I think our boys will improve with time. We don’t have the depth as we do on the girls’ team.”

Barker added that every meet they have on the schedule should be a quality meet. “We always point to having our best meets at the end of the year,” he said. “In the past, we always seem to have our best performances at the state meet.”

The Scottsbluff girls also return a large team of almost 50, including six state qualifiers, including Chesney Walker, in the hurdles event. As a sophomore, Walker had what Barker called a “killer year.” However, she was sidelined last season due to a stress fracture.

Also qualifying were Whitney Riesen and Shayleigh James, who compete on the Cross Country team in the fall. “We’re just as strong or stronger this year in the distance and hurdles events,” Barker said. “We’re building on the last season for the girls and should be a much improved team. We have almost 10 more girls on the team as the boys.”
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