Janesville Parker boys track and field young, talented
The longtime Janesville Parker boys track and field coach still believes the best way to crown the Big Eight Conference champion is through dual meets. Not with a season-ending conference meet.
But with only six of the nine Big Eight schools on Parker’s dual-meet schedule, the Vikings will have to wait until the conference meet to see how they stack up against the rest of the league.
“You don’t really have a litmus test on what everybody’s got because you don’t compete against everybody,” Dye said. “I think, based on what they’ve got coming back, that La Follette and West would have the two best teams. But we don’t have West on our schedule.
“I still think the best way to do it is to bang heads with everybody. And if you’re not going to have a dual-meet champion, why have any dual meets at all.”
The Vikings are young with only seven seniors out, but there is plenty of talent up and down the roster.
Parker appears to be strongest in the sprints and relays. Seniors Ryan Shelton and Cody Speaker will anchor the sprints, along with juniors Justin Shelton, Aaron Ackerman and Neil Corrigan, along with sophomore Adam Vesterfelt.
The 400 and 800 runs will feature sophomores Brad Money and Jon Presti, juniors Nick Munger, Dan Treinen, Matt Simon, and Javier Gonzalez.
“I’ve been doing this a long time, and this is the first year where we’ve been able to be outdoors every day for four weeks,” Dye said. “That puts us ahead of the curve as far as being able to get things done in a normal environment and not indoors.
“Our goal is to get our kids ready to contribute in as many events as they can. That’s why dual meets used to be so important.”
Munger, Simon, senior Ryan Riley and junior Markus Murdy will handle the middle distances, while juniors David Tyler and Colin Burkheimer, and sophomore Kyle Amundson are slated for the 1,600 and 3,200.
Dye thinks he has four quality hurdlers in senior Lucas Comstock, along with junior Austin Lloyd, and sophomores Erik Albeck and Shawn Bohler.
Bohler and Lloyd also will compete in the high jump, with Ryan Shelton, Justin Shelton and Vesterfelt handling the long jump and triple jump duties.
Speaker returns as one of the top pole vaulters in the conference. He has a personal best of 14 feet, and will be joined by seniors Travis Rucinski and Brandon Zeilinger, as well as Ackerman.
Senior Calvin Nauer and junior Cody Colson are the top returnees in the shot put and discus, while sophomores Max Monson and Trever Steinke, along with junior Nate Moench will also compete in both events.
“As usual, our conference has some special athletes,” Dye said. “We just want to continue to work hard, improve each and every day, and stay healthy.”
Parker’s schedule, with home meets at Monterey Stadium:
APRIL: 13—Madison La Follette, 4:30 p.m.; 21—At Madison Memorial, 4:30 p.m.; 24—At Hononegah Relays, 10 a.m.; 27—Sun Prairie, 4:30 p.m.; 30—At Cougar Relays (Monterey), 4 p.m.
MAY: 4—At Verona, 4:30 p.m.; 7—At Spartan Invitational (Mansfield), 4 p.m.; 11—Beloit Memorial and Janesville Craig, 4:30 p.m.; 14—Parker Invitational, 4:30 p.m.; 18—At Big Eight Conference Meet (Mansfield), 3:45 p.m.