15 teams of track-field athletes to participate in Homer Invite

Homer High’s girls track and field team placed second out of 14 schools at the Kenai Invitational, held April 22 and 23. The boys team placed 11 out of 12 teams, according to the scores posted on athletic.net. 

Track and field will host the Homer Invite on the Homer High School turf at 1 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday. 

Girls come in second at Kenai Invite

“There’s a lot of depth on the girls team this year, more so than any year in a while. We have strength in sprinting and distance, and we also have some people that are doing well in field events, including throwing,” said Homer track and field head coach Bill Steyer. “It was good for the girls team to see what their potential is this year. What’s revealing this year as opposed to other years is we’re not only competitive in the small school category, but we’re competitive in the large school category too.”

The Homer girls dominated in the sprints category, with two runners in the majority of the events. 

Kaylee Veldstra placed second in the girls 100-meter sprint, with a time of 12.83 seconds, followed by teammate Angie Cardoza in fifth with a time of 13.64 seconds. Ziza Shemet Pitcher and Alia Bales placed fourth and sixth in the 200-meter sprint. Pitcher ran the 200 in 28.52 seconds, while Bales’ time was 29.19. Pitcher also placed third in the 400-meter race with a time of 1 minute and 3.72 seconds. Sarah Wolf came in fifth in the 400-meter at 1 minute and 6.51 seconds. Aurora Waclawski came in fourth in the 800-meter with a time of 2 minutes and 29.97 seconds.

The girls also overcame the hurdles category with ease. Lauren Evarts placed first in the 100-meter hurdles and second in the 300-meter hurdles with times of 16.45 seconds and 50.37 seconds. Teammate Lauren Jones came in fifth in the 100-meter hurdles at 18.45 seconds.

Homer girls also placed high in the relay events, winning second place in the 400 and 3,200-meter relays and third place in the 800 and 1,600-meter relays.

Cheyenne Gillette came in fifth in the long jump event.

“We’re hoping to be one of the contenders. Of course Anchorage Christian will probably be the team to beat. They were at the meet last week and we performed better than they did, but they did not have their top athlete there. She is the best sprinter in the state in 3A and 4A,” Steyer said. “That’s something we fully realize.” 

For the boys, Jake Ritcher and Teddy Croft placed fifth in the 100-meter and 200-meter sprints, respectively. Ritcher ran the 100 in 11.72 seconds. Croft’s 200-meter time was 23.72 seconds. Luciano Fasulo came in sixth in the 800-meter relay at 2 minutes and 10.17 seconds. 

Homer Invite hosting hundreds

The Homer Invite will host 15 teams and more than 300 athletes, Steyer said. Homer will hold its first pentathlon at the meet.

“There’s going to be some really good performances,” Steyer said. “It could be a really cool thing for people in the community to check out.”

The girls pentathlon features sprint hurdles, high jump, long jump, shot put and the 800-meter run. The boys event will be high jump, long jump, discus, the 200-meter run, and the 1600-meter run.

Lauren Evarts, who competed in the pentathlon at the Big C meet, will represent the Homer girls team. Homer does not have any boys participating in pentathlon at this time.


Homer Invite Schedule 

Friday, April 29

1 p.m.: Field events/Pentathlon begins

2 p.m.: 3200-meter run

2:45 p.m.: Preliminaries: 100/110 hurdles; 100 and 400-meter runs; 300 hurdles; 800 and 200-meter runs. 

Saturday, April 30

10 a.m.: Field events/Pentathlon

Noon: Running events