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Sedona Red Rock High School’s 4x800 girls relay team finished sixth out of more than 100 schools to lead the Scorpions on Saturday, March 22, at the Chandler Rotary Elite Invitational.

Freshman Hannah Ringel practices throwing discus during a practice Thursday, March 20, at Sedona Red Rock High School. Ringel throws behind senior Gabby Simon, who finished seventh in the competition Saturday, March 22, at the Chandler Rotary Elite Invitational finals.

Seniors Krupa Bhakta and Natalie Cox teamed up with juniors Tia Myers and Sammie Cox to post a time of 10:18.46 in the relay.

“The girls were disappointed because they only improved on their time by a couple of seconds, but Krupa probably had the best race of her life,” Scorpions head track coach Harry Schneider said.

Natalie Cox also ran a five-and-a-half minute mile to finish eighth in the 1,600-meter competition, while senior Gabby Simon threw the discus 108 feet to pace the girls’ side of the competition at Chandler High School.

“She made the finals, which is great,” Schneider said. “She’s still learning the ‘spin,’ still looking for the big throw.”

Senior Travis Okie sprinted the 800-meter dash in just under two minutes to finish in seventh place under circumstances disappointing but understandable, Schneider said.

“He got beat up, pushed around, tripped around in a crowd of runners,” Schneider said. “Sometimes you get boxed in. It was just not what he wanted, but hey, you’re running with the best in the Southwest.”

Junior Andre Davis finished ninth in the 110-meter hurdles in just over 16 seconds and ran the 300-meter hurdles in just over 42 seconds to finish 10th.

“He probably had the best day of anyone,” Schneider said. “Some of the best runners in the nation were there, which can be intimidating, but then you realize, ‘Wow. That’s what it takes to be great.’

“There was a girl who ran the 400-meters in 54 seconds. A miler ran 4:06. Eight meet records were set.

“I try to get across to every kid, to be that successful, you’ve got to do extra.”

Senior Rachel Preschler also finished ninth in the triple jump with a distance of 31 feet, 32 inches. She, Okie and Natalie Cox will be among several Scorpions track athletes to try new competitions Friday, March 28, at the Peoria High School Invitational.

“Travis is going to run the 400-meters, maybe the mile,” Schneider said. “Natalie’s going to run the 3,200. She doesn’t want to do that, but that’s OK. She’s learning how to handle different coaches, and I’m a different coach.”


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