Lone Peak High School track team begins new season
Snow blew sideways outside as Head Coach Dave Brekke watched his track and field team warm up in the Lone Peak High gym on April 2. The week before, practices were in preparation for the first track meet on April 3 in Bozeman, but weather moved in and the meet was cancelled.
This is Brekke’s third season with the LPH track and field team, and with a crew of 20 young athletes, doubling and even quadrupling the number of participants from past years, he is excited for what’s ahead. He said the returning athletes this year have been showing the newcomers the ropes, getting them excited about the season.
“Things just go so much easier when you have more teammates,” he said, watching as the kids joked with each other while awaiting their turn to run warmups across the gym. “It makes them all a little more competitive. They’re just working harder, and it’s easier to get them motivated.”
Junior Brooke Botha has been involved in track since her freshman year. The lanky athlete has got a hand in shotput, discus and javelin.
“I tried it out, and I loved it,” Botha said of track and field. “I like being part of a team, but also being able to do your own thing. And just relying on that for the success of your career is pretty cool.”
Botha was a little disappointed about the Bozeman meet being cancelled. “But I’m also kind of glad it’s cancelled because we haven’t been able to practice outside, and I need to be out there in order to practice some of my events,” she said.
After singing the praises of his team, Brekke was quick to note he is equally pleased with his extremely qualified assistant coaches. He said during his two years coaching at Bozeman High, he had great coaches, “But these really excel,” he said. “They do very well with the students, they establish a rapport with them very easily and quickly, and they know what they’re doing. They’re good at it.”
That experience includes Coach Rich Jorgenson’s track success at Concordia College, Coach Lucas Westblade’s award-winning track career in Illinois, and even a coach who competed in a Super Bowl, Tom Newberry.
Like most Class-C schools, LPH does not have home meets since the school does not have approved surfaces to compete on. Their next and first meet of the season will take place at Belgrade High starting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, April 14.