Oak Creek Soroco High School track and field coach David Bruner thinks today's track meet in Moffat County sets up well for his team to pre-qualify several athletes for the state meet.
With larger schools filling out most of the 17-team field, Bruner said his athletes will be pushed to put up some of their best times of the year.
"It's a state pre-qualifier," Bruner said, noting the warm weather in the forecast could make for a fast track. "We're going to go hoping to click out our fastest time of the years."
Bruner said several individuals and relay teams have a chance to qualify for state. Specifically sophomore Sarajane Rossi in the 800-meter run and the girls' 4-by-200, 4-by-400 and sprint medley relay teams. Bruner said he's also looking for the boys team to improve times in the 4-by-200 and 4-by-400-meter relays.
"It's a big meet so you just try to do the best you can," said Johnny DeCosta, who competes for the boys relay teams. "We'll see how we stack up against some of bigger teams."
While the meet will feature mostly bigger schools, several teams Soroco will see at regionals - including Meeker, West Grand, Rangely, Hayden and Grand Valley - will be at today's meet.
Bruner said it should give him a good idea of where the Rams stand.
"I think we're in the top 5 in all of our relays, both boys and girls," he said. "I guess my goal is to go out and be in top 3 because that gets you to state. At regionals, I want to win three of the relays in the girls and one in the boys. Right now, I think it's a realistic goal."
While Bruner is confident his team will be well represented, he said the Rams won't be at full strength heading into the meet.
With the flu going around and several Ram athletes battling bronchitis, Bruner said today's team scores may not be in line with Soroco's actual ability.
Nevertheless, Bruner said today's meet should set a solid foundation as Soroco approaches the final three weeks of its season.
"It's a great meet to go to," he said. "There are 17 teams in our region and 17 teams there. It should be a good indicator for us."