As track and field season gets underway, Orange Lutheran’s team is looking to build upon last year’s successful campaign.
In 2018, several of the program’s athletes qualified for both CIF-SS Division 3 prelims and finals, and of the 17 seniors who graduated last spring, seven are running collegiately this year, with four of those runners competing for NCAA Division 1 schools.
“As a first-year head coach last year, it was a great season because all the kids bought in to what it takes to be successful,” says OLu track and field head coach, Marvin Davis.
This year’s squad includes nearly 130 athletes, many of whom are returners in their respective disciplines. The group also has increased recruitment from across other sports including football, soccer and volleyball, adding depth to each event.
Despite the challenge of managing a large number of athletes across multiple events, Davis has been working with a majority of the Lancers in an off-season program since September and feels they are “dialed in” and ready to go.
“This is the most focused group I’ve seen in all my years of coaching,” says Davis. “In team meetings, they are engaged and excited for the season.”
On the boys side, the departing seniors left their mark by mentoring the younger athletes, and that group is now ready to embrace the role and lead the way.
Standouts include senior sprinter Kyle McCray, a 2018 CIF finalist and likely one of the best sprinters in Orange County. He will be joined by fellow senior sprinter Jacob DeWitt and junior high jumper Ryan Bentley.
The girls team will be led by returning junior thrower Emily O, who competed in the 2018 Masters meet in the discus, and senior sprinters Kaden Moser, Victoria Webb and Catherine Wuckert.
“This is probably one of the best senior classes I’ve ever coached,” says Davis. “Those three girls have set the tone for the rest of the team.”
With a tremendous amount of depth across the disciplines and a goal of getting as many athletes into CIF finals as possible, Davis feels the girls squad could have a shot at a CIF title.
“From the girls side,” says Davis, “I honestly feel this could be the best girls (track and field) team in the school’s history.”