FREDERICKTOWN — Will Hartley has his hands full as the Fredericktown High School boys track coach, but that is good news. With the popularity of track this spring, depth is the Freddies’ greatest strength.
“We have good depth in most of the events,” said Hartley. “We have a strong senior class, a strong sophomore group with a lot of numbers.”
With a pair of Mid-Buckeye Conference championships in their past, the Freddies’ seniors are ready to show the way this spring.
“They were second last year,” said Hartley. “This year, they’re looking to get it back.”
The Freddies will be stronger in the speed events with sprinters Brennan Goeppinger (a senior) and junior Nick Clippinger.
“They’re pretty decent sprinters,” said Hartley. “They’re more like workhorse sprinters. They’re not real flashy guys, but they are going to get the job done. They will get a lot of seconds and thirds throughout the year.”
Sophomore Garrett Gatton is a very talented hurdler.
“He shows a lot of promise,” said Hartley. “He continues to get better and better as he matures.”
Isaac Potes, All-Ohio in cross country last fall, is expected to lead a very talented group of distance runners.
“Isaac is a key part of the success of the team and how far we are going to go,” said Hartley. “He is able to give us a lot of points in the distance events.”
With distance coach Bob Geiger’s help, other members of the Freddies’ state qualifying cross country team will compliment Potes and make Fredericktown a powerful force in the all of the distance and relay events.
“Junior Delaney McGuire has been running real well,” said Hartley. “Jimmy Shinaberry is a real tough runner.”
Sophomore Sean Kennedy is going to add even more depth.
“He’s coming on,” said Hartley. “He will be a big help on the distance events and the 4x800 relay.”
Hartley is balancing Geiger by acting as speed coach.
It’s not just about running. The Freddies will be competitive in the field events as well.
“Nathan Cubbage is a 10th-grader, who has already gone six feet in the high jump,” said Hartley. “He’s turning out to be a pretty good 400 runner for us as well. He went 53.8 in the 400 already. He took third place this past weekend at Ridgedale and that is usually a very competitive meet.”
Not only do the Freddies have the numbers, they also have versatility making them even deeper in all events. Junior John Gallagher is another hurdler and high jumper. Gary Gregg went to regionals last year as a pole vaulter. He can double as a sprinter. Shinaberry also went to the regionals as a pole vaulter.
The Freddies have their share of throwers. Sophomore Dakota Griffin, junior Cody Mann, sophomore Nick Stacy and Goeppinger are competing for the shot put and discus. Goeppinger may be the top Freddie in the discus as well as the top sprinter. Goeppinger could anchor the sprint relays as well.
“Seniors Gavin Grogg and Nick Testa are sprint guys that help out in the sprint relays,” said Hartley. “We’ve got nice facilities and great support from parents and administration and that’s why the numbers are up. That gives us a lot of options and creates a pretty competitive environment.”