Posted: Jan 17, 2013
Head coach Hedi Pinkerton, who enters into her second year with the program, is ready to defy expectations with this year’s team.
“The athletes have really worked hard in the off-season,” said Pinkerton. “They know that they have a chance to mold this program and leave an impression within the conference, and that has inspired them to get in the gym and get to work.”
On the men's side, the Pioneers return four upperclassmen, sophomore Ben Lyvers, juniors Ben Hoseus, Ryan Jennings and Mason Williams.
“These guys have really set a good example for our team,” Pinkerton said of her returners. “They were at the forefront of getting in the gym every day and going to work. They are going to be great leaders for the younger guys, and the rest of the squad.”
All of the returning upperclassmen will be competing in sprints for the Pioneers.
Amongst the new faces for the Transy men will be Brendan Bivens, Akrin Erol and Chris Saldana. Bivens and Saldana will both run middle distances for the 2013 campaign, while Erol will focus his efforts in the field with javelin and discus.
“These freshmen are really going to be athletes to watch,” Coach said of her newest additions. “They have the ability to come in and set records for us right off the bat, and will really be great additions to our team as a whole.”
On the women's side, the returners will be sophomores Nicole Coffman and Elizabeth Hardt, junior Alex Rand and seniors Laura Clark and Kelsey Meade.
“We’ve got some good leaders and some strong athletes returning to us this year,” commented Pinkerton. “These women have the potential to do big things this season, and really help our team to grow and develop.”
Of the returners, competing in middle distance will be Clark and Hardt. Only one upperclassman, Coffman, will race in sprints, while Carey, Meade and Rand will all focus on distance running.
Pinkerton and her staff were able to bring in five new runners to the team, with the first-years being Shelby Auxier, Darby Cooksey, Tori Lelback, Kathryn Raybound and Kara Sparks. The five will compete in a variety of events including sprints for Auxier, Cooksey and Raybound, middle distances for Lelbach and long distance for Sparks.
“These freshmen are going to be fun to watch develop,” said Pinkerton. “We have high hopes for all of them, and we know they can live up to our expectations.”
The coaching staff has set their sights high this season, and are excited to exceed expectations.
“Every year we have been able to improve and get better,” Pinkerton said. “This year is no different. We will really focus on improving from last year, and making ourselves a force to be reckoned with within the Heartland Conference.”