Girls’ indoor season used for preperation
Story By: Brandon Vickrey, Sports Editor
In the world of high school sports, the month of March often means some down time between the winter and spring seasons. At Portage High School, thanks to the field house facility, there is indoor track and field to help ease that transition from winter to spring. The girls track team, which is coming off a 3-4 season, will use the indoor season to prepare for the official start of the season, which starts next month.
Indoor events are similar to those held outdoors, but there are some slight tweaks.
“The main difference is the type of events. The sprints are a little shorter and many of the events are based on relay types of races as many of our early meets are relay-based,” girls varsity track and field coach John Arredondo said.
“I personally use the indoor season as training for the outdoor season. It’s a time to continue to get our fitness level up while mixing in some competition at the same time,” he continued.
The Indians will look to improve on their conference mark of 3-4 from last season. Arredondo expects Lake Central, Valparaiso and Crown Point to be three of the strongest teams in the Duneland Athletic Conference.
After having the opening meet against Merrillville postponed, the Indians started the season against Valparaiso on Tuesday. They will compete in the State Trials tomorrow at Purdue University, host Chesterton March 15 and battle in the State Finals on March 29.
For the first time, the schedule will include the DAC Indoor Finals. This meet will be at PHS on March 22. The opening meet of the regular season for the lady-Indians will be at home against Boone Grove and Wheeler on April 7.
Portage has a balance of returning, experienced athletes and newcomers this season. The Indians are hopeful that more athletes will qualify for the state finals in Bloomington this year.
“As a coach, I am tired of only taking Tori (Bliss) down to compete. I’d like to take a group of girls,” Arredondo said.
Bliss, the defending national champion and a Louisiana State University signee, can be penciled in for a repeat appearance in Bloomington in both the shot put and the discus. In addition, she is expected to step up as a team leader this season.
Other competitors to keep an eye on include Kristy Evans (jumper/sprinter), Katie Engel (pole vault) and Christina Del Turco (800). The distance team, which is made up of mostly members of the state-ranked cross country squad, will be a strength for the team this season.