By Gerry Steele
The Baker track and field team will have a mixture of youth and numbers this season.
Baker coach Suzy Cole welcomed 75 athletes out to start the season, including two dozen returning players.
"We're very excited about our good numbers," Cole said.
"We feel like we have a lot of young kids with potential. We have some older boys coming out for the first time who should really help."
Cole said the Bulldogs will especially have depth in the sprints and jumps, but will be slim in the hurdles and distance events.
"Hopefully as we start getting to know some of the younger athletes we can disburse our talent throughout all events," Cole said.
"The energy and attitudes are very positive and energetic," Cole added. "We're looking for a great year."
Leading the returning performers are seniors Nate Baeth who ran the 800 at state a year ago, and Alli Ferdig who threw the shot at state last year.
Other returning performers are Tobin Brown (distance), Chris Conant and Shane Conley (sprints), Lance Dunn (middle distances, relays), Tiffani Fisher (throws), Rachel Freeman (hurdles), Celina Fuzi (long jump, sprints), Kalani Hauser (throws), Austin Jones (sprints, javelin), Keith Kramer (hurdles), Evan and Ian Krohn (distance), Michelle Lehman (hurdles, relay), Tanya O'Neal (high jump, 800), Erin Parker (hurdles), Summer Phillips (800, triple jump, relay), Maddie Richards (long and triple jumps), Rory Scilacci (sprints), Teancum Taylor (triple jump, long jump, pole vault), Trace Thamert (triple and long jumps), Carly Thamert (high jump, sprints), Jezi Wells (high jump, shot) and Amy Wong (sprints).
Among the newcomers are Ben Baxter (jumps), Zarom Bruce (throws), Porter Cline (sprints, javelin, pole vault) and Brandon Ellwanger (jumps).
Assistant coaches are Ray Uriarte and Tish Bloomer. Volunteer assistants are Jorden Osborn, Tim Greene and Laurel Calloway.
Baker will host the Greater Oregon League district meet in May.