Baldwin to host invitational at Wellsville Friday
For the first time in many years, the Baldwin High School track teams will open their seasons with a meet outside of Baldwin City, when the Bulldogs host the Baldwin Invitational in Wellsville Friday.
BHS will be hosting the meet in Wellsville this year, because of construction at Baker University's Liston Stadium this spring.
"I don't look at it as a home meet," BHS girls' track coach Ted Zuzzio said. "I see it as an away meet. There are 13 schools and it's going to be a good meet. Wellsville has a nice track, so we are fortunate to host it on a nice facility."
Since last week was spring break for BHS, the Bulldogs have only had four straight days of practice before Friday's meet.
"We are getting back from spring break, trying to get everybody back in shape and in the swing of things," BHS boys' track coach Mike Spielman said. "We are a little sore and hurting right now, but we will be OK."
Despite the lack of practice time, both coaches believe their teams are ready to begin competing.
"We are as ready as we can be," Spielman said. "We come back and only have four days of practice before a meet. It's just a chance to see where everybody is at."
Zuzzio said the girls are ready for the meets to start, so they can start their quest for success in May.
"We are ready to get started and build every week," Zuzzio said. "We are aiming toward league and state. We've got to start somewhere and we start Friday."
Spielman agreed about the team's goal being the final meets of the season and not the first one.
"Early in the year, team scores aren't that big of a deal," Spielman said. "You want to try and win the ones at the end of the year. We try not to do too much or get anybody hurt."
Neither coach was sure how their team will perform Friday.
"This year is sort of a wait and see," Zuzzio said. "We've got a lot of nice kids. We are just eager to see how the year goes, as far as placing."
Spielman believes the boys' team has a chance to score in many different events.
"We will have a little of everything," Spielman said. "We will be pretty balanced."
Since beginning practice in early March, both BHS teams have been shuffling athletes to and from Wellsville approximately twice a week to practice. The other days of the week are spent practicing around BHS.
Zuzzio said practice has been very different from past years, but the team keeps showing up to practice.
"Everyday is an adventure," Zuzzio said. "The kids are there every day. They are ready to get in better shape and start competing. We will open up Friday."
Throwers and other field event people have been able to practice at BHS. Spielman said the coaches have had to adjust a lot this year to allow everyone practice time.
"We are figuring out ways for some of the kids to be able to practice," Spielman said. "Hopefully we will be able to get a meet in Friday, so we can have an idea of where a good starting point is for most of the kids."
The meet Friday begins at 3:45 p.m. at Wellsville High School. The field events will be first, with the preliminary running events starting at 4:30 p.m. The finals will begin at 6 p.m.