CHS put on great show at state meet
Thanks to the hard work of the officials at Carson High and the plethora of volunteer help from the community, the school’s first-ever attempt at hosting the NIAA State Track & Field Championships was a smashing success.
Robert Maw, Carson head track coach, has made no bones about the fact that he’d like to see Carson become the permanent home for regional and state track in Northern Nevada. He was overjoyed by the response he’s received from local community members and other officials and coaches from around the state.
“This was the best state meet in my 28 years of working track and field in Nevada,” Gardnerville track official Anthony Davis told Maw in an e-mail.
“The Carson High staff did an amazing job as host and representing our state capital, Carson City should host the state track and field championships for many years in the future.”
Added Truckee’s Diana Yale, “I’d like to thank the staff, volunteers and sponsors at Carson for an outstanding meet. The facility is amazing, and you guys (at Carson) did an excellent and most impressive job managing a top-notch meet for Nevada.”
One of the most impressive statements came from the state office in Reno.
“The Carson High School administrative staff and track & field coaching core did an absolutely phenomenal job executing the monumental task of conducting our state track and field championships,” said Donnie Nelson, NIAA assistant commissioner. “It is my sincere hope they will be wanting, willing and able to host again in the near future.”
The CHS facility is considered by many to be the best in the entire state. It is the only nine-lane track in the state, and the jumps and throws areas are off the track, making it a safer venue than Damonte Ranch. The pole vault and high jump are conducted in opposite end zones. Watching a meet at Carson isn’t like watching a three-ring circus like it is at other venues.
“I think it’s a great facility,” said Dayton coach Mike Paul. “We competed at Carson three times this year, and it was first-class every time. It is spectator friendly for the throwers and for the long and triple jumpers. I didn’t see any problems. It couldn’t have gone smoother.”
Maw said he has the support from school officials, including Bob Bateman, CHS athletic director.
“Coach Bateman said we have the best facility in the state, and we should host whenever it’s here,” Maw said. “As long as I’m the coach and we have the support, I want it here. The Damonte coach (Bill Harrison) told me that if we wanted to host (state) it was fine with him.”
That would be just fine with Arbor View coach Tyrel Cooper.
“The facility itself is awesome,” Cooper said. “I liked the way the jumps (and throws) were separated out. I think it was great the way the city came together to run the meet. Whenever the meet is in the north I’d rather see it at Carson, and I expressed that to coach Maw and Donnie (Nelson). I’d like to see the schedule changed so we start at 12 or 1 on Friday so the kids can get a good night’s sleep before coming back on Saturday morning.”
Cooper said his reasoning is Clark County officials always put the teams up in Reno. The Vegas schools aren’t able to make their own arrangements, thus Vegas schools are faced with a 40-minute ride home at 11 p.m. and then must be back as early as 8 a.m. on Saturday. If Friday’s meet could be pushed to noon or 1 it would better, Cooper said.
The only negative thing brought to Maw’s attention, and it was minor, was there could have been higher bleachers by the jumping pit. The bleachers there are just five or six rows, and there were always spectators lining the runway who blocked out fans sitting in the lower rows of the bleachers.
“I thought the higher bleachers would be great for watching (Randall) Cunningham in the high jump,” Maw said. “Putting higher bleachers by the jumping area is a simple fix. We told the coaches in the coaches meeting that we wanted feedback, both good and bad, from them.”
Cooper said he doesn’t believe the Vegas-area coaches would ever agree to have state track in the north every year.
“I don’t see our coaches wanting to come here every year,” Cooper said. “It’s a mind set. We want to have it in Vegas every other year.”
A total of 16 state-meet records were set among the four divisions, and 35 stadium records were broken. In some events as many as three participants set stadium records.
The biggest controversy on the track came in the boys’ 3200-meter relay when Centennial was disqualified for a lane violation.
“There were a lot of disqualifications,” Paul said. “Some of them you rarely see called. Sometimes at dual meets you don’t have enough officials to cover zones.”