Standing on the Shoulders of Giants: Rio Rico Girls

<p style="text-align: center;"> <span style="font-size:18px;"><strong>Peeking ahead to see what this spring holds....</strong></span></p>

Sophomore star Allie Schadler had a break out race last fall at NXR-SW beating Desert Vista's Dani Jones. People from across the nation will be watching her results this spring. Photo by Alan Versaw

Coach Steve Schadler does not let his girls team forget where they came from. He cites the fact that Arizona Milesplit has covered the extensively in the past as evidence of their success (which is true), and tells his athletes that they have an obligation to maintain that. "It would be good to be in contention in a lot of events, our goal is to bring up the total numbers of events we have at state," he explained about what to expect this year. As they look to expand their events at state from last year, one thing will remain the same. The Hawks will be led by Coach Schadler's daughter and distance star Allie Schadler.

Like with Carlos Villarreal on the guys side, the Hawks are led by a phenom distance runner....Allie Schadler. I am not sure there is an athlete in the state I can empathize more with than Allie. Having been relatively successful young, and a coach's kid at a relatively successful program, I understand the immense amount of pressure an athlete can put on themselves. Coach Schadler does as well. "My job is to make her not worry," explained Coach Schadler, "We just need to work on one season at a time and get what you get." This does not mean they aren't chasing high quality results there. "We need to be ready to get in there and fight," Schadler expounded, "if we do that, the best results will come."

Results should come for more than just Allie this spring. Despite losing Edith Arvizu to graduation, Halle deWitt, Victoria Valencia and Emily Rivadenayra should offer a strong 4x800m core with Allie as the anchor leg. Even though Emily is a 300H specialist she might also join Halle and Victoria, the team 400m ace, in a 4x400m relay. If Emily and Victoria run 4x800m, 300H or 400m and 4x400m throughout the year look for them really to excel at larger meets like state where there is some relief built into the schedule.

Distance may be the break and better of the Rio Rico program, but it is certainly not the only thing Coach Schadler spends working with his athletes on. "Sprinting is something you develop," Schadler expressed, "Just because you are fast in PE doesn't mean youre fast. It takes time to learn and develop in the 200m, just like in the 2 mile." Veronica Cruz, Maria Delgadillo and some of their soccer teammates look to form a good 4x100m and possibly put some sprinters in the open races come state. "This is one area where we can grow," Schadler said optimistically.

In the field events Maria (jumps) and Jenny Martinez (throws) have the best chance at qualifying for state for Rio Rico.