SPRING ATHLETES OF YEAR: Bulldogs' Hartle races to top of track heap

Plenty of praise has been heaped on Centennial runner Nick Hartle since his historic junior season on the track came to an end.

Bulldogs coach Roy Sessions has a perspective most haven’t seen of Hartle.

“He’s a historian of the sport already,” Sessions said. “He tracks his competitors’ races. It’s about his desire to be a U.S. caliber runner and his training to follow up on that.”

Hartle set Class 4A state meet records this season in the 800-meter run in 1 minute, 49.91 seconds, and the 1,600 in 4:10.23. For his efforts, he has been named the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s 4A Boys Track and Field Athlete of the Year.

“I look at a lot of high school times and keep track in a notebook,” Hartle said. “I keep track of how I match up with other guys. I really push hard to get to those top spots.”

Hartle flashed his versatility at the state meet by taking fourth in the 400 in 49.27.

But the most memorable performance for Hartle came in the 1,600, when he edged Galena rival Bryan Jordan to break the state meet record of 4:13.8 set by Eldorado’s Andre Woods in 1982.

And yes, the historian of the sport knew the significance of what he had accomplished.

“It felt really special,” Hartle said. “It hurt so much and Bryan pushed me so hard, so that one was more satisfying than the 800. We’ve competed against each other in the past, and we both love and respect the sport.”

Hartle’s time in the 1,600 is the No. 21 high school outdoor mark in the nation this season, according to track website DyeStat.com.

His monster track season came on the heels of claiming the state cross country individual title last fall, winning the 3.1-mile race in 16:28 while helping lead the Bulldogs to a state team title.

“He’s got so much more to come,” Sessions said. “He loves what he’s doing. He’s one of the kids out there training who is going to put track in Las Vegas on the map.”
Spring Athletes of the Year
4A: Joey Gallo, Bishop Gorman. A junior infielder and pitcher, Gallo batted .471 with 25 home runs and 78 RBIs, and was 3-1 with a 1.12 ERA to lead the Gaels to their sixth straight state title.
3A/2A/1A: Jack LaMarca, Boulder City. A senior outfielder and pitcher, LaMarca hit .540 with 12 homers and 51 RBIs, and went 7-2 with a 3.02 ERA to lift the Eagles to the 3A state playoffs.
4A: Melissa McCormick, Palo Verde. A senior pitcher, McCormick went 23-8 with a 2.04 ERA and 222 strikeouts in 182 innings, and batted .598 with four home runs and 57 RBIs to lift the Panthers to their first state title. Signed with Towson.
3A/2A/1A: Karlee Koopman, Boulder City. A junior pitcher, Koopman was 25-5 with a 1.34 ERA and 165 strikeouts in 151 innings, and hit .456 with five homers and 33 RBIs to lead the Eagles to the 3A state playoffs.
Price Jarman, Bonanza. A senior middle blocker, Jarman had 517 kills, 108 blocks and 181 digs to lead the Bengals to a 23-0 season and their first state championship. Signed with Brigham Young.
4A: Taylor Montgomery, Foothill. A sophomore, Montgomery won the individual state title with a two-day total of 1-over-par 145 at Hidden Valley in Reno, a week after taking the Sunrise Region title at Mountain Falls in Pahrump. Also won the Southern Nevada Amateur at Legacy.
3A/2A: Ryan Baeza, Virgin Valley. A junior, Baeza carded a two-day total of 10-over 154 to take second in the 3A state meet at Hidden Valley in Reno.
3A/2A/1A: James Morgan, Boulder City. A junior, Morgan won the shot put at the 3A state meet with a 3A record throw of 59 feet, 1½ inches. Also took fifth in the discus at 128-11.
4A: Candice McFarland, Legacy. A senior, McFarland won state titles in the 100-meter hurdles in 14.35 seconds and the 300 hurdles in a state meet record 42.67. Signed with Washington State.
3A/2A/1A: Lauren Henry, The Meadows. A junior, Henry won 2A state titles in the 100-meter dash in 12.84 seconds, the 200 in 26.42 and the 400 in 1:00.46.
Drew Peterson, Boulder City. A senior, Peterson won four gold medals at the state meet in Carson City, including individual titles in the 100-yard freestyle in 46.33 seconds and the 200 individual medley in 1:52.3 to lift the Eagles to the team championship. Signed with Rider.
Olivia Barker, Bishop Gorman. A sophomore, Barker paced the Gaels to their second straight team state title while winning individual gold medals in the 100-yard butterfly in 55.09 seconds and the 200 individual medley in 2:05.2.