The list of girls to win a state title in the discus for Silverado’s track and field team includes some illustrious names.
Skyhawks senior Monet Salazar hopes to join that exclusive sorority this weekend.
Salazar, the Sunrise Region discus champion, is the top seed in the event for the Division I state track and field meet today and Saturday at Del Sol.
The Division I-A, Division III and Division IV meets also are at Del Sol. The first event is at 3 p.m. today and 8 a.m. Saturday.
“(Salazar) is a really hard worker,” Silverado coach Jerry Oliver said. “I’ve been her weight-training teacher for the last four years, and she’s the strongest girl within the 10 years that I’ve done weight training that I’ve ever had. She works real hard in everything.”
Silverado has produced four state discus champions — Lara Saye, Brittney Turner, Danelle Taylor and Amanda Bingson — and Saye still owns the state’s top throw of 166 feet, 9 inches in 2000.
Oliver recruited Salazar to join the track team her freshman year, and Salazar said she was heavily influenced by Bingson, a 2012 Olympian who helped coach the Skyhawks’ throwers that year.
“It was a really cool experience to be trained and coached by someone who’s at that level,” Salazar said.
Salazar, also a standout basketball player for the Skyhawks, finished seventh in the discus at state as a sophomore. Last season she took second in the Sunrise Region and was fifth at state as Liberty’s Ashlie Blake won the discus for the third straight year.
“I’m one of those people where I have to constantly go and move, and if I don’t feel like I’m improving I’m going to change something,” Salazar said. “I’m always working out. I’m constantly trying to find something that I can improve on, so I’m always nitpicking at little things.”
Salazar threw a personal best of 134-2 at the Arcadia (Calif.) Invitational last month and won the Sunrise meet with a throw of 131-0. She is the only competitor for Saturday’s competition with a qualifying mark beyond the 130-foot barrier.
Salazar also won the shot put at the region meet with a mark of 35-9¼ and is the No. 5 qualifier for state in that event, which takes place today.
“I think I was very intimidated because of Ashlie the last couple of years, and I knew there were better throwers,” Salazar said. “So, going into it this year, I’m not as intimidated or as nervous because I kind of have experience going there now. I have more experience of what the feeling is like and the atmosphere and the girls.”
Salazar has given an oral commitment to play basketball at Eastern Wyoming but said she is drawing interest from UNLV for track and might pursue that sport instead. She said her goal this week is to surpass 140 feet in the discus.
“It’s hard to come across people that are that good in everything they do,” Silverado throws coach Andy Ostolaza said. “Her grades are through the roof, she’s on student council, she excels in basketball, she excels in this. Everything she does, she’s dedicated.”
Contact reporter David Schoen at email@example.com or 702-387-5203. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidSchoenLVRJ.