Pride’s Trotter gang: Built for speed
From left: Levi Richarson, Jordan Leal, JR Plote.

Chardea Trotter, Ben Trotter and Brandon Trotter don’t trot.

They don’t jog, and they don’t lope.

They sprint, and they could earn Mountain Pointe’s track and field team some valuable points in meets this season.

That speed goes on display at the annual Chandler Rotary Track and Field Invitational Friday and Saturday at Chandler High School.

It’s one of the two major meets of the season, including the state championships, for teams, but Pride track and field coach Jeff Griffin doesn’t see it as an event that will define the season.

“It takes the pressure off and when that happens the times go down,” Griffin said.

The Pride also treat dual meets as a “spring training” for later in the year.

“It gives the younger people who don’t get a chance to get into invitationals to compete on a weekly basis and build the program,” Griffin said.

Chardea Trotter placed sixth in the state 200-meter finals as a junior last season and is the Pride girls leading candidate in the sprints this season.

Carlin Biederbeck is among the Pride’s leading 100-meter hurdlers.

Mary Marcoux is on the 4x100 and 4x4 relay teams.

Shaman Bailey gets an opportunity to see what the girls state competition looks like in the long jump this weekend, and Kaitlyn Clark is back in the girls discus and shot put after qualifying for the state meet last year.

Annie Uriell is one of the Pride girls team high jumpers this season.

The girls distance events are led by Ellen Hill in the 1,600 and Lindsey Schader in the 3,200.

Ben Trotter is among the leading sprinters for the Pride boys team while Turner Jacobson can check out the state’s top pole vaulters this weekend.

Connor Donnelly is among the top 800-meter runners on the boys team this season, and Shelby Goodman is the distance guy in the 1,600 meters.

Mountain Pointe traditionally blends football players into its track and field program, and the Pride will have at least four making that transition this season.

Brandon Trotter takes his speed as a wide receiver and defensive back to the 400 meters while wide receiver Levi Richardson doubles up in the high jump and long jump.

Pride lineman JR Plote will compete in the shot put and is learning the discus for the first time this season.

“He’s never thrown the discus before, but he’s improving by 5 or 10 feet every time he throws,” said Griffin, who is also the defensive line and kicker coach for the Pride football team that went 12-1 last fall.

Jordan Leal, a sophomore fullback and linebacker, is also learning the shot and discus.

“Jordan hasn’t thrown since junior high school,” Griffin said, “but he’s doing a good job, too.”

Working together in football, Griffin and head football coach Norris Vaughan both benefit from the dual sports.

“We know we have to share to have success,” Griffin said. “We share with other programs, too, but here football players learn to get faster and get a good workout, so it’s a good deal.” 

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