SALEM, Ore.—The throws at Sprague High School have been more than front-page news dating back to 1985 when Brent Patera had his monster throw of 197-feet, 11-inches that still stands today 32 years after the fact.
When Les Charles took over the throws program around the turn of the century, the throws list quickly filled up with kids from the new millennium as his Charles’ son Brent, took over the program a few years ago, as Head Coach of the Olympians Track and Field program.
Names like Joey Pratt, Alex Cartwright, Josh Kuor that had help build a foundation since the early 2000s to pump some extra life into the throws program with three more throws look to add their names once more to the list and continue this tradition of Sprague throwers.
Austin Kleinman, Kyle Rosenau and Dylan Smith all have Don the Orange and Black of the Olys over the last four years as Kleinman’s and Rosenau’s name have appeared on the list at least once as their year-round training is slowly paying off:
Kleinman sit’s second on the All-Time List for Discus with a 168-feet, 8.5-inch toss last Wednesday (April 5) versus McMinnville and got on the shotput list as a junior last season as Rosenau added his name to the discus list last season as well.
Over the past four years, however, brought these three together as friends as Kleinman, Rosenau and Smith makes one last run at things in 2017.
“It’s been a lot of fun, it’s been one of the most memorable experiences through High School,” said Kleinman on the past four years at Sprague. “I mean I wasn’t super close with either of them until High School, but now both are two of my best friends.”
“It’s been awesome,” adds Rosenau on his experiences in his prep career. “I’ve gotten the privilege of knowing multiple throwing coaches, and they’ve helped me out. Just knowing all the people that I’ve thrown with has been…it’s been awesome.”
Through the wet and slick spring so far of their senior seasons, the rain and cold hasn’t slowed the Kings of Throw much as they are finding ways to be successful in the circle and the coned lines in front of them.
And their meet versus South Salem at South Wednesday was same story, different verse of what seems to be the infinite Winter of 2016-2017.
“I don’t know, it’s hard to describe,” laughed Rosenau on performing in the weather. “You just got to compete, even in these elements. You’re not going to get a PR each and every meet but good to try to compete.
“You just got to embrace the grind, you do your best.”
But hey, it’s how they are. They are always looking for ways to perform and compete no matter as the Big Three make another run at State while leaving their mark for the underclassmen as even their Head Coach knows how big those shoes are even when these three were freshmen a few short years ago.
“They just kind of followed in the footsteps of those other guys who came through in front of them and pushed it forward” starts Brent Charles on the three. “Kind of all the young kids that come through and we got another wave that will hopefully will be taking their shoes here in the next couple of years.
“Eli Larson, Jacob Luna and they see them, ‘ok this is what it means to be a thrower’. Typically our throwers are the last guys out at every practice, they’re the last ones to be done. They’re incredibly hard workers.”
Kleinman echoes what his coach said about hard work pays off and how they are the last guys out of practice every day as they work on their craft as Kleinman and his crew of seniors try to send that message to their younger teammates like a Larson or a Luna.
“I think the message that all three of us is trying to send is if you want to be good, you just have to work for it,” said Kleinman. “You can’t just kind of show up, but you got to show up and be the first one there and last one to leave-type of mentality.”
Against South in the rain, Kleinman took the discus (159-feet) and the Shot Put (47-feet-7.5-inches) events while Rosenau finished second in the discus behind Kleinman (137-feet) and third in the shot put behind Kleinman and Smith (44-feet-10.5-inches) with a throw of 44-feet, 7.25-inches) as the Olympians took the Top 3 spots in the Shot Put, Discus and Javelin as Sprague took the Top Spot in the Varsity Boys, Girls and JV Boys versus the Saxons.
And as Kleinman, Rosenau and Smith continue with their last run (or series of throws!), they’ll always remember being a Sprague Thrower.
“It’s a proud feeling because we put our all into every little thing that we do,” said Rosenau. “And we’re expected to do our best every single time and it’s nice to be a part of that kind of team that wants to do better every single time.
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