2012 Spring Preview: Osifuye, others return to help lead Woodbury boys track teamLongtime Woodbury head boys track and field coach Jim Scott is back to lead the Royals for a 22nd season this spring armed with a talented group of returning athletes.
By: Patrick Johnson, Sports Editor, Woodbury Bulletin
Longtime Woodbury head boys track and field coach Jim Scott is back to lead the Royals for a 22nd season this spring armed with a talented group of returning athletes.
Leading the way for Woodbury is junior Johnathan Osifuye. Last year, Osifuye led the way for the Royals boys with an All-State finish in the triple jump, earning seventh place overall with a leap of 45 feet, 1 inch in the finals. Eden Prairie senior Michael Sandle won the event with a jump of 49-04. Osifuye had the second-best finish by an underclassmen at the state meet, just back of Park’s R.J. Alowonle’s 45-04 leap. As a team, the Woodbury boys earned 48th place overall with four points out of the 60 teams that scored at state. With 47 points, Stillwater won the boys state championship as a team, followed by runner-up Wayzata with 43 points. Also adding to the Royals’ point total at state last year was 2011 graduate Torsten Rotto. Rotto, who now attends Stanford, earned All-State with a ninth place finish in the discus throw to earn a finals appearance in the event. Rotto’s best throw of the day was a toss of 154 feet, 5 inches.
In all, including Rotto, Woodbury graduated eight seniors last year. In addition to Rotto, other key athletes the Royals will look to replace are Christian Gomeztagle, Britain Braithwaite, Will Wei, Leighton Becher and Justin Lindahl. However, joining Osifuye back on the squad this year are key athletes Kyle Haugen, Dimeji Iselewa, Davis Johnson, Ethan Turner, Abiola Abodunde and Kyle Schmidt.
Last year, Woodbury finished in sixth place in the Suburban East Conference – just back of Park, who took fifth place and ahead of seventh-place East Ridge. Rotto won the conference’s discus throw title earned fifth place in the shot put. In addition to Rotto, Gomeztagle took fifth place in the 800-meter run, Johnson earned fourth place in the 300-meter hurdles and took fifth place in the 110-meter hurdles, Haugen took sixth in the 300 hurdles, Osifuye finished in third place in the triple jump and Turner took sixth place in the long jump.
It’s expected that Stillwater, White Bear and Roseville will be the teams to beat in the SEC and in Section 4AA this season.
Woodbury hosts an invitational meet on Thursday at Royal Stadium. After that, key meets include the True Team Section competition on Thursday, May 10, the Suburban East Conference Championships on May 22 and May 24 at East Ridge and the Section 4AA Championships on May 29 and May 31 at Stillwater High School.