GLEN DALE - John Marshall's girls' track team returns three athletes who placed at last year's West Virginia state meet.
However, it is the one name missing from the roster that might hurt the most.
Kiley Defibaugh, a two-time Class AAA state champion pole vaulted, has graduated and Coach Jason Willis will need to find a way to replace the points she piled up.
Alexis Montes, who finished second in the discus at Charleston last year, will also be back in the shot put and could help ease some of that burden. The Haught sisters, Ashley and Erica, will also be counted on heavily, with both having placed in the 400 at the state meet.
Mallory Ball, Amber Holstine and Maria Tennant are back after leading the 800 relay squad to a fourth place finish and will be strong on relays. All three will also compete in sprints while Tennant will long jump as well.
Zoe Rogerson, Nikki Cunningham and Alexa Beatty will all join Montes in the weight events. Other sprinters include Nicole Nuce, Shelby Pell, Autum Shultz, Logan Kuhns, Kaylee Blakemore, Alison Duke and Ashton Thompson will also do the hurdles.
Distance events will be handled by junior Karissa Duke, sophomore Jade Worrels and freshman Megan Mckitrick while Cheyenne Fitzpatrick will do sprints and relays along with freshmen Ashley Dabrawski, Alyssa Eddy, Valerie Moore and Aleasha Yoho. Worrels will also high jump.
"We have a young team without a lot of experience," Willis said. "Our team isn't big, but I really expect us to be competitive. There is a very good group of freshmen that we believe can come in and fill some holes right away."
Other seniors are Austin Truex (sprints), Mike Wise (throws) and Jeremy Anderson (throws). Juniors consist of Guy Armstrong (sprints), Zach Conner (distance), Jacob Fast (distance), Jordan Ferris (sprints) and Nathan Hall (distance).
A large sophomore class includes Alex Brown (distance), Dakota Burge (throws), Reed Campbell (distance), Michael Conner (distance), Aaron Gonchoff (sprints), Alan Miller (hurdles), Gage Sutton (throws) and Andrew Wanat (sprints). Along with freshmen Hunter Hazlett and Ethan Hazlett (throws).
Thought the season was never in danger, the Monarchs track teams will be on the road the entire season as renovations take place at Monarch field.