The Durango Demons went indoors to kick off the outdoor track season.
The Demons participated in the annual Simplot Games at Idaho State University recently, joining the field for the multistate indoor prep event in Pocatello, Idaho.
The DHS boys 4x800 relay team was invited specifically for the invitation-only distance relay event. The event was staged on the 200-meter indoor banked, wooden track at Idaho State.
"It was a great event. There were some big schools there," DHS track coach Mark Dutro said.
He said the DHS 4x800 team finished a strong fifth in the race behind seniors Nick Gates, Matt Welbourn, Ty Otteson and Ian Cross. They ran 8:23.46, just .07 out of fourth place.
"It was a great kickoff to our season," Dutro said. "All four of those guys are seniors ... they want to shoot for a school record (in the 4x800)."
He said the Demons took 17 athletes to the indoor showcase.
"It was our biggest group ... nine girls and eight guys," Dutro said.
"We had some good performances. We're ahead of where we were last year. It was positive from that standpoint," the DHS coach said.
He added that the trip to Idaho would not have been possible without the help and support of the Durango community.
"Our dinner fundraiser ... the silent auction. We've had a lot of support this year. We really appreciate that," Dutro said.
The full Durango High School track and field team will mark the opening of the outdoor prep season Saturday at the annual Early Bird Invitational at Farmington High School.
The following weekend, the Demons will compete in the Piedra Vista Invitational.
The early meets offer a chance for the DHS track athletes to try various events with an eye on the conference and regional championships at the end of the season.
The Demons will host an early season meet on March 26 before the annual Durango Invitational on April 18.