With the warm weather and time change coming, it also means that it's time for the track season to start up again.
Hubbard track head coach Rod Greenamyer is cautiously optimistic this season but has high hopes for his team especially after sending numerous athletes to state last season
"I'm always hesitant because every year is a new year," he said. "But based on past performances, we have the potential to be pretty good. If we can put everything together and avoid injuries, we can be successful."
On the girls side, both the 400- and 800-meter relay teams moved on to the state tournament. The 800-relay team of Katoria Carter, Briana Carter, Michele Starkey and Katie Zitnick were Trumbull Athletic Conference-8 and Trumbull County champions. They also placed in the top eight at the state level and were named All-Ohio. Three team members return to try to duplicate their feat with Katoria Carter, who also finished third in the state in the 400, now running track at Kent State University.
Zitnik will also put some time in with the hurdles this season for the first time while Starkey is a three-time state qualifier. She currently holds the school record in the 800.
"She is very versatile and can be a short sprinter," Greenamyer said. "She's also pretty good in middle distance."
The 400-relay team also included Briana Bridges. She will be a senior this year with last year as her first year making it to the state tournament.
On the guys side, only two team members from the 400- and 800-relay teams will return after losing half their team to graduation. They finished runner up in the TAC-8 and both teams advanced to the state tournament. The only two returning members are Andrew Zitnik and Andre Givins.
Jermaine Collins also returns after advancing to the state finals in the 110 high hurdles and 300 low hurdles. He was also named All-State by placing in the top eight. Collins also set school record last year and could be considered for the relay teams this season.
"Him and the kid at Lakeview, Ben Moody, they kind of battle each other back and forth," Greenamyer said. "They're probably the best in the area."
Returning for the girls are also Michella Davis, a senior, who runs in the 100 and 300 meter hurdles. She made district finals last season in the 100.
"She's a very hard worker," Greenamyer said. "Every year she's improved her times."
Greenamyer had the same thing to say about senior Taylor Gasser who has been running for four years. She made the district finals last season and her times have gotten better every year.
An alternate on last year's state relays was Brittany Mihaly. She also spends time as a sprinter. Chelsea Smith came out and ran track for the first time last season. She spends her time running the hurdles with the 300 hurdles as her specialty.
"She was one of her better hurdlers and I expect her to do better for us this year," Greenamyer said.
Another girl that came out for track last season for the first time includes Ashley Simpson. Greenamyer labeled her as one of the best distance runners on the team.
Rounding out the players to watch on the girls side include Kim Speerbrecher and Amanda Yrser. They participate in the throwing events such as the shotput and discus. They both have a solid chance of making the regional finals this season.
"I don't know if there's ever been a group of girls at Hubbard High School who have done as well as this group," Greenamyer said.
The boys has very similar success at the state level with the 400- and 800-relay teams advancing.
The two returning members include Andre Givins, who is a sprinter and will attempt the long jump this season. His specialty includes the 100 and 200. Andrew Zitnik, a junior, was the leadoff runner in the relay events.
"He's very dependable and has some speed," Greenamyer said. "We're not sure what he's going to run this year because of his versatility. He could run most events. His best event is probably the 400 and we're going to try him in that this year."
Another junior who will run sprints and relays is Larry Parker. TaShaun Lirenzo, a 200 and 400 runner, is a returning letterman. Hurdler Marcus DeMaiolo is another returning athlete who made the district finals last season.
Sean Offerdahl, possibly the team's best distance runner competes in the mile and two mile. Junior Eddie Zitnik, a sprinter and middle distance runner, is a returning letterman.
The throwing event roster includes Zack Lord, who was most valuable player in the throwing events at the league meet last year. He advanced to the regional finals last season.
Greenamyer spoke highly of the commitment it takes for kids to join and participate in track, especially for the seniors.
"Sometimes in track, it's tougher for the seniors," He said. "It's the end of their high school career. I give them credit for coming out to track while their friends are getting ready for parties and prom. It's takes a certain amount of dedication to come out for track anyway but it's definitely tougher as seniors."
Joining Greenamyer on the coaching staff include Pam Kimmell, who coaches distance for boys and girls; Tammy Manzo, who helps out with the girl sprinters; and Sue DeMaiolo, who works with the boys and girls hurdlers. Walter Angelo rounds out the coaching staff. He works with the boys and girls shot and discus throwers.
"I'm really lucky to have a school where the kids work hard, we have good facilities and a good coaching staff," Greenamyer said. "If everything falls into place, we should be pretty successful."