TRINITY — For some coaches, their first job in track and field comes by way of rebuilding a program and striving for stability.
But for Wiregrass Ranch boys coach Phil Kerr, who took over in January, it was nothing more than inheriting one of the most talented squads on the North Suncoast.
Kerr's Bulls flexed their track and field muscles once more, finishing 27 points ahead of Mitchell to earn the boys' first Sunshine Athletic Conference championship Friday evening in the SAC track and field championships at Mustang Field.
"I came in as the new coach in January and I think they hated me at first," Kerr said. "But I told them the hard work would pay off.
"I told the boys, 20 years from now they can look at the banner and say, 'Look, that was us.' Josh Reilly had a good day and so did Ryan Pulsifer."
Wiregrass Ranch (140 points) received steady performances from its distance runners with Reilly, who finished third in the 800 (2:04.87), second in the 1600 (4:35) and Pulsifer, who won the 3200 in 10:01.
Wiregrass Ranch and Ridgewood tied for first with 137 points on the girls side. The Rams' share of the conference crown marked their first since 2005.
Ridgewood sprinter Karissa Bertling placed first in the 100 (12.54), 200 (25.32) and 400 (58.22). Mitchell distance runner Kelli Williams also took first in three events, claiming victories in the 800 (2:19), 1600 (5:13) and 3200 (11:56).
"It's been seven years and I knew that if I was going to do it, this was going to be the year with 12 seniors," Ridgewood coach Sue Vien said.