Before they were teammates at Campbell County High School, Remar Pitter and Lauryn Love’s paths began 2,500 miles apart.
Love grew up in Gillette and is now a senior multi-sport athlete for the Camels, playing volleyball in the fall. It wasn’t until a few years ago she began to take track seriously.
Pitter has been a track athlete since seventh grade. And even after eight years living in Gillette, Pitter said he still isn’t a fan of Wyoming winters. That’s because Pitter, a junior, was born in the tropical climate of Jamaica.
Last week, the pair both made athletic history at CCHS when they both broke school records at the Camels’ season-opening indoor track meet.
It was a great way to start the season, Pitter said.
“I’ve been working so hard for this,” he said about setting the school’s new record in the long jump.
Having her name included with some of the best athletes in the history of CCHS is a pretty special feeling, said Love. But it wasn’t until two days after the meet that she learned she’s the top female shot putter in school history.
“It was a while after I had broken it until I found out,” she said. “I didn’t even know what the indoor record was until (head coach Micah Christensen) told me.”
Love beat Elizabeth Maller’s shot put record of 40 feet, 9.25 inches, which was set March 7, 2014. Love’s heave of 42-7.25 broke the previous mark by nearly 2 feet.
Pitter topped Story Penning’s long jump record of 20-8, which he set Feb. 1, 2014. Pitter broke the record by 7.5 inches, jumping a distance of 21-3.5.
Love aims for gold
At least year’s state indoor meet, Love finished third in the shot put with a throw of 39-11.25. She finished behind Cheyenne Central’s Kaitlyn Migneault (41-1.75) and Sheridan’s Alex Cameron (40-10).
While Central’s indoor track team lost Migneault to graduation, Cameron is still on the radar to give Love some serious competition looking ahead to this year’s state meet. Cameron picked a perfect time to break her own record, Love said, as her put of 40-10 in last year’s state meet was a personal record. But it’s still more than a foot short of Love’s effort last week.
“She PR-ed by a lot last year, so who says she can’t do it again,” Love said. “I just have to keep it up so I can hopefully stay in first all season.”
Love hasn’t decided where she will attend college in the fall, but said wherever it is she wants to be part of the school’s track team. But first things first.
“I just need to have the confidence that I can get first place (at state),” Love said. “Really what I’m worried about this year is just making sure that I can stay far enough ahead where I’m not too worried about letting go of my place.”
The indoor track season has been condensed to just three regular season events, with last Friday being Campbell County’s first. Starting the season by breaking the school’s shot put record has led Love to have to get creative in setting new goals for the season moving forward.
“At a meet I’m hoping to throw 44 (feet),” Love said. “I’ve had some pretty big throws in practice around 44, so I’m hoping that each meet I can throw at least 44 and at state I can just have a really big throw.”
While January in Gillette typically means cold and wind, Pitter said he’s focused on staying hot and peaking at the state meet. While he misses the Jamaican sun, Pitter said he’s thankful for the opportunity to participate in track at CCHS.
“Coming from Jamaica, we couldn’t really do any sports over there or anything like that,” Pitter said. “I just wanted to try it out.”
It also took Pitter a few days after the meet to learn he was the new record-holder in the long jump at Campbell County. With the record now his, Pitter has set new goals to continue to grow as a jumper to help his team as much as he can.
“My next goal for jumping, I would say, is to just keep working hard,” Pitter said. “Hard work always pays off. I’m just going to keep doing my best and hopefully keep bumping the record up.”
Looking toward the state meet, Pitter said his main motivation is Matt Albin, Campbell County’s hurdles and long jump coach. While Albin pushes Pitter in practice, his teammates and competition in meets also plays a part in Pitter’s drive to jump further.
“All I can say is I hope I can push myself and the other people in the races with me, because at the end of the day they’re the ones that are getting me better,” he said.
The indoor track state meet will be broken into two sessions this year to limit the number of participants in the Campbell County Recreation Center Field House at one time. The girls state meet is Feb. 27 while the boys is March 6.