ADM’s Colton Pirtle signs with Central Track and Field
While COVID-19 might have put the possibility of further athletic careers at risk for some spring athletes, that is not the case for ADM’s very own Colton Pirtle. Recently, the senior announced his commitment to run for Central College Track and Field in Pella.
“My sophomore year when coach Whisner was there and we went up to Central for a college meet and I ran the 200-meter dash there and I thought that was pretty cool,” began Pirtle. “Years later some buddies of mine in Rylan Heffernan and Lucas Heitz went there and I thought that I would like to join them. Eventually, they (Central) reached out to me and they were really the first to reach out to me and I got the vibe of ADM already but more on a college level.”
Pirtle and the rest of the ADM seniors were ready to take Tiger boys track and field to new heights in 2020 before the pandemic hit, receiving high praise from head coach Jesse Hunt.
“This is an amazing senior group that’s not just full of talented athletes but true leaders,” began Hunt. “These guys do a good job of showing what a true teammate really is and how you can affect positive change whether or not you are on the track.”
Pirtle sure aided in that both on and off the track. While he was sprinting on the track, the senior took part in several events including the 100-meter dash, the 200-meter dash, and the 110-meter high hurdles. Along the way, Pirtle posted strong marks in all three events with a career-best mark of 11.6 seconds in the 100-meter dash, 23.4 seconds in the 200-meter dash, and 15.8 seconds in the 110-meter hurdles. Success on the track was not hard to find for Pirtle who worked his way to the top. It was a goal, in a sport that Pirtle felt destined to be a part of from the get-go.
“Track stood out to me because it felt like a sport where I could really make a name for myself,” said Pirtle. “It really embodied me because you don’t have to be tall or short to be successful as long as you put your heart into it and that’s what I did. Track just felt like the right fit for me.”
All the hard work poured in has now resulted in a continuation in the sport of track and field for Pirtle, something that produced a lot of excitement for the now-former ADM athlete.
“I’m glad the journey on the track isn’t over for me just yet,” said Pirtle. “Just to be able to do this at the college level is extremely exciting and I’m very grateful for the opportunity.”
Grateful for the opportunity in more ways than one. With the 2020 spring sports season cut down before it could really get started, it really put a damper on things.
“It was pretty bumming for those in track or just involved in spring sports in general,” began Pirtle. “I was really looking forward to implementing what I learned from my freshman year until my senior year. I was looking forward to giving others that same experience and enjoyment that I had.”
Thrown into an early off-season, Pirtle continued on as normal despite the most non-normal occurrence.
“Even though the season was canceled, I still felt like I had to train and work like we were in season,” said Pirtle. “I thought of it as a chance to continue to improve myself.”
Pirtle will now be joining a Central College squad that recently sent four athletes onto the indoor national track meet. The program finished fifth in both the American Rivers Conference indoor and outdoor meets. He will join up with returning All-Conference performer and former Tiger in Rylan Heffernan. The program has totaled 82 All-Americans and has 19 individual national champions across its history.