Sprints Jen Tvrdik
Coach Tvrdik started running at 10 years old to supplement her dedication to soccer, but soon made running her priority. She graduated from Dakota where she ran varsity track all four years and set the 200 record as a sophomore. She also ran cross country for three years and played soccer for two years. Coached Tvrdik thus far in her career has coached a top 5 state sprinter in the 100m, a state qualifying sprint medley in 2016 and has guided many of her student athletes to school records and personal best performances.
Coach Gysin is a 2009 graduate of Evergreen High School. He ran Track and Field at Evergreen and was able to be a part of the state championship 4x400 relay. He continued his competitive career running both indoor and outdoor for Adams State University for one full season as a Freshman. He began his coaching career in track and field at Alamosa High School, where he was the jumps and relay coach for two years. After graduating from ASU, he spent two years coaching multiple races at Evergreen High School. He is now proud to be teaching here at Dakota Ridge and is eager to bring his passion for track and field to this community.
Dakota Ridge High School Athletics
Head Coach Mark Stenbeck (303) 217-1670
Coach Stenbeck graduated from Chatfield High School where he ran cross-country and track. He attended Colorado Christian University, where he also ran, and graduated from Southwest Baptist University in Missouri with a degree in history. He has pursued a running career and has found success in marathon and half-marathon distances with personal bests of 2:23:48 for the marathon and 1:06:12 for half marathon. He began his coaching career in 2005 as a volunteer assistant at Chatfield. He joined the Dakota Ridge Cross Country and Track coaching staff in 2006 as assistant coach. In 2012, after some great years with Head Coach Mike Callor, Coach Stenbeck took over as Head Coach of Cross Country and Track and Field. Coach Stenbeck has a Masters Degree in School Counseling and currently works at Ken Caryl Middle School.
Head Coach Mike Clark
Coach Clark is a graduate of Abraham Lincoln High School in Denver. At Lincoln he was Denver City Champion in both the long and triple jumps and State runner-up in both jumps. Coach Clark went on to run track at C.S.U. where until 2011 he held the outdoor triple jump record. At CSU he also ran the 4x400 and 4x400 relays and was All-Conference in the triple jump his Junior and Senior years. Coach Clark graduated with a degree in math and computer science. In 2006 he became an All-American in Masters Track and Field in the triple jump.
Distance Chelsea Hitzges
Coach Hitzges is a 2001 graduate of Dakota Ridge. She ran both cross country and track, and holds school records for the mile relay and 4X800 relay. She graduated from UNC where she ran both cross country and track all four years. During her freshman year at UNC, she competed in the NCAA Division II National Championship meet for cross country. Now a teacher, she is passionate about running and coaching and her family.
Throws/Conditioning Amy Backel firstname.lastname@example.org
Coach Backel is in her 2nd season as the throws coach for the Dakota Ridge T&F program. She grew up in Pennsylvania and had a decorated high school career, earning 8 state medals in 4 different events and was a high school All-American in the indoor pentathlon . At the University of Oklahoma she originally competed in the Heptathlon, after her sophomore year she focused on javelin and shot put. She graduated as a two-time NCAA Division I All-American, 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials finalist, and the Oklahoma program record holder in the javelin (182-5/55.60). She stayed at OU to complete her master’s in structural engineering in an attempt to qualify for the 2012 Olympics (making the finals at the Olympic Trials) while an assistant throws coach gaining valuable experience. Amy does bridge design for EST, Inc. a civil engineering firm in Denver and trains at Front Range CrossFit. She is excited to share her years under elite coaches, her unique personal experience and passion for T&F with the Dakota Ridge student-athletes.