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IR GIRLS SPRINT/HURDLE PREVIEW

GIRLS SPRINT/HURDLE PREVIEW

 

To start 2024, we’re previewing all 16 events heading into the track & field season. Performances listed reflect an athlete’s best mark on TFFRS from last season. We also have accompanying podcasts that can be heard on Apple or Spotify.

 

100 (4 returning medalists)

Ahniyah Bennett - 10 - Connersville - 5th at state, 11.88

Maya Taylor - 12 - Fishers - 6th at state, 12.02

Kylee Marshall - 12 - Munster - 7th at state, 12.05

Kya Crooke - 11 - Heritage Christian - 8th at state, 11.96

 

Of note:

Emily Norris - 11 - Carmel - 12.02

Jila Vaden - 12 - Warren Central - 12.03

 

Outlook: This is an event hit pretty hard by graduation that could be open this spring. Connersville sophomore Ahniyah Bennett is the favorite by virtue of her state meet place and best performance in ‘23 among returners. Heritage Christian junior Kya Crooke and Warren Central senior Jila Vaden both have potential to win this event but already have a jam-packed day before the 100 finals. Carmel junior Emily Norris could bring her team closer to a title by emerging as one of the top scorers in this event.

 

200 (7 returning medalists)

Ahniyah Bennett - 10 - Connersville - state champion, 24.50

Maya Taylor - 12 - Fishers - 2nd at state, 24.78

Kylee Marshall - 12 - Munster - 3rd at state, 24.62

Emily Norris - 11 - Carmel - 4th at state, 24.78

Amaya Royal - 12 - Castle - 6th at state, 25.05

Izzy Neal - 11 - Brownsburg - 7th at state, 25.08

Chloe Sensefeld - 10 - HSE - 8th at state, 25.23

 

Outlook: Unlike its shorter counterpart race, the 200 is laden with returners. Bennett feels more secure here as the defending champion, though any number of returners could dethrone her. Norris was the favorite going into the state meet last spring. Fishers senior Maya Taylor and Munster senior Kylee Marshall both have accolades and a plethora of experience. Charlestown senior Lyric Steele didn’t compete last year but was fourth in this event as a sophomore and has put down impressive early performances indoors already.

 

400 (6 returning medalists, top 3 graduate)

Omema Anyanwu - 11 - Zionsville - 4th at state, 56.26

Ava Olamajeye - 12 - Signature - 5th at state, 56.61

Ellie Barada - 10 - B South - 6th at state, 56.78

Jayda Holbrook - 12 - Charlestown - 7th at state, 57.04

Nevaeh Wren - 11 - Avon - 8th at state, 57.11

Gia  Clay - 10 - Pike - 9th at state, 57.11

 

Of note:

Olivia Cebalo - 11 - Carmel - 56.68

 

Outlook: Like the 100, this is another event with the top of the podium gone from last year. It seems most likely that this year’s state champion won’t be someone from last year’s medalists anyway. Hamilton Southeastern freshman Anissa Lammie won her junior high county meet in 55.67, a decent margin back to the field of returners here. Carmel junior Olivia Cebalo was off the podium in ‘23 but finished second in 56.08 as a freshman. It is also conceivable that Bennett could either look to scratch the 100 in favor of the 400 or even go for the triple crown.

 

100 hurdles (8 returning medalists, champion graduated)

Laila Smith - 12 - Warren - 2nd at state, 14.19

Lucy Hauser - 12 - Westfield - 3rd at state, 14.23

Jaliyah Paige - 12 - FW North Side - 4th at state, 14.27

Laya Lapri Ratney - 12 - Gary West - 5th at state, 14.42

Adrianna Swanson - 10 - SB Washington - 6th at state, 14.48

Anastasia Thompson - 12 - Lake Central - 7th at state, 14.70

Aubrey Runyon - 11 - Franklin - 8th at state, 14.69

Dede Eberle - 12 - Bloomington North - DQ’d in finals, 14.39

 

Outlook: This is a loaded event with eight of last years nine returning. Warren Central senior Laila Smith second behind the best 100 hurdler ever, but her eagerness for a maximum number of points makes for a taxing day against a field of specialists focused on one or two events. Westfield senior Lucy Hauser and Fort Wayne North senior Jaliyah Paige seem to have just a bit of separation from the field. Paige was also a medalists as a sophomore. Bloomington North senior Dede Eberle could give her team realistic state championship hopes.

 

300 hurdles (6 returning medalists, champion graduated)

Kya Crooke - 11 - Heritage Christian - 2nd at state, 42.85

Laila Smith - 12 - Warren Central - 3rd at state, 42.97

Katie Kubacki - 11 - Cathedral - 4th at state, 44.13

J’Nqe Jackson - 12 - New Haven - 5th at state, 44.31

Adele Schlotterback - 11 - Carroll - 6th at state, 44.33

Madelyn Knies - 10 - Jasper - 9th at state, 45.86

 

Of note: 

Dede Eberle - 12 - Bloomington North - 45.32

Ella Blackmore - 11 - Hamilton Southastern - 45.72

 

Outlook: Crooke was a newcomer to this event late in the season and very nearly won a state championship in it. Smith was the favorite most of the season and ran her best time at the state finals on a very busy day. Even this far out, these two seem destined for a showdown again, especially with more than a full-second cushion back to the rest of the returning medalists. Eberle is an intriguing wildcard here, not for the individual title but team points. HSE junior Ella Blackmore was sixth as a freshman and may also be on a contending team this spring.

 

4x1

Outlook: Last year’s champion Brownsburg returns two of four while Fishers and Warren bring back three from the next two teams. Avon and Lawrence North were the podium teams with four returners. Carmel and Bloomington North also scored in this event last spring and harbor team title hopes along with Warren.

 

4x4

Outlook: Carmel brings back three of four from a dominant championship group in the most exciting event in track & field. Warren could certainly challenge with all four back from a third-place team. That is asking quite a bit from the two Warrior stars, but both delivered last year. Hamilton Southeastern figures to be a difficult contestant; the Royals have all four back from a group that finished seventh and might be adding the best 400 runner in the state. The oft-mentioned Bloomington North won’t factor into winning but could utilize Eberle and a star distance runner to eke out much-needed points late for the title.

 

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