10 Sprints/Field Events Storylines to Watch Going Into the State Tournament
By: Coach Cash
1. The Fort Wayne female sophomores… How dangerous are they?
Symone Black, Karrina Smith, Brionna Thomas, Dejah Arnold, Dyamond Morris, and a few others took the Northeast region by storm last year, and are proving to be a tougher challenge this year. From top to bottom, the Northrop Regional will be the toughest by far. It is a forgone conclusion that they will score in Bloomington. But which ones will find their way to the top of the podium?
2. Will we see a 24 foot long jump this year?
Jeron Brown has shown promise this year, and Anthony Stella is starting to peak. Will the competition be enough push them over the 24 foot mark? Errick Roberts has been out for the season, and will not jump until New Balance Nationals in June. Ray Beverly was injured most of this year, but looked great at the county meet. Carl McQuay is the fastest jumper in the state, and is starting to figure out the event. There are a few others who have the potential.
3. Will we see a 7 foot high jump this year?
I don’t think there is a high jumper in the state that has CJ Smith’s understanding of the event. And few possess the power and athleticism of Austin Jamerson. Will 7 feet be needed to win a State Championship?
4. Will Quinntyn Qualls be healthy?
After a spectacular indoor season, Qualls has been on the shelf for most of the outdoor season. Could that mean fresh legs for the rest of the season?
5. Will the times ever drop for the boy’s 4×4?
To only have one team under 3:20 (North Side) at this point in the season is pretty disappointing. Many teams appear to be solid, but all have lacked that one “wow” runner that can drop a high 47 and inspire his teammates. And many have at least one “ouch” runner, who drops a unsatisfactory time.
6. Will Wertman win both?
Southridge’s Cassandra Wertman eclipsed the state meet record in the shot put last year, only to be bested by Portage’s Tori Bliss (a four-time state champion) in the event. She is also the defending champion in the discus. Only twice in the last ten years has the same girl won the shot and disc at the state finals. Wertman currently ranks first in the shot by over four feet and sits second in the discus.
7. What records are in danger?
At this time, the only ones I see going down are 300 hurdles for girls, and discus for the girls.
8. Who are the Mr. and Ms. Track and Field Award frontrunners? Will there be a fan vote this year?
Too many to list, but I wanted to shamelessly plug the award, that is in it’s 4th year. There will be an IndianaRunner.com vote for the distance awards, but as far as the other awards, I will leave it to the coaches.
9. Can HSE win the boys’ team race?
Across the board, the Royals look really good. Sprints, jumps, hurdles, distance…they appear to have it all. But can they survive through the tournament? And have their sprinters been tested enough throughout the season?
10. Lawrence Central or Northrop for the girls?
…Or can Westview create the greatest story in sports since Milan’s basketball team? I think LC has way too much firepower in the field events, and will definitely get help on the track. Outside of long jump, Northrop likely will not see any field event points, and will need to steal a few from the distance events.