The future looks bright for Cathedral High School girls track and field.
That was true entering 2018, and it remained that way as the Lady Irish improved dramatically late in the season.
That improvement led to strong postseason performances, with the Lady Irish finishing second at the Indianapolis City Meet on May 7 and registering a fourth-place finish at the Sectional Meet at Lawrence Central on May 15.
“It was up and down this year, but it was a real relief and great to see that everything came together really well toward the end of the season,” Irish girls track and field coach Mark Doctor said.
The Irish, after finishing as the City Meet runner-up at Arsenal Tech with 148 points to champion Bishop Chatard’s 175, finished fourth at the Lawrence Central Sectional with 80 points behind North Central (147), Brebeuf (129) and Lawrence Central (116). The Lady Irish advanced 11 individual/relay teams to the May 22 Ben Davis Regional, with sophomore Nyah Conway winning the high jump at the sectional meet.
Conway won the event at the sectional with a jump of 5-01.00.
Conway, who also qualified for the regional meet in the 300-meter hurdles, was hardly the only Irish underclassman with a strong postseason. Junior Kennedy Miller qualified for the regional in two events, with sophomores Gracie Carr, Audrey McKinney and Kendrick Mernitz and freshmen Chloe Miller and Alexis Parchman advancing to the regional in individual events.
The Irish’s 4×100 and 4×400 relay teams also advanced with strong sectional times.
“Early in the year, we were trying to figure out where a lot of people fit,” Doctor said. “People bounced around and once we kind of settled into spots and they got a few meets in that event – and particularly the young kids sort of learned how high school meets go … – things started really happening then.”
A look at Irish girls track and field in 2018:
*Kennedy Miller turned in a strong season in the 100-meter and 400-meter dashes, qualifying for the regional in both events with second-place sectional finishes – 12.28 seconds in the 100 and 1:00.5 in the 400. Miller won the 100 (12.77) and finished second in the 400 (1:02.14) in the city meet. “She’s about as tough a person as you will find,” Doctor said of Kennedy Miller. “She stepped down in distance from the 400 and 800 last year. We went back and forth with putting her in the 200 as well, but we didn’t want to run her too much and decided not to.”
*Chloe Miller qualified for the regional in the 100 with a fifth-place finish (12.62) at the sectional. She finished second in the 100 (13.13) and third in the 200 (26.95) at the city.
*Parchman qualified for the regional in the 200 with a fifth-place finish (26.23) at the sectional.
*Mernitz qualified for the regional in the 400 with a fifth-place finish (1:02.59) at the sectional.
*Carr qualified for the regional in the 1,600 with second-place finish (5:14.11) at the sectional, winning the city meet in the event in 5:13.05. Senior Sofia Alatorre finished third (5:45.10) in the 1,600 at the city.
*McKinney qualified for the regional in the 3,200 with a third-place finish (11:47.88) at the sectional, finishing second (11:24.51) in the event at the city.
*Conway in addition to qualifying for the regional as the sectional high jump champion also qualified for the regional with a seventh-place finish (49.49) in the 300 hurdles. She won the city in the high jump (5-00) and finished second at the city in the 300 hurdles (49.69).
*The 4×100 relay team of sophomore Myjah Mintze and freshmen Chloe Miller, Kaylah Pitts and Parchman qualified for the regional by finishing in 50.22 at the sectional (sixth place).
*The 4×400 relay team of Pitts, Mernitz, sophomore Marcelle Blanchet and Kennedy Miller qualified for the regional by finishing in 4:16.19 at the sectional (fifth place).
Lady Irish relay teams also were strong at the city, with the 4×100-meter team finishing second in 50:30, the 4×400 team finishing second in 4:17.14 and the 4×800 finishing third in 11:17.83.
Sophomore Megan Kaster finished third (2:39.83) in the 800 at the city and senior Katelyn Cortner finished third at the city in the shot put (33-01.5).
“As you would expect with a really young team, there were some frustrating moments,” Doctor said. “If you had told me in early May we would have had the sectional and city results we did, I wouldn’t have believed it.”
Editor’s note: Because of printer deadlines, some postseason results of Cathedral girls track and field team were unavailable at press time. For information on the Irish’s postseason girls track and field results for 2018, please visit gocathedral.com.