A Quick Look at Girls State Qualifying Meets Featuring Your Prep Sports Area Teams
Your Prep Sports
The opening day of the state track and field meet is just a week away.
Before the three-day state track and field meet gets underway at Drake Stadium in Des Moines on May 18 athletes around the state need to secure spots at the meet.
That process comes Thursday with co-ed state qualifying meets being held across the state in all four classes.
In Class 4A the top two finishers in each event at each of the six qualifying meets secure automatic spots at the state meet along with the next 12 best performances in each event.
Classes 2A and 3A the top two finishers in each event from all eight qualifying meets earn automatic spots with eight additional qualifiers in each event.
In Class 1A it is the event winner at all 10 qualifying meets that are automatically in along with the next best 14 performances that qualifying for state.
Before the focus shifts to the state meet we take a look at what to watch at the state qualifying meets that feature teams from the Your Prep Sports area.
Class 4A Qualifier No. 2
When: Thursday, 4 p.m.
Where: Dalzell Field in Dubuque
Teams: West High; Liberty High; Cedar Falls; Clinton; Dubuque Hempstead; Dubuque Senior; Waterloo East; Waterloo West
Athlete to watch: West High junior hurdler Erinah Carter will look to continue a strong season with a big day at the state qualifying meet.
Carter is the top seed in the 100 hurdles entering with a time of 15.90 which ranks 20th in Class 4A this season.
Carter anchors the West High shuttle hurdle relay team that is also top-seeded with a time of 1:06.92 which ranks sixth best in 4A this season.
Sophia Olivo, Lily McConnell and Hebah War join Carter on the Trojan shuttle hurdle squad that returns three members from a team that finished third at the 4A state meet last season.
Event to watch: Any time Dubuque Hempstead is in the field the distance races are always ones to watch and Thursday should be no exception.
Liberty High junior Cori Mac continues to flash this season and is coming off a stellar day at the Mississippi Valley Conference divisional meet.
Mac will battle with the Dubuque Hempstead duo of Keelee Leitzen and Julia Gehl in both the 1,500 and 3,000 on Thursday.
The 3,000 should be especially strong with Gehl holding the top time at 10:20.51 and Mac second at 10:27.35 while Dubuque Senior junior Leah Klapatauskas is third at 10:32.75.
Mac is fourth in the 1,500 with a time of 4:47.52 trailing Leitzen, Gehl and Klapatauskas.
Breakdown: Liberty High will look to carry over the success of last week when the Lightning claimed the first MVC divisional title in program history.
Junior thrower Jolie Nordell and freshman Alexi Thigpen both enter as top seeds in field events for the Lightning.
Thigpen is the top seed in the long jump at 18-0 ½ while teammate Jasmine Barney is second with a jump of 18-0.
Nordell is top-seeded in the shot put (37-10) and second in the discus (105-6) while the Lightning have the top time in the 4×200 and distance medley relays.
West High is led by its hurdle crew as Olivo has the third fastest time in the 100 hurdles and junior Erinn Varga is top-seeded in the 400 hurdles at 1:06.56.
Class 4A Qualifier No. 4
When: Thursday, 4 p.m.
Where: North Scott High School in Eldridge
Teams: City High; Bettendorf; Burlington; Davenport Central; Davenport North; Davenport West; North Scott; Pleasant Valley
Athlete to watch: The breakthrough for Ani Wedemeyer came last year around this time as she capped an impressive freshman season with an outstanding postseason run.
The City High sophomore will look to duplicate that performance this spring.
Wedemeyer enters the state qualifier second seeded in both the 400 and 800 and with top-nine times in Class 4A this season in both events.
Expect Wedemeyer to be a big part of the relay plans for City High on Thursday.
The middle-distance standout has anchored the City High 4×400 and distance medley relay teams that both enter the district meet as the top seed and with top-10 times in 4A this season.
Event to watch: Like her teammate City High senior Eva Reynolds is an integral part of the City High relay plans in the postseason but has her own individual event in which to chase a state medal.
Reynolds is the top seed at the state qualifying meet in the 400 hurdles with a time of 1:05.76 that ranks fifth in Class 4A this season.
Last season Reynolds was seventh at the 4A state meet in the event and has already taken nearly a second off of her state meet time from a year ago.
Breakdown: Led by Wedemeyer and Reynolds and sisters Nina and Nicole Peterson in the 3,000 the Little Hawks should have plenty of individual success on Thursday.
Emily Arling is seeded third in the long jump with a leap of 16-5 ½ and freshman Hannah Braun and Rachel Haack are seeded fourth and fifth in the discus.
However, expect City High to do much of its damage in the relays.
In addition to having the top time among state qualifying meet teams in the 4×400 and distance medley, the Little Hawks have the second fastest time in the sprint medley and are seeded third in the 4×200.
Class 3A Qualifier No. 6
When: Thursday, 4 p.m.
Where: Mapleleaf Athletic Complex in Mount Pleasant
Teams: Clear Creek Amana; Solon; Fairfield; Fort Madison; Keokuk; Mount Pleasant; Washington; West Burlington/Notre Dame
Athlete to watch: Solon has another star-studded line with seniors Sophia Stahle and Kayla Young, junior Gracie Federspiel and sophomore Aly Stahle all top seeds in multiple individual events.
Expect those to do their normal work on Thursday but keep an eye on Solon throwers Leah Kollar and Kate Shafer.
Both Kollar and Shafer enter as the top seed in the shot put and discus respectively and can give the Spartans 3A title hopes a big boost with state-meet points next week.
To have a chance to score in Des Moines Kollar and Shafer need to take care of business on Thursday.
Shafer has the 11th best discus mark in 3A this season at 121-3 and teammate Abigail Felton is seeded second in the discus on Thursday.
Event to watch: Clear Creek Amana will attempt to send a pair of athletes to the state meet in the long jump where freshman Elizabeth Timmerman and senior Emma Descourouez are the top two seeds at Thursday’s state qualifier.
Timmerman has been impressive during her debut season and has the 12th best mark in 3A this season at 17-1 ¾.
Descourouez has the second-best mark at the state qualifying meet at 16-5 ½.
Solon has a pair of athletes that could push for automatic qualifying spots in junior Hailey Miller, who is seeded third at 16-4 ½ and senior Aisley Foster who is the fifth seed at 15-9.
Breakdown: Defending 3A state champion Solon expects to be after another title in Des Moines next week and the Spartans will look to start that championship chase with a dominating effort on Thursday.
The Spartans are the top seed in 17 of 19 events including all seven relays and have the top two qualifying marks in four different individual events.
Federspiel is the top seed in both the 400 and 800, Aly Stahle is the top seed in both the 100 and 200 and Young is the top seed in the 1,500 and 3,000.
Sophia Stahle is the top seed in the 100 and 400 hurdles while Kollar and Shafer are the top seeds in the shot put and discus.
Solon is the top seed in all seven relays, has a top-12 time in 3A this season in all seven and has top-eight times in 3A in six.
Clear Creek Amana junior Bliss Beck is tied for the top seed in a crowded high jump field clearing 5-2 and the Clippers are the second seed in five relays.
The Clippers are seeded second to Solon in the shuttle hurdle, sprint medley, distance medley, 4×800 and 4×400 relays.
Class 2A Qualifier No. 7
When: Thursday, 4 p.m.
Where: Tipton City Park
Teams: West Branch; Camanche; Cardinal; Central Lee; Durant; Louisa-Muscatine; Mediapolis; Mid-Prairie; Tipton; Van Buren; West Liberty; Wilton
Athlete to watch: It has already been an impressive final season for West Branch’s Iva Senio but the senior sprinter can put the finishing touches on her farewell year with a big final week starting on Thursday.
Senio will battle for the title in the 100 entering with the second fastest time at 12.76 behind only Wilson senior Se Ann Houghton who has run a 12.75.
Look for Senio to continue to shine in the relays where she has anchored the Bears 4×100 and 4×200 teams to top-15 times in Class 2A this season.
Event to watch: The West Branch 4×100 squad has come on strong this season and should be in contention for a state medal next week.
That is if the Bears can run a clean race on Thursday.
The foursome of Ava Finley, Avery Schultes, Addi Schultes and Senio has the second fastest time in the state qualifying meet and seventh in 2A this season and 51.16.
Mid-Prairie has the fastest time in 2A this season at 50.62 and is the state qualifying meet favorite on Thursday.
Breakdown: A year ago West Branch sent just two events to state, the 4×200 relay and Alyssa Pierce in the shot put.
Both of those two events should be in the mix to return to the state meet on Thursday as the Bears look to put an exclamation point on what has already been an impressive season.
Sadie Smith and Pierce enter seeded second and third respectively in the shot put and both have top-20 efforts in Class 2A this season.
Smith and Pierce should battle with Tipton senior Elian Dzangue for automatic qualifying spots.
The West Branch 4×200 team of Avery Schultes, JaLynn Falco, Addie Schultes and Senio is seeded second behind Mid-Prairie and has the 15th fastest time in 2A at 1:50.33.
Class 1A Qualifier No. 10
When: Thursday, 4 p.m.
Where: WACO High School in Wayland
Teams: Regina; Columbus; Danville; Highland; Hillcrest Academy; Keota; Lone Tree; Moulton-Udell; New London; Pekin; Sigourney; WACO; Wapello; Winfield-Mount Union
Athlete to watch: Regina freshman Reese Naeve will look to make a major impact in her first state qualifying meet.
Naeve has top three qualifying marks in three different individual events and could be a part of a strong Regal relay effort on Thursday.
Naeve has the top time in the 100 hurdles among state qualifying No. 10 participants at 16.23 which ranks ninth in Class 1A this season.
She also has the third fastest time in the 400 hurdles (1:13.45) and ranks third in the high jump (5-0).
Naeve joins Alli Clark, Ella Keune and Morgan Miller on the second-seeded Regina shuttle hurdle relay team that has the 15th fastest time in 1A this season and 1:12.39.
The Regina 4×100 team of Naeve, Avery Recker, Dani Laughlin and Avery Kies is also seeded second and has the 13th fastest time in 1A at 52.16.
Event to watch: Keep an eye on the throwing rings at WACO on Thursday as Regina junior Sydney Wagner should be in the mix for a trip to state in both the shot put and the discus.
Wagner is the second seed in both events on Thursday behind Pekin freshman Anna Hadley who has the fifth best effort in 1A this season in the shot put and discus.
While defeating Hadley for the automatic berth to state will be a challenge Wagner can certainly put herself in a spot to earn an additional qualifier with a strong day on Thursday.
Wagner ranks 20th in 1A in the shot put with a mark of 35-8 and 22nd in the discus with a throw of 104-1.
Breakdown: Regina qualified three events for the state meet last season but should soar past that number on Thursday.
Naeve and Wagner give the Regals a pair of individuals with top two seeds while Clark is seeded third in the 100 hurdles, Mya Whitaker is third in the 3,000 and freshman Harper Erwin is third in the 800.
The Regina 4×400 relay has the third fastest time among state qualifier No. 10 teams and the Regals have the fourth fastest time in the distance medley.
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