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2019 girls track and field preview capsules

DeKalb junior Sydney Dumas hands the baton to freshman Paige Walk as they work on exchanges during girls track practice Wednesday in the field house at the school.
DeKalb junior Sydney Dumas hands the baton to freshman Paige Walk as they work on exchanges during girls track practice Wednesday in the field house at the school.

DeKalb Barbs

Coach: Tywon Green

Keep an eye on: Katherine Olsen, sr., sixth place at state in 3,200 meters; Michiah Kirkwood, jr., state champion 800 relay; Maddi Overton, sr., discus; Kathleen Walstrom, sr., 800.

Also: Paige Walk, fr., 200; Isabelle Dlabel, fr.

Green’s comments: “We’re young and we should be OK. We should be able to compete. We’re not going to be as dominant as we were last year. We know that. Our staff all knows that we’ve got some coaching to do.”

The lowdown: After finishing fifth at the state meet as a team last year, this year is going to be about development of the new athletes coming up. The Barbs still have state experience and speed. Expect them to be sending athletes down to the state meet.

Sycamore Spartans

Coach: Joe McCormick

Keep an eye on: Hannah Kirby, sr., state qualifier in the 800; Emma Gerwig, state qualifier in the pole vault.

Also: Amni Austin, jr., pole vault, hurdles; Lilly Baker, distance; Brianna Stover, so., sprints; Alli Flatter, so., middle distance; McKenzie Reeser, so.

McCormick’s comments: “We are a pretty young team. The indoor season has been an exciting and growing time where our athletes have matured and made several personal gains. We hope to build on that in the outdoor season.”

The lowdown: The Spartans are coming off a successful indoor season despite their youth. Their focus is on the weekly gains they can achieve as they hope to qualify as many as they can for the state meet.

Kaneland Knights

Coach: Lori Shroka

Keep an eye on: Senior Rachel Richtman is a two-time state qualifier in cross country and a state qualifier in the 3,200.

Also: Shroka would not comment on individual athletes.

Shroka’s Take: “I like to see how well our teams are competing. I expect everyone to give their best. There’s no shame in doing your best.”

Genoa-Kingston Cogs

Coach: Barry Schmidt

Keep an eye on: Junior Chloe Gallagher returns in the pole vault after qualifying for state last year.

Also: Hanna Chriss, so., sprints; Alex Jerbi, sr., middle distance; Kaylee Rease, triple jump, sprints.

Schmidt’s comments: “We should be able to score consistently in some field events. As for track, we should be able to score points at most meets with distance events.”

The lowdown: The Cogs don’t have the number of athletes that they’ve had in previous years, but still look to take two events down to the state meet.

Indian Creek Timberwolves

Coach: Matt Smith

Keep an eye on: Rachael Andrews, jr., hurdles, long jump; Riley Oros, sr., jumps.

Also: Kyla Rachas, jr., sprints; Katie Cassidy, jr., middle distance; Brooke Probst, high jump.

Smith’s comments: “We are a very young team with a bright future ahead. Being predominantly freshmen and sophomores, we are building our foundation of success so that the coming years we can be a team on the hunt for glory.”

The lowdown: The Timberwolves are looking to build the foundations of success with only one senior on the team. This year will be about growth and acclimating to the high school competition.

Hinckley-Big Rock

Coach: Greg Burks

Keep an eye on: Izabella Cleaveland, distance; Lauren Engel, sprints.

Also: Madi McKee, mid-distance/sprints; Delilah Smithey, throws.

The lowdown: The Royals are loaded with young talent. In addition to sophomore Melinda Fox, freshmen Evelyn Kandley, Ella McGuire, Kayleigh McReynolds and Ally Mills should have an impact on the team, Burks said.

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