Girls track and field: All-County team

Some of the time between Madi Kramer’s sophomore and junior track seasons will be devoted to her attempting to improve her starts.

Kramer’s ability to finish requires minor tweaking, at best.

Standing 5-foot-9, the Center Grove sophomore maximized her long stride this past season while emerging as one of the state’s best both as a hurdler and sprinter.

Kramer, who is the Daily Journal’s Athlete of the Year in girls track and field, placed sixth in the 100-meter hurdles at the state meet before finishing eighth in the 200-meter dash. She also found time to run the second leg of the Trojans’ 4×100 relay, which took 16th in a time of 49.31 seconds.

“It was definitely stressful at times, feeling like I had a standard to reach, but as soon as the season started I could tell it was going to go better than I expected it to,” Kramer said. “It was just about settling into that spot and working hard every day to get there.”

Kramer considers herself a 100 hurdler first, but enjoys the sprints too, both with and without a baton in her hand. All three events are unique and present different challenges.

Center Grove girls coach Wes Dodson has many talented underclassmen in his program, including Kramer. He looks forward to watching her improve the next two years.

“I think her biggest improvement this season was in the hurdles over the 200,” Dodson said. “She was really good at both last year, but man, she is just so quick in between those hurdles.

“Madi did run the hurdles a little bit last year, but because we had two others, she ran, like, a 15.7. This year she ran a 14.39. She dropped a second and a half. That’s a crazy amount of drop. Obviously, it’s a little bit in her blood to be a great hurdler.”

Kramer’s sister, Makensie, a 2021 Center Grove graduate, placed second at state last year in the 100 hurdles. Makensie Kramer now competes at Ball State.

The younger Kramer’s choice of events isn’t common; sprint hurdlers tend to also run the 300-meter hurdles or the 100-meter dash, but not the 200.

“It actually makes it kind of tough on her because in the trials, they’re back to back,” Dodson said. “I’ve seen kids do the 100, and then the 100 hurdles because they’re just 100s, but because Madi is especially good at the 200, we’ve got her doing the 100 hurdles and the 200, which I would say is extremely rare.

“It’s a very interesting combination, but it’s what works best for her.”

Perhaps the biggest challenge that Dodson faces as Kramer enters the back half of her prep career is resisting the temptation to use her in other events.

“She could probably long jump, but we won’t do that,” he said. “And she could probably high jump, too. It’s tough, but I always have to keep Madi’s health in check first.”

Kramer, a forward for Center Grove soccer in the fall, likes the way her favorite sports mesh in terms of training.

“I think they both fit together in the fact that you have to be in shape, and so when I’m practicing for both, I’m getting double the training and double the stamina,” Kramer said.

“(Winter) is definitely really important. My freshman year I used it to heal my body, and this year I used it to run more, so that when I got to track season I was definitely better off.”

The 2022 All-County team for girls track and field:

  • Brooke Coffman, Franklin junior: Advanced to state in 300-meter hurdles after winning regional with a time of 46.37 seconds … Part of Grizzly Cubs’ 4×400 relay that also made it to state, finishing with 24th … Just missed making state in high jump, placing fourth at regional.
  • Kylie Crum, Center Grove senior: Sixth at state meet in shot put with distance of 41 feet, 8¼ inches … Finished sixth at Franklin Regional with top distance of 39-10½.
  • Emma Gardner, Greenwood freshman: Made varsity debut season an impressive one by advancing to state meet in the discus, where she finished 13th with a throw of 119 feet … Her throw of 127-1 was good for fifth at regional.
  • Kate Henselmeier, Center Grove junior: Picked up a seventh-place state medal in the 400-meter dash with a time of 57.45 seconds … Part of 4×400 relay that finished 22nd at state after taking second at regional in 4:05.96.
  • Bella Hodges, Center Grove senior: Finished eighth in 800-meter run at state, running a time of 2:15.94 … Second at Franklin Regional in 2:16.63 … Also helped Trojans’ 4×400 relay place 22nd at state meet.
  • Ellie Irwin, Greenwood sophomore: Tied for fourth at state meet in the high jump by making it over 5 feet, 7 inches … Won regional at Franklin by making it over the same height … sectional and county champion.
  • Madi Kramer, Center Grove sophomore: A double medalist at state, placing sixth in 100 hurdles and eighth in 200-meter dash … also ran second leg for Trojans’ 4×100 relay that was 16th at state in 49.31 seconds.
  • Amy Luttrell, Greenwood sophomore: Finished 12th at state meet in pole vault after previously winning both sectional and regional … School record-holder, having cleared 11 feet, 6 inches.
  • Drew Mallory, Whiteland senior: Seventh at state in the discus with top throw of 131 feet, 5 inches and 15th in the shot put with best effort of 39 feet, 1¼ inches … Third at regional in shot put and fourth in discus.
  • Morgan Sandrock, Franklin, junior: Just missed awards podium at state finals by tying for 10th in the high jump with a best of 5 feet, 4 inches … Placed third at regional.
  • Shelby Wingler, Center Grove junior: Runner-up at state meet in shot put with top distance of 45 feet, 4½ inches … Was also 24th in discus … Won regional in shot put (46-10¾) and discus (142-1).

Honorable mention

Suhk Chahal, Center Grove; Makena Cruse, Greenwood; Samuela Grosso, Indian Creek; Paige Iaria, Indian Creek; Tori Jackson, Whiteland; Kristen Lavergne, Center Grove; Olivia Nicoloff, Franklin; Sydney Rodgers, Whiteland; Aubrey Runyon, Franklin; Brooklyn Taylor, Whiteland; Khloie Walker, Center Grove