The Nashville Hornettes track team took home the NIT title for the second straight year. Front row: Brittnie Bartling, Grace Maschhoff, Rachael Kell, Avery Meade, Jaylyn Bower, and Josie Middleton. Middle Row: Sydney Schnitker, Sabrina Kollbaum, Jadah Heidel, Kylie Kozuszek, Destyn Hausner. Back Row: Hannah Meade, Taylor Cook, Kayla Ivey, Elley Szopinski. Not pictured: Janie Holle, Carli Hoffman, Delaney Varel, Raqui Elliott, and Morgan Fox.
By Brent Huelsmann
For the second straight year, the Nashville Hornettes girls track team won the Nashville Invitational. In one of the biggest meets of the season, the Hornettes defeated nineteen other teams on their way to victory. In their lone other meet this week, the Hornettes were just edged by DuQUoin, in the DuQuoin Invitational.
Coming off of a victory at the Tri-County Invitational a day before, the Hornettes finished second in the the DuQuoin Lady Indian Invite. A close battle between the Hornettes and host Lady Indians, the meet saw DuQuoin finish one point ahead of Nashville. Christopher finished third in the meet, followed by Johnston City, Pinckneyville, Anna-Jonesboro, and Murphysboro. Nashville finished with 144 points in the meet.
The Hornettes finished first in just three events in the meet. Nashville took home first place in the 300 hurdles as Taylor Cook crossed the line first. Jaylyn Bower also took home a first place finish in the 3200M run. The last first place finish of the meet, came from the team of Kylie Kozuszek, Taylor Cook, Sabrina Kollbaum, and Jadah Heidel in the 4X400M relay race.
After going 18 years without an NIT championship, the Nashville Hornettes track squad, has taken home the last two. This year, Nashville just edged the Freeburg Lady Midgets by 7.25 points to take the title. The Hornettes finished with 87.25 points to take the title. Freeburg was followed in the final standings by Okawville, Chester, and Wesclin to round out the top five. Althoff, Mater Dei, Central, Carterville and Anna-Jonesboro rounded out the top ten. Benton, Murphysboro, New Athens, Harrisburg, Dupo, Pinckneyville, Sparta, Frankfort, Columbia, and Elverado rounded out the teams.
The Hornettes got three first place finishes in the meet, two of which came from Sydney Schnitker. Schnitker took home first place in long jump with a jump of 15’9”, as well as taking home first place in triple jump with a jump of 33’05”. Grace Maschhoff crossed the line first in the 1600m run with a time of 5:48.
The Hornettes 4X400 and 4X800 teams bookended the running events with second place finishes. The team of Kozuszek, Cook, Kollbaum, and Heidel crossed the line in 4:16.8 seconds in the 4X400m relay for a second place finish. The 4X800 team of Cook, Kozuszek, Maschhoff, and Kollbaum finished second with a time of 10:23.92.
Nashville got third place in five different events. Cook got third in both of the hurdle events at the meet. Cook finished the 100m hurdles in a time of 17:58, and the 300m hurdles with a time of 49.5. Heidel also finished with two third place finishes as she finished with a jump of 33’.05” in the triple jump, and her jump of 15’04” in long jump edged Pinckneyville’s Dakota Krone for third place. The 4X200m relay team of Avery Meade, Kayla Ivey, Sydney Schnitker, and Destyn Hausner was just edged by Wesclin and Althoff in a close finish. The 4x200m team finished with a time of 1:54.99.
The Hornettes have just one more meet this season before they compete in sectionals. Nashville will look to win their second straight Southern Illinois River to River: Mississippi Division title when they travel to Carterville on May 4.
The Hornettes will compete at Sectionals on May 12. This year, Nashville’s sectional will be held in Chester. Last season, the Hornettes won their sectional.
If any Hornettes qualify out of sectionals, the State Final Prelims will take place May 18, with the State Finals taking place on May 20.