They shined on the diamond, thrived on the gridiron, stood out on the court. They stood out in 2020-21. Over the next few weeks, the Journal Star will reveal nominees for its Area Prep Sports Awards virtual show. Here are the track and field finalists.
Boys track and field
School: Lincoln North Star | Year: Senior
The three-time state cross country champion finished second in the 1,600-meter run (4 minutes, 14.14 seconds) at the Class A state meet, and added a second-place showing in the 3,200 (9:03.66). Before state, his previous best in the 3,200 was 9:14.51.
School: Lincoln Southeast | Year: Senior
Koolen cleared 15 feet at the Class A state meet to place second. His best leaps came during the regular season. He set a Class A state record with a 16-4¼, and nearly cleared 16-8 at the LPS Championships. He is currently third on the state all-time charts.
School: Lincoln Northeast | Year: Junior
Romary won Class A state gold in the 800, finishing in 1:52.15, which places him fifth on the all-time state charts. He also finished second at state in the 1,600 (4:14.28) and third in the 3,200 (9:04.37). He led the state in all three events at one point in the season.
Girls track and field
School: Lincoln High | Year: Junior
The sprinter quickly emerged as the fastest girl in the state, recording the fastest electronic time in state history in the 100 (:11.67) and the fourth-fastest electric time in the 200 (:24.36). She won all-class gold in both the 100 and 200 at state, and anchored the Links' gold-winning 400 relay team.
School: Lincoln Southwest | Year: Junior
Rinn won all-class gold in the 800, crossing the finish line in 2:13.30. A week earlier, she ran a 2:13.07 in the 800 — the sixth-fastest time in state history. She also place fourth at state in the 1,600, finishing in 5:10.93.
School: Lincoln Lutheran | Year: Junior
Rodencal was the only girls athlete to win four gold medals at the state track meet. She swept the hurdles, winning the 100s in :15.03 and the 300s in :45.73. She added a first-place finish in the 100 in :12.36 and was part of the Warriors' 400 relay team, which won gold in :50.47.