Ramiah Elliott with her teammates after 4th place in the 4x100 relay
The 2018 AAU Junior Olympic Games did not disappoint this summer. Many Indiana athletes took advantage of summer track this year, seeing it as a way to only get better for next spring. A little over a dozen individual athletes not only qualified for the games but also made finals and managed to place within the top 15 in their respective events.
Going into the week long event at Drake Stadium in Des Moines, the girl to watch from Indiana was incoming freshman Ramiah Elliott. She held the top seeds in the 100, 200 and 400. Unfortunately we only got to see her compete in one of those events, as she scratched from the 100 and 200. It proved to be the right choice though, as she was able to grab another national title this summer, crossing the line in 54.27 to win the 14 year old division finals on Saturday. She won the 200 and 400 at USATF Junior Olympics the week before. Elliott is just beginning her freshman year at North Central High School.
One of Indiana's best sprinters, Noah Malone, didn't have the best week. Just missing the finals in the 100 and the 200. But he did play an important role in the Indiana Storm's 4x100 relay making finals and ultimately taking 4th place.
One of her new teammates, Matisen Ingle competed in the discus, finishing 6th in the 15-16 year old division with a toss of 40.43 meters. Ingle is in the class of 2019 and took 9th at the state meet back in June.
Two Pike distance guys also earned top finishes. Kehinde Oladapo took 9th in the 1500m run with a time of 4:13 and 15th in the 3000m in 9:35.43, while competing in the 15-16 year old division. JT Hodges took home a gold medal by winning the 17-18 Mens 3000m run in 8:53. That time converts to about a 9:32 3200m time.
Staying local in the Indianapolis area, Hamilton Southeastern sprinter Tierra Sydnor took home a gold medal in the 400m Hurdles, after having only competed in them for about a month. She clocked an impressive time of 1:01 in the finals. She also competed in the 400m, taking 8th in the finals with a solid time of 57.76. She took a shot at the long jump as well, but ended up 22nd with a 5.25m jump.
In the 110 Hurdles, Malachi Quarles of Franklin Central, took home 6th place with a 14.49, capping off a great junior year.
Many other Indiana athletes competed as well, but this is just a sampling of the top athlete finishes. We congratulate every athlete that made it to this level of competition and now it's time for a well earned break before winter training starts up.