HELENA — As it stands right now, the Helena High Bengals girls' track and field squad has close to 20 pre-qualifying marks for the Class AA State meet this may. Odessa Zentz, Kylie Hartnett, and Logan Todorovich account for well over half of those marks. The cause of their success this year is a bit different for each girl.
“I've been running with the boys a lot to help push me and my pace. And then I have a lot of good competition with sage and Kinsey and Abby. So I even when I don't race them, I think about them in like the back of my head, like, 'Oh, I've got to push,' as if they were here. I've got to push for when I do race them,” said Hartnett.
“I've had injuries along the way, but I know how to deal with them now, now that I'm older, and I'm more mature. And I think I also have really amazing teammates this year. I mean, I already did, but I have Carly Ryan this year and she runs like the same events as me this year, which is nice, because we can train together and I think we just feel each other,” said Zentz.
“I think that I'm being pushed by my teammates at practice and my coaches. And then also, I also think that being already doing track and field I think that helps a little bit too,” said Todorovich
Zentz and Hartnett are juniors this year, while Todorovich is a freshman, and with their qualifying marks in the books for this year's state AA meet, Zentz and Hartnett are excited to get back in the mix with a number of other schools, while Todorvich is chasing that runner’s high in her first year of competition
“The nerves that you get in it to make it more exciting and, you know, the adrenaline that goes through you," said Todorovich. "State obviously, I mean, it's a big, big meet and I think it's gonna be really fun.”
“All the competition. To finally race more than just one team, every race. So it'll be like a true race with a bunch of competition. So it'll be exciting," said Hartnett.
“We haven't been able to race multiple teams at a time. So being able to race a bunch of people is like, so -- I love the adrenaline. I love competing. Competing is my favorite part about track. So being able to do that, again, is super exciting,” said Zentz
The trio of Bengals are now preparing for the Western AA Divisional meet which fires up on May 21, before they take on the Class AA State meet on May 28.