The week between regional and state track can be tough on a coach.


Finding the balance between staying fine-tuned for the biggest meet of the year all while avoiding injury and ensuring each athlete has fresh legs can be a tough line to walk. Throw in the fact that school is out for the summer, and motivation can be an issue as well.


The week between regional and state track can be tough on a coach.

Finding the balance between staying fine-tuned for the biggest meet of the year all while avoiding injury and ensuring each athlete has fresh legs can be a tough line to walk. Throw in the fact that school is out for the summer, and motivation can be an issue as well.

For Skyline coach Summer Younie, her group of state-bound athletes have avoided all of those pitfalls as they prepare to head to Wichita today for Friday’s early 8 a.m. start.

“It’s been pretty low-key,” Younie said. “The weather didn’t help a whole lot Tuesday. We talked about having an early practice, and that didn’t work, so we just talked about the schedule for the weekend and then I sent them home, so they should all be very fresh.  They should all have fresh legs. We haven’t done anything overly strenuous this week”

The group arrived at Skyline for practice at 4 p.m. like usual, deciding to warm up running inside the school instead of outside.

“We’ve been warming up inside because they’re big sissies with the wind, and then we’ll go out and work on some approaches for the long and triple jump with Karson and Anna, and then Brandon and Anna and Morgan need to work on their starts,” she said. “Brooke ran some easy miles yesterday in the morning. So it really has been low-key.”

The team got a meal and a sendoff from Skyline today at noon as they looked to arrive on the Wichita State campus early and do a light practice on the track there.

“We’ll practice at the track – work on some handoffs,” Younie said. “Nothing too hard, it’s just that for some of them, it’s their first time at state, and for others their second. Anna has the most experience – this will be her third time at state.”

Younie said the team has been motivated to continue to practice and stay ready for state this week despite school being out for summer, something she wasn’t sure would happen.

“It really hasn’t been a big deal,” she said. “I worried that it would be. It was harder last week, just in that we had a bigger group going to regionals. For as much ruckus as they’re putting on right now, they really have been pretty motivated.”

For some of the Skyline athletes, this trip represents their first shot at the state meet. For others, it’s redemption after coming close last year.

“Brandon is really excited about qualifying,” she said. “He just barely missed it last year in the 800m, so he’s excited about making the 200m. They’re all excited to go.”