Coach: Patrick Ames
Last year: Finished seventh at the Northwest Conference Championships with 48 points. ... Finished fifth at the Class 1A Tri-District Finals with 39 points. ... Finished seventh at the Class 1A State Championships with 25 points.
Returning state participants: Mimi Meggison (jr., 3,200); Payton Lunde (so., 4x100, 4x200, 4x400*); Janessa Murphy (sr., 4x100, 4x200, 4x400*, long jump); Katelyne Zucati (so., 4x100, 4x200)
Others to watch: Ellese FitzGerald (fr., multi-events); Mackenzie Cox (fr., multi-events); Ryley Zapien (so., multi-event); Sydney Gospodinovich (so., throws)
Outlook: The Meridian girls bring a strong mixture of raw, talented young athletes and some savvy veterans. Even though the Trojans didn’t have tremendous success in individual sprinting events, Meridian was tremendous in they relays, and it should again be good. Payton Lunde and senior leader Janessa Murphy are coming off of winning a state title in the 4x400 relay. “Janessa Murphy is kind of the leader of our sprint and jump crew, and is always doing the right thing,” Meridian coach Patrick Ames said in a phone interview. “She’s fantastic in workouts and an even better competitor.” Besides the 4x400, Murphy ran in the 4x100, 4x200 and finished third in the long jump. Sophomore Katelyne Zucati also brings back a lot of experience in the relays. “Together they are a good group and understand how to run relays and run them well,” Ames said. Junior Mimi Meggison finished 11th at state in the 3,200 and is back. Fresh faces to watch include freshmen Ellese FitzGerald and Mackenzie Cox, who already have displayed their athleticism playing in other Meridian varsity sports. Sophomores Ryley Zapien and Sydney Gospodinovich also should give the team a strong boost.