Lily Flynn could not think of a better way to end her junior year of high school.
She teamed up with her twin sister, Sarah, and Claire Wilson and Haley McLean to win the distance medley relay at the New Balance Nationals Outdoor meet in Greensboro, N.C., June 17.
The four Ursuline School students, representing the Koalas Track Club, finished with the nation’s second-fastest time for the 2018 outdoor season at 11 minutes, 47.05 seconds. All four runners earned All-American honors.
“I really wanted to end the season on a good note,” Lily told CNY. “There is no better way to end it than as national champions with two really good friends and my sister.”
The distance medley relay consists of runs of 1,200, 400, 800 and 1,600 meters. Sarah (1,200, 3:36.39), Claire (400, 1:03.29) and Haley (800, 2:19.42) all ran personal-best times before Haley handed off the baton to Lily.
Lily, the New York state indoor champion in the 1,000-meter run, was seven seconds behind the leader in seventh place when she was handed the baton and took the lead with about 120 meters remaining. Her 1,600-meter time of 4:47.95 was a second off her personal best.
“With 600 meters left, my legs were feeling really good and I wasn’t far behind the leader. I knew I had something left,” Lily said.
The four runners ran almost 10 seconds faster than they did at indoor nationals, where they placed fifth.
“They’re all great students. They work hard in the classroom and they take that on the track,” said Ursuline track coach Jan Mitchell.
All four runners will return to Ursuline in New Rochelle in the fall. Sarah, Claire and Haley will run cross-country to prepare for the indoor and outdoor seasons. Lily will play soccer in the fall before joining her teammates for the indoor and outdoor track seasons.