The rewards of one of the best track and field seasons in Ellinwood High School history keep rolling in.
Lyles Lashley, Ellinwood’s head track and field coach, has been awarded the Kansas Cross County Track and Field Coaches Association Class 2A Girls Coach of the Year.
“It’s really a great award to win,” Lashley said. “It speaks volumes to how hard the kids worked, and really how hard the whole staff, and not just me, worked.”
Lashley received the news of the award just days before accepting the Kansas Coaches Association All-Classes Cross-Country Coach of the Year award.
At the end of May, Ellinwood’s girls’ track team placed second in the 2A portion of the 6-1A State Track and Field Championships.
“This is a great feeling,” Lashley said. “I would trade it for a first-place trophy. It would be real nice to win that.”
The Lady Eagles came away with hardware for the second time in school history, the first time since 1983.
They also collected a pair of individual state titles.
One went to Sophie Hayes, who graduated after the season, in the 300-meter hurdles.
The second went to McKenna Rugan, Brooke Panning, Joanna Strecker and Maddie Hayes in the 4x800-meter relay.
Panning also graduated, but Lashley said he still expects to build on the accomplishments.
“We hate to see them go, but we have a good nucleus coming back,” Lashley said. “We also have some good freshmen coming up, so we’ll look to be competitive again next year.”