With their senior year at high school waning, Kaylie and Kelsie Doll have made their decision about their future.
The twin athletes, who have competed in several sports for Great Bend, have signed to compete for Fort Hays State University’s track and field team.
With many sports options — both sisters play volleyball, basketball and softball at Great Bend, Kaylie said the individual competition of track and field led them to deciding on track and field with FHSU.
“It is kind of not team sport related, so you can do your own thing,” Kaylie said. “It just seemed like everything was going well for us, and we have very high hopes, so it felt like a good idea.”
Both Kelsie and Kaylie will be competing in the triple jump.
“As of now, that’s all,” Kaylie said.
It was over the holiday break that Fort Hays State fell on the Dolls’ radar.
“We went to a clinic up there over Christmas break,” Kaylie said. “We got to work with their coaches and talk to them and some of their athletes up there.”
Kelsie said that during the clinic was when she really started considering track and field.
“There for awhile, she was going to do track and I was going to try to do something else, but when we went up to do the clinic, and (FHSU head coach Dennis Weber) was interested in me as well,” Kelsie said. “I have high hopes. I mean, I have a lot to improve on, so definitely he was helpful just in the day we were there.
“I think he can definitely help me improve a lot. I’m excited.”
Kelsie said with softball, it is easier just focusing on one event, but she didn’t rule out the long jump.
“With softball and track at the same time, it’s hard to get as much practice as we can,” Kelsie said. “Especially with other girls doing those events, too, when they’re full-time track.
“I think it might come along with (triple jump). We’ll see. We haven’t really talked about if we’ll do long jump or not.”
Having both the option of softball and track and field worked out well for Kelsie.
“The initial one was to go with softball,” Kelsie said. “That kind of ended up backfiring. At that point, it was stressful trying to figure out what to do. I would love to play any of the sports that I play, so finally making that decision was hard. Hays was a good school.
“We went up there for a visit and really liked it. The coach really knew what he was talking about, so by just kind of having someone want you makes you appreciate it.”
Kaylie has been to the Class 6-1A state track and field championships twice in her high school career.
Last year, she finished in second place in the triple jump with a distance of 37 feet, five inches.
“It helped knowing that I can compete with the people at the college level,” Kaylie said. “It’s something that really interests me, and I’m really excited.”
Kelsie has narrowly missed qualifying for the state meet.
“I have gone to regionals and I’ve been one place away each time,” Kelsie said. “This last year, I have a lot to improve, so I’m excited.”
Regardless of their senior season’s outcome, Kelsie said that the two sisters will continue to push each other in whatever they do.
“It’s always a competition,” Kelsie said. “Always.”