2020 Class 2A Girls Pre-Season Distance Preview

2019 State Champion: Lianna Surtz (So., Aurora [Rosary]) 5:09.07
Key Athletes: Surtz, Tatum David (Fr., Olney [Richland County]), Ava Parekh (So., Chicago [Latin]), Marianne Mihas (Jr., Chicago [Latin]), Lydia Roller (Jr., Staunton), Ella Bittner (Jr., Normal [University]), Payne Turney (Sr., Clinton), Olivia Rosenstein (Sr., Urbana), Bea Parr (Jr., Chicago [Latin]), Amelia Mclain (Sr., Benton), Emma Skinner (So., Morton)
Outlook: It's a strong argument but the 1600m is destined to be the best distance event. With the addition of three running superstars (Tatum David, Ava Parekh, and Marianne Mihas), it's hard to imagine a dull race. Defending state champion Lianna Surtz is, of course, is the fourth girl with sub-4:56 marks. While the 3200m is likely to be dominated by Tatum David and the 800m is looking to be owned by Mihas, the 1600m is anyone's game. All four girls are within seconds of each other and the 1600m combines the 3200m's endurance and the 800m's speed which levels out the playing field.

As an eighth-grader, David ran a 4:54 1600m. Now, after being a two-time cross country All-American, it's going to be exciting to see what this breakout freshman can run on the oval. She's known to go out fast, and considering her 5:04 first mile during state cross country, only the sky will be the limit for the youngster.

Parekh has already established herself in this event. Last September, she competed at the 5th Avenue Mile in New York City and ran a 4:48 full mile, the equivalent of a 4:46 1600m, and that was the day after the grueling Hornet Red Devil race. She currently holds the IL #3 position for 1600m run on a track. If she can bring her Manhattan speed into Chicago, the 2A field could be hers.

Although the half-mile seems to fancy Mihas' palate, she holds enough endurance to be a phenomenal 1600m runner. She's coming into the 2020 season with IL #7 returning time, not to mention she holds the 1A state title in both the 800m and 1600m. Mihas could be able to fight off the competition if the race comes down to a kick.