Jayden Ulrich emerged as on the scene in 2019 with a state title and a runner-up medal for her efforts
It's hard to believe that Jayden Ulrich was just a blip on the track and field map entering the 2019 season. As a freshman for East Alton-Wood River High School, Ulrich dabbled in several oval events which included competing in a 200m race at the state sectional round. Ultimately, though, it was the shot put that earned her some notoriety as a fourth-place finish in the 2A classification.
The shot put is an event that has seen a transformation over the past 12 years with the likes of Dani Bunch (Mahomet-Seymour), Kelsey Card (Carlinville), "KD" Kathleen Young (Warrensburg-Latham), Lena Giger (Highland), Bailey Wagner (Grant), Emmonnie Henderson (Edwardsville), and Chloe Lindeman (Fulton). The magical 50-foot mark has been breached and it lends to the imagination for Ulrich to achieve and perhaps surpass her peers someday.
The 2020 season opened with so much promise as Ulrich set an indoor personal best of 47'8" which was good for US #3 at the time of the COVID-19 season shut down in early March. It is speculative as to how far she would have progressed, it is fair to say that she would have been the state's overall best thrower.