Nike Desert Twilight Girls' Preview
The Sweepstakes Girls' race is going to be a heck of a toss-up between teams all vying for an NXN bid this season. The Southwest Region is incredibly deep this year, and year after year the competition has made Twilight into one of the biggest premier meets in the country.
Top high school programs from across the country are headed to Nike Desert Twilight in Arizona this Friday for one of the most competitive races of the season. On the girl's side, Jenna Hutchins, a sophomore out of Tennessee has a strong chance of winning the sweepstakes race. Coming off of a stellar outdoor track season, Hutchins has raced twice this year clocking in at 17:23 and 17:14.
(Below: Earlier this month, Hana Hall secured the victory at the Peaks Invitational, along her home course in Flagstaff. - photo by Ruben Rivera)
Hana Hall of Flagstaff will likely give her a run for her money as she's coming off two strong races so far this season. Hall raced at Peaks Invitational and Four Corners Invitational earlier this month, taking first place in both.
Last year's 3rd place finisher and top returner, Cameron McConnell of Cherokee Trail High School in Colorado, will be in the mix along with Caroline McLeskey of Highland High School who took 4th. The sweepstakes will also feature plenty of freshman standouts including Lauren Ping of Desert Vista High School who busted onto the scene with her season opener of 17:46. Her elder sister, Grace Ping, will sit this one out but will hopefully return for the later races next month.
Additionally, McConnell's teammate, McKenna Mazeski ran 17:38 earlier this season.
2018 Division IV State Champion Ali Upshaw will join the sweepstakes field after opening up her season racing at 7000 ft at the Peaks Invitational in Flagstaff.