Girls Track and Field Profile: Lily Highley


Going into her fifth year participating in track, sophomore Lily Highley is more determined than ever to achieve her goal of dropping her hurdle time and finally making it to state. After being on varsity for a year and going into her second, Highley and her hurdling coach, Erin Sigrist, have been working together in order to improve. Highley has come a long way since starting track in sixth grade, but she knows there is always room for improvement.

Basketball has always been Highley’s main sport, but because of her ability to jump high and run with ease, track came easy to her. In track, one doesn’t always depend on the team’s skill overall, it more so focuses on the individual skill of an athlete, which was intriguing for Highley.

“I just thought it would be something fun to try because you don’t depend on a team’s skill, it’s more about your own skill which seemed very fun to me, and then I ended up being good at it,” Highley said.

During both indoor and outdoor meets, Highley participates in the 100 meter hurdles and, occasionally, runs short distances. Highley chose to participate in those events specifically because of her agility and strength she acquired from basketball. Not only does Highley excel when hurdling, but she enjoys doing it. She believes that because she loves what she does, it makes working hard that much easier. Because track is an extremely physical sport, hard workouts and practices are expected. Even though the workouts may be exhausting and may not be an athlete’s favorite, they are needed in order for the athlete to improve their skills.

“My least favorite part of track is doing the really hard workouts, but I know that they’re helping me run and improve my stamina,” Highley said.

Throughout the season, athletes are expected to improve their times and improve overall as an athlete. Success often comes from being motivated, whether it’s self motivation or being influenced by someone else, having inspiration can help an athlete become even more successful. For Highley, that inspiration is her hurdling coach, Sigrist. During practices Highley gets pushed to do things she didn’t think were possible, thanks to coach Sigrist. Not only does getting pushed past her limits help Highley become stronger, but it also helps her to become more confident throughout the season.

“Lily is super hard working and determined, and I love that she’s been setting personal goals on her own,” Sigrist said. “She is an awesome athlete to work with and a good role model for the other girls on the team.”

After her high school years are over, Highley is undecided whether or not she will continue her track career. Even though the future is uncertain, what matters is the lessons she has and is currently learning.

“The biggest lesson I’ve learned is even when you think you can do something, you can always push yourself and work hard to reach a goal,” Highley said. “You just have to work hard for things, it won’t just happen.”