By RICK PETERSON
Anna Becker, Seaman
Becker turned in an impressive performance in her first high school country meet as a freshman, placing ninth individually in Saturday's Manhattan Invitational. Becker helped the Vikings finish third as a team, just four points behind Manhattan and Washburn Rural.
Khloi Bird, Washburn Rural
Bird, a two-time All-City pick, placed third in the Centennial League meet last fall after helping the Junior Blues win the city team championship with a fifth-place individual finish. Bird, who placed 52nd in the Class 6A state meet as a junior, opened her senior season with a seventh-place finish in Saturday's Manhattan Invitational.
Madeline Carter, Washburn Rural
A junior, Carter is a two-time All-City pick, winning the city individual title last season after a second-place finish as a freshman. Carter placed second in the Centennial League and 6A regional meets in 2020 before taking eighth in the 6A state meet. Carter opened her '21 season with an impressive individual victory in Saturday's Manhattan Invitational.
Bethany Druse, Seaman
Druse, a junior, was an All-City pick last fall, placing second in the city meet, eighth in the Centennial League and second in 5A regional competition before posting a ninth-place finish in the 5A state meet. A two-time state qualifier and state medalist in track, Druse opened her current season with a fifth-place individual finish in the Manhattan Invitational.
Mariah Farmer, Silver Lake
A junior, Farmer is a two-time 3A state placer, including an 11th-place finish last fall. Farmer won three individual titles and posted six top-three finishes as a sophomore. Farmer in the two-time defending individual champion in the Mid-East League meet.
Payton Fink, Washburn Rural
Fink made an immediate impact for Washburn Rural as a freshman in the Junior Blues' season-opening meet, placing sixth individually in Saturday's Manhattan Invitational. Fink helped Rural tie Manhattan for the team title, with the Junior Blues finishing second on a tiebreaker.
Gabby Grace, Seaman
A senior, Grace is a returning All-City selection for the Vikings, placing ninth a year ago in the city meet, eighth at regionals and 44th in the 5A state meet. A state qualifier in track, Grace is also a multi-event state medalist in 5A-1A swimming, helping the Vikings post a top-five team finish this past season.
Sydney Laster, Washburn Rural
Laster, a sophomore, earned All-City honors last season as a freshman, placing third in the city meet for the team-champion Junior Blues and placing 39th in the 6A state meet. Laster opened her '21 season with an 18th-place finish in Saturday's Manhattan Invitational.
Anna Phelps, Topeka West
A senior, Phelps is returning All-City pick for the Chargers and a two-time 5A state qualifier. Phelps placed seventh in the city meet last fall and finished 18th in the Centennial League meet before earning a state berth with a ninth-place showing at regionals. Phelps placed 33rd in the 5A state meet.
Emma Schultz, Seaman
Schultz, a senior, is a returning All-City runner for the Vikings, placing sixth in the '20 city meet, ninth in the Centennial League, fifth in 5A regional competition and 50th in the 5A state meet. Schultz finished 14th in the season-opening Manhattan Invitational on Saturday.