EDWARDSVILLE – Edwardsville distance runner Hannah Stuart had a good first showing in the 2019 track and field season, as her team finished second in the 4,000-meter distance medley relay at the Southwestern Illinois Relays, held Friday afternoon and Edwardsville High’s Winston Brown Track and Field Center.

Stuart and her teammates, Abby Korak, Elise Krone, and Kaitlyn Loyet, finished second with a time of 13:16.95.

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“It definitely wasn’t our best,” Stuart said in an interview that followed the race, “but it was alright. We could have done better in a lot of places, but overall, it was an OK race. It was a solid race.”

Still not a bad effort for the first meet of the season, and Stuart knows there are many things she needs to work on.

“Personally, I have a lot of things to work on,” Stuart said. “But, first outdoor performance of the year, and with the wind, I thought it wasn’t a horrible start to the season.”

Stuart is coming off a very successful year for the Tigers’ cross-country team this past fall and feels that she transitions well from cross-country to track.

“It makes me really excited,” Stuart said, “because, in track, you get to run faster events, and do different events that you do in cross-country. And just really exciting for the atmosphere. So, it makes me excited.”

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Stuart and the Tigers have set some very ambitious goals for the 2019 season, almost all of them involving the IHSA state meet, which is held each year at O’Brien Stadium at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston.

“We’re definitely trying to send our (4x800 meters relay team) back to state this year,” Stuart said, “and it would be really nice to get a (4x400 meters) at state also. There are some big team goals, possibly a four-by-one.”

And as for Stuart herself?

“I’m definitely trying to match what I ran last year in the 3,200,” Stuart said, “and in the 16, I’d like to bring my 16 time down.”

And Stuart will work very hard to achieve all the goals that she’s set for herself and her team.

“Yep,” Stuart said with a smile. “Just keep on just following the process.”

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