3Peat Watch: Cardinal Ritter posts absurd district entries

Heading into the season, there was little doubt that Cardinal Ritter's girls team would be the favorite for a third straight Class 5 title. But when MSHSAA released the district assignments during the third week of the season, many were remarking on how there was one district that could essentially be a state meet two weeks before the actual state meet. 

The Class 5 District 2 is quite probably the most competitive district meet the state has ever seen. With the back-to-back state champions on the girls side, in addition to three other teams in Class 5 on Championship Factor (John Burroughs, MICDS, Westminster Christian), plus the usual powerhouse suspects Hazelwood Central, Pattonville, and Parkway West, this lineup is the kind of lineup that amplifies the calls for District/Sectional plus qualifying standards. 

What stands out the most among all the entries wasn't A'Laji Bradley's 100, 200, 400 attempt, or Aaliyah Elliott going for the 100 dash/100 hurdles/long jump/triple jump quadruple, or Julia Ray in the 1600/3200, or the top 3 girls in the 100 hurdles being under 14.08, but the absolute destruction of the district standards that the Cardinal Ritter girls put on this season. 


Let's start with the 100 and 200 meter dashes. The Class 5 standard for each of these races were posted at 12.51 and 25.69, respectively. In the 100 meter dash, Ritter was able to enter reigning individual champion Aniyah Brown (11.86), Alexis Taylor (12.10), Brooklyn Brady (12.27), and Kayla Watkins (12.42). These four are seeded 1st, 3rd, 5th, and 6th, respectively, so it's not a sure thing that they will all qualify through to the sectional meet, especially with Bradley and Elliott in the field, but that final should be fun to watch. 

Junior Aniyah Brown is the reigning Class 5 state champion in the 100 and 200-meter dashes.

In the 200, the Lady Lions were able to enter Brown (24.30), Charlye Moody (25.08), Kyndall Spain (25.09), and Brady (25.35). They are seeded 1st, 4th, 5th, and 6th making it hard to see all four of them qualify through again, but it should not be totally out of the question. Regardless, it appears that it will take a 12.2 and 25.1 just to qualify to the Class 5 Sectional 1 meet, marks that would have earned you all-state honors in 2022.

Senior Charlye Moody placed 4th at state in the 200 and 2nd in the 400 in 2022. She has a 400 PR of 56.40.


Let's head to the relays now. 

We already noted the who's who of teams that is this District 2 meet, but that won't stop Ritter from entering the top squads in the 4x100, 4x200, and 4x400 meter relays. Not only that, but they are well clear of their next closest competitors. 

The 4x100 relay is seeded at a 45.89, a state record mark from the Arcadia Invitational. It's the only 4x100 mark under 46 seconds in state history and will put them nearly 4 seconds ahead of the next closest squad (Hazelwood Central). They were state champions in this event in 2022. 

The 4x200 relay is another one that, though it is still 3 seconds off the state record of 1:37.85, is still 6 seconds clear of the next closest team (Hazelwood Central, again). The Lady Lions posted a 1:40.44 mark to dominate the field at the Kirkwood/Dale Collier Invitational a week and a half ago. They were state runner-ups in this event in 2022.

The 4x400 relay is the furthest ahead of the next closest competitor as, with their 3:50.44, they have dwarfed Pattonville's impressive 4:03.14 mark, and put themselves another 15 seconds clear of the fourth seed, for a total of 28 seconds of advantage over the projected qualifying field. They ran a season best of 3:46.46 last season and dominated the state meet in this event. Expect 30 points to come from the Cardinal Ritter relays as they could throw it into cruise control and still make it happen easily.