FRANKLIN — Among the storylines of Tuesday’s girls track and field regional is the unmistakable brightness of New Palestine’s future.

Freshmen Kaylin Casner and Jordan Reid led the Dragons to a fourth-place finish. Coach Kyle Ralph’s squad finished with 44 points, well behind No. 1 Warren Central, runner-up Franklin Central and third-place Center Grove.

Overall, it proved to be a productive evening for Hancock County.

Casner produced an impressive victory in the 1,600-meter run by finishing in a time of 5:12.37 in a race she controlled from the outset. Reid came in second in the 100-meter dash and third in the 200.

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Both advance to the state finals at Indiana University on June 3.

“Jordan and I have known each other for a long time, actually. We used to play other sports like softball together,” Casner said. “Before I run it’s always a little intimidating, but once I get going I just start running my own race.”

Headed to state from Greenfield-Central will be Jennifer Flora, a second-place finisher in the discus. Her teammate, Crystal Peterson, took third in the 300-meter hurdles to make it, as well.

A prime candidate for a call-back for the state finals is Cougars’ senior pole vaulter Emily Jones, who placed fourth at regional after clearing 10 feet, 8 inches.

“My personal best is a 10-9, so I was an inch below,” said Jones, who placed 25th at state last June. “I was going for 11 feet, which would have been a PR (personal record) and a new school record. My coach said he thinks 10-8 should be called back, so I’m hoping it is.

“I definitely hope to place a lot higher if I do go back.”

Also for Greenfield-Central, junior Sydney Cook was fourth in the 800, Flora sixth in the shot put, sophomore Mackenzie Polster tied for eighth in the high jump and Peterson took eighth in the 100 hurdles. Also eighth was Cougars’ sophomore Hannah Burkhart in the discus.

New Palestine senior Lillie Cain came in fifth in the shot put and seventh in the discus. Victoria Crowder, a sophomore, wound up fourth in the 400-meter dash for the Dragons in 58.92 seconds.

In Casner’s other event, the 800, she finished fifth.

In the 4×400 relay, the Dragons crossed the start-finish line fourth in a time of 4:04.74. Greenfield Central came in 13th in 4:17.87.

New Pal freshman Reid looks forward to what will be her first state finals.

“It’s just great because I came in here with nothing to lose,” she said. “New Pal being such a small town, nobody really knows about us. For us to kind of put our name out there. It’s just fun. Just a great experience.”

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Mike Beas is a sports writer for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at