Brittany Kelly couldn’t compete in the decathlon. That event is reserved for the boys, but she probably could compete anyway.
The Northeast High track star just completed her sophomore season and added one more event to a schedule full of competition. She included the long jump into her repertoire and now, in addition to the pentathlon, Kelly competes in eight events.
And when she isn’t competing at the high school level, she’s out in the summer time performing for her AAU team the Tennessee Athletic Project. And if she isn’t doing that, Kelly is busy thinking of ways to get better.
“I’m striving to win as many state titles as I can,” Kelly said. “I know in order to so that, I’ve got to push myself to the limits. For me, track season never ends but I kind of like that. I’m always trying to get better.”
As talented as Kelly is, its hard to see how much better she can get although everyone will tell you there’s room for improvement. But its scary to think just want the results will be when Kelly finds that stride. She’s already considered the top female all-around athlete in the city and has the credentials to prove it, including placing at state two consecutive years.
And now, for the second straight year, Kelly has been honored by The Leaf-Chronicle. After being named the girls’ track athlete of the year last year, Kelly has been named The Leaf-Chronicle All Area Girls Field Athlete of the Year for this past spring. The award is voted on by the newspaper’s sports staff while the All Area Track Team is selected by area athletics directors.
“To get to my ultimate goal (of winning state titles) I know I need help,” Kelly said. “I need the support of my coaches, my family and my teammates. When our (Lady Eagles) team is out there, we’re all out there supporting each other. There’s no one person out there doing it all for the entire team. It’s all of us.”
Kelly competed in the 100 and 300 hurdles as a freshman at Spring Fling and returned to Murfreesboro this year in both events. But she added the long jump and the pentathlon, after not qualifying in the event last year. Kelly was able to seize the moment last month, finishing third overall in the pentathlon. She also finished third in the 300 hurdles.
“She likes the pressure to some degree,” Northeast coach Christina Webb said. “There’s still some maturity she will grow into but she understands there’s a lot of expectations on her and she’s competitive enough to accept it and she uses it as fuel and is challenged by it. And she likes the multi-events.”
Kelly took fifth at state in the long jump.
“The long jump is something I wanted to try this year,” she said. “The pentathlon is kind of a love-hate relationship. It’s tough and it’s hard but I love doing it because there’s so many challenges to it. If you score poorly in one event, then you have the opportunity to pick that score up by doing well in another.”
Last year in the hurdle events at state, Kelly took sixth place. This past spring she finished third. If that trend continues, next year she’ll be standing in first place on the medal stand with a state title symbol around her neck.
“That’s the goal,” she said.