Lynna Irby is going for gold.
The Pike High School sprinter ran the fastest semifinal of the 400 meters Thursday night in the under-17 World Youth Championships at Cali, Colombia.
Her time of 52.77 seconds bettered her previous best of 53.36 and approached the all-time Indiana record of 52.42 set by North Central’s Maicel Malone in 1986.
There were two other semifinals, won by Canada’s Kyra Constantine in 52.88 and Burundi’s Salwa Eia Naser in 52.99. Simone Mason, winner of the U.S. trials, also qualified for Friday’s final by finishing third in her semifinal in 53.48.
Irby has swept the 100, 200 and 400 at the state meet in each of her two high school seasons. She led Pike to the team championship June 6.
The youth worlds have been held biennially since 1999 and are organized by the IAAF, the world governing body for track and field.
Call Star reporter David Woods at (317) 444-6195. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidWoods007.