Bellefontaine’s Lauren Carter has earned a rare opportunity this summer.

Carter is headed to the Hershey’s National Track and Field meet after a tremendous effort in last weekend’s state meet at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus.

Carter, who is a member of the Bellefontaine Parks and Recreation track and field team, won the 100-meter dash in the girls 9-10 age group. Her winning time of 15:02 was fast enough to earn a spot in the North American Hershey Track and Field Finals on Aug. 4 in Hershey, Pa.

Carter won two events in her age group at the state meet. In addition to the 100, she took first in the 400 with a time of 1:13.67. The young standout also placed fourth in the softball throw with a toss of 85-1.

Winning an event at the state meet is not enough to get a bid to the nationals. Athletes must make a cut from times across the country.

“Lauren has not only amazing athletic ability, but motivation and determination that is quite exceptional for her age,” said Bellefontaine coach Noelle Dunn. “It is a privilege to have her on the team and a delight to coach. We are excited for her to run at nationals.”

Other first-place finishes for Bellefontaine at state came from Tyler Reinhard and Declan Ashcraft in the boys competition.

Reinhard won the softball throw in the 11-12 age group with a toss of 147-9, while Ashcraft won the softball throw in the 9-10 age group with a distance of 108-9.

Approximately 90 kids competed for the Bellefontaine Parks and Recreation track and field team this summer. A total of 24 local athletes qualified and competed in the state meet last Saturday.

“This has been a great season with great kids, and parents who have been so supportive,” added Dunn. “The coaches have really appreciated everyone who participated in this fun program.”

Girls results

In the girls 9-10 age group, the 400 relay of Abby Kite, Lauren Easton, Chloe Reynolds and Meredith McClain took second (1:10), Kite was third in the long jump (6-2 1/4) and McClain was seventh in the 200 (36.7).

In the girls 11-12 age group, Dreona Hughes was second in the softball throw (105-0), Rachel McGill was fourth in the long jump (6-7) and seventh in the 200 (33.19) and Bailey Morales took seventh in the 800 (3:07).

McKenzie Haley competed in the girls 13-14 age group. She finished third in the long jump (6-2) and sixth in the softball throw (74-0).

Boys results

In the boys 9-10 age group, Ethan Morales came in third in the long jump (6-2 1/4), the 400 relay of Matthew Childs, Titus Davie, Colton Costin and Morales was also third (1:12), Declan Ashcraft was fifth in the 100 (15.9) and sixth in the 50 (8.3) and Morales took sixth in the 200 (34.09).

In the boys 11-12 age group, the 400 relay team of Alex Freyhof, Collin Jordan, Garrett Jenkins and Tyler Reinhard was third (1:02.8), Andrew Reinhard was fourth in the long jump (6-9 1/2), Tyler Reinhard was sixth in the 100 (15.3), while Jenkins took seventh in the 800 (3:02.4) and eighth in the 400 (1:20.6).

Robby Weikart rounded out the boys competitors in the 13-14 age group. He was sixth in the 800 (3:16) and 1,600 (6:54).