Amelia Paladino (front right) File Photo by Margot Kelly of Milesplit
On Saturday February 9th, 2013, Amelia (Millie) Paladino, of University High School in Morgantown, WV became only the second junior to run under five minutes, and the first West Virginia High School girl to break five minutes indoors. Paladino running for the WV Flyers ran 4:57.92 to finish third behind senior Jaime Phelan of Laurel Creek, 4:53.89 and senior Therese Haiss of Solon, 4:54.85 at the SPIRE Scholastic HS Showcase at SPIRE Institute (GaREAT Sports Complex) in Geneva, OH.
Since the 70’s, not one West Virginia high school prep female had ever run a sub-5:00 minute 1600 meter run. Then, in April 2007, Kaylyn Christopher of Preston High School ran 4:54.82, which was the fastest West Virginia High School 1600m ever. Just a month later, Kaylyn Christopher and Amber Riley of University both ran sub-5 at the West Virginia Class “AAA” State Track & Field Championship, with Christopher running 4:55.85 and Riley running 4:58.01. It wasn’t until five years later that Maggie Drazba, a junior from St. Marys High School, broke the State Record in a time of 4:51.88 at the Pizza House Invitational on April 13th, 2012. One month later, Drazba would again go sub-5 at the West Virginia Class “A” State Track & Field Championship in 4:56.23.
In all, her 4:57.92 puts her at US#28 for high school girls, WV #3 for high school girls of all-time, fourth WV High School girl to break five minutes for the 1600, only the second WV girl in her junior year of high school to run sub-5, and the first WV High School girl to break five minutes indoors. This puts Millie in a pretty elite class.
The only West Virginia High School Girls to go Sub-5 minutes are:
1. 2012 Maggie Drazba St. Marys 4:51.88 (Outdoors)
2. 2007 Kaylyn Christopher Preston 4:54.82 (Outdoors)
4. 2013 Amelia Paladino University 4:57.92 (Indoors)
3. 2007 Amber Riley University 4:58.01 (Outdoors)
Note: Drazba & Christopher are the only West Virginia High School girls to go sub-5 minutes twice.