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IHSAA track legend Lynna Irby eyes next chapter, 2020 Olympics

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH-TV) — Recent Pike High School grad Lynna Irby enjoys good company.

Her mother, Nakela Young, grandparents and friends are all a quick mention if you ask Irby about her arsenal. The 3.7 GPA student makes sure they all get a good seat for her favorite time, when there is no company.

“Growing up within the track and field community, a lot of girls never really looked at me outside of Indiana,” Irby said. “The runners from the big states like California, Texas and Florida always said they didn’t know anyone from Indiana.”

Irby quickly turned heads around the country beginning with her sophomore season at Pike. As her legend grew, Irby’s times continued to dwindle. Last summer, she recorded the second fastest 400-meter dash time (51.39) during the under-20 World Junior Championships at Bydgoszcz, Poland.

As for the Indiana High School Athletic Association career, Irby posted a perfect 58-0 record in postseason meets, including the recent completion of four straight state crowns in the 100-, 200- and 400-meter dashes.

“At first, I was just happy it was over because I just felt sick on the day of state due to my nerves,” Irby said. “Now I am starting to process the entire thing. I can’t really believe it.”

Irby departs the Hoosier state this fall for a track scholarship at the University of Georgia. According to Irby, the Bulldogs were the right fit after hearing she would be allowed to run the 100-, 200- and 400-meter dashes. The other big draw was the team’s ability to prepare her for the ultimate goal: the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

“This opportunity means I am going to have to work really hard these next few years to get where I am trying to go,” Irby said. “I know the coaches are going to prepare me as much as they can.”

“I just really hope that I can inspire other girls to work as hard.”

“I don’t mean just on the track but academically and in other sports, too. You don’t get the success you want without the hard work behind it.”

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