Hayley Menix doesn't mind being the center of attention.
The senior for the Northridge High School girls track and field team said competing in field events means every eye at the meet focuses on your performance, but that doesn't bother her.
"Being in a field event can be good or bad, depending on your personality," Menix said. "When you go, you are the focus of everyone's attention. All eyes are on you. It's OK with me because I'm a cheerleader and used to being in front of people."
Menix has qualified for the Division II regional meet each of the past two seasons in the high jump, finishing sixth (5 feet, 1 inch) last season after placing 10th (5-0) as a sophomore.
On March 8, Menix tied for sixth in the high jump (5-0) in the Divisions II-III state indoor meet at the University of Akron. She also was fourth in the long jump (16-7) and eighth in the triple jump (31-1 1/2).
"I use the indoor season as prep for outdoor competition," Menix said. "Some of the people that I went against at state will be many of the same ones that I will see at district and regional. That will be a big help.
"Also, during the indoor season we don't have the 20 mph winds that we have had this spring. It's horrible to jump in that."
Coach Jeff Dingess said Menix has enough natural talent that his main concern has been working on making her stronger.
"Hayley's a gifted athlete and her technique and form are so good that we worked mostly on her strength," Dingess said.
"We have worked on her explosion in the weight room because we wanted to get her (to jump) higher. And we have seen results with her long jump during the indoor season as she beat her (personal record) from last year by 1 foot, 2 inches."
Menix said the jumping events have one common thread: Getting as high as you can on the jump.
"The events have a lot of vertical jumping -- you have to get up in the air as high as you can to travel farther," she said. "In the long jump, you have to get up in the air, keep your head and arms up and, of course, fall forward.
"In the high jump, you need a good vertical jump and have good technique. You have to get your body up and arch your back, but you have to have the right mentality. You can't think about it, just go out and do what you have practiced so many times."
Menix said her goals are to go 5-3 in the high jump and 17-5 in the long jump.
She also runs relays, including the 400 relay with a rotation of her cousin Sydney Menix, Josie Bunstine, Ana Carpenter, Summer Prevost and Ellie Shedloski.
"I like running relays and having a team behind me," said Menix, who plans to compete in track at Otterbein University or Lake Erie College in Painesville.
"It's good to work together as a team instead of just having individual events."
The Vikings competed April 17 at Liberty Union with Granville Christian. Northridge placed second in both the boys and girls meets behind the host Lions.
Menix won the high jump (5-2) and 200 meters (27.97 seconds) and was a member of the winning 400 relay (54.44) with Carpenter, Bunstine and Shedloski.
Softball team wins four of five contests
The softball team was 7-5 overall and 3-4 in the LCL after defeating Licking Heights 2-1 on April 17 and before playing Lakewood on April 19.
The Vikings defeated Newark Catholic 5-2 in an LCL game April 11 as Courtney Mann had four singles and Megan Hatfield, Courtney Legg and Emily Wilson all had two singles. Mikaela Pankuch was the winning pitcher.
Northridge swept a doubleheader against host Olentangy Orange and Thomas Worthington on April 12.
In a 9-6 victory over Thomas, Hatfield was the winning pitcher and led the Vikings at the plate with a home run, single and three RBI. Legg and Pankuch both had three singles and Tori Hart had two singles.
Legg led with a triple, double and single as the Vikings defeated Orange 5-1. Mann had three singles and Hart, who was the winning pitcher, and Pankuch both doubled and singled.
On April 16, Northridge lost to Licking Valley 6-1 in an LCL contest. Legg had three singles and Hunter Adkins had an RBI single.
Through 11 games, the Vikings were batting .379 as a team. Pankuch was hitting .500 (18-for-36) with six doubles and nine RBI, and Mann was batting .455 (20-for-44) with four doubles. Hatfield was hitting .452 (19-for-42) with two home runs and seven RBI, and Hart was batting .444 (16-for-36). Legg was hitting .432 (16-for-37) and Emily Wilson was at .400 (10-for-25).
Baseball team beats Licking Heights
The baseball team was 5-5 overall before playing Newark on April 19 and 3-4 in the LCL after defeating Licking Heights 2-0 on April 17.
The Vikings lost to Licking Valley 4-2 on April 16 in an LCL game as Brad Wilson took the loss.
Northridge lost to Westerville Central 4-0 on April 12 and totaled only three hits. Peyton Miller, Clay Nicks and Morgan Wright all had one single.
On April 11, the Vikings lost to Newark Catholic 4-0 in league play. Wright suffered the loss.