It was an easy pick this week, with the junior from Gresham, Ore. spearing a national record with her first competitive throws of the season. She has arrived at the record -- joining her brother in the boys javelin -- with half of her high school career still to go.
Haley Crouser took only two throws last Friday at the Aloha Relays in Beaverton, Ore. She went 166-5 on what was essentially a warm-up throw, and then hit 181-2 to break the record by four and a half feet.
Up next is a Friday night showdown against open and college competition at the Oregon Relays in Eugene, and a chance to edge closer to the Olympic B standard of 193-7.
In attendance at the Aloha Relays was Newberg High coach Joe Boutin, who coached Lynda Hughes to the 1984 Olympics, as well as All-American Sarah Malone and U.S. record setter Rachel Yurkovich (2005, 176-5).
Asked to compare Yurkovich with Crouser, Boutin said there were strong similarities.
"Haley is stronger," Boutin said. "Especially in her legs. She can do things in the hurdles and the shot put that Rachel couldn't do."