Pantlitz sprints into Junior Olympics

Abigail Pantlitz received an email from her coach at Liberty University earlier this summer. He wanted to remind her that it was important to stay in track shape over the summer ahead of her freshman season.

The Navarre sprinter laughed about it, knowing she was doing just that already.

“I told him I’m doing AAU track, so I’ll be in good shape,” Pantlitz said.

Funny thing is, until this summer, Pantlitz had no idea what AAU track even was. Then she talked with Antenney Hemingway, who spent this past spring as an assistant on the Raider track team and was sold on giving it a shot with the Golden Elite Track and Field Club out of Pensacola.

She took that shot and ran with it. Literally.

Pantlitz has qualified for the AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) Junior Olympics later this month at North Carolina A&T’s Irwin Belk Track in Greensboro, earning a spot as the Region Nine 100-meter dash champion.

Pantlitz crossed the line in 12.13 to win the event in the regional meet in Tallahassee.

“She’s a special athlete,” said Hemingway, a coach with the club.

Read the full article in the July 18 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at for as little as $38 per year.

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