Girls Track: Headon hitting new marks at Carroll University

RTHS graduate, U.S Paralympic athlete reflects on freshman season with Pioneers

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Although her freshman season was cut short because of the coronavirus, it’s safe to say that former Rochelle Township High School student-athlete and U.S. Paralympian Aubrey Headon had more than enough fun with the Carroll University women’s track and field program.

After setting world records throughout her high school career, Headon took her talents north to Waukesha, Wisconsin, where she competed in both the 60-meter dash and the long jump with the Pioneers this indoor season. She recorded her fastest sprint of the season during the North Central College Invitational in February, clocking in at 11.36 seconds. Her longest leap took place at the Monmouth Midwest Indoor Invitational in January, where she hit 9 feet 5 ½ inches.

“My first season with Carroll was a lot of fun,” Headon said. “I enjoyed the 60-meter dash the most because I improved my time in almost every meet… I feel that I improved the most in the 60-meter dash and I wish I could have seen how those improvements translated to the 100-meter dash, an event I want to continue getting better in, during the outdoor season.”

Headon ran into some former Rochelle classmates throughout her first collegiate season including track and field standout Mason DeLille, who competes for Carthage College. The two reunited in late January at the Tadd Metzger Invitational, where Headon set her season-best mark in the 55-meter dash at 10.71 seconds. Headon said that one of her favorite freshman moments was unofficially setting the new long jump record for her classification.

Unfortunately, Headon will need to wait until her sophomore campaign to hit the outdoors with her Carroll teammates. Moreover, Headon’s summer season, which would have included an attempt to make the U.S. Paralympic team for the Tokyo Olympics, will have to wait until next year. However, Headon said she remains motivated and optimistic for the future.

“It was nice to see some other Rochelle athletes at our meets,” said Headon, who’s studying exercise science. “I want to thank my coaches Shawn Thielitz, Rob Bennett and Taylor Wilch. I also want to thank my high school coach, Vic Worthington, for his continued support of me.”