Track-and-Field Sensation Ellie Cooley Inspires Both in and Out of the Discus Circle

Writer / Natalie Gargiulo
Photography Provided

Carmel High School student-athlete Ellie Cooley has been making a name for herself and shattering records in Hamilton County. Her journey in the sport of trackandfield discus throwing is nothing short of extraordinary.Ellie Cooley

The 14-year-olds journey in track and field is deeply rooted in her family’s history. Many of her family members were involved in trackandfield events during their middle and high school years, including her mom and coach, Courtney Cooley, who made it to the IHSAA regional in discus during her sophomore and junior years at Westfield High School. This served as an inspiration for Ellie to follow in their footsteps. Her connection to the sport began when she tried out for her school’s track team in the sixth grade.

When I started middle school, I wanted to try out because some of my family members were pretty good at track and field as well,Ellie says. I had thrown a little bit before sixth grade, but nothing serious. That’s when I started getting serious about it.

Ellie‘s introduction to track and field was nothing short of spectacular. She not only made her sixthgrade team, but also went on to win the mock meet, earning her a spot as a dedicated thrower. This marked the beginning of her journey as she went undefeated in discus events during the sixth, seventh and eighth grade – an accomplishment that had never been achieved before in Hamilton County for middle school. She maintained her dominance throughout her middle school years.

Ellie CooleyIt was one of those things when she kept winning, we didn’t want to talk about it because we didn’t want to jinx it,Courtney says.

She went on and was also awarded the Robert L. Theil Scholar Athlete Award, the highest award given by the athletic department at Clay Middle School.

I remind myself that I can always improve once Ive done something great I can always do it better,Ellie says. Once I got the school record I didn’t want to end there. I wanted to keep making the record better and better, and I wanted to keep winning because I knew that I could always keep improving.

One of Ellie’s most impressive accomplishments is her ability to not only set records, but also continually improve upon them. Her furthest discus throw is 115 feet, 10.5 inches.

Ellie’s journey extends beyond track and field. She is not only an outstanding athlete, but also a dedicated fundraiser to the Arthritis Foundation, a cause close to her heart due to her sister’s condition. She is also a black belt in taekwondo, and has a 4.0 grade point average.

As Ellie transitions to Carmel High School, she brings with her a legacy of excellence from her middle school track and field career. Her goals for the future include making it to the regionals meet and eventually breaking her high school’s discus record.

For ninth grade I’d like to be in the top two on the team, and get to compete insectionals,she says. But in ninth grade I will notEllie Cooley be concerned with winning or beating any records. I just want to be the best that I can be.

Ellie‘s journey in middle school track and field is a story of talent, perseverance and family support. Her remarkable accomplishments, from setting records to her commitment to fundraising, are a testament to her character and determination. As she embarks on her high school trackandfield career, all eyes will be on this rising star, eager to see what records she will set and break in the years to come.

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