COLUMBUS - Some surly old man once said youth is wasted on the young.
That adage doesn't apply to Warren G. Harding's girls 4x100-meter relay team of Gariana Bercheni, Chyna Stroud, Aminah Wesley and Justice Richardson.
Wesley is a senior, but the Stroud is a sophomore and Bercheni and Richardson are freshmen.
At the state track and field meet inside Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on Friday, the Raiders foursome had its share of success in the state semifinals.
They have the fifth best time in the relay heading into today's finals, 48.74 seconds. However, WGH got the fourth spot because it was second in its heat.
The top two in each of Friday's semifinals, along with the next five fastest times in each race, advance to today's finals.
"The thing we were worried about is their lack of experience at this level," WGH track and field coach Charles Penny said. "That isn't a bad thing. You don't know what to expect. That's also a bad thing. You don't know what to expect.
"I think they handled it very well."
Penny said Harding's rigorous schedule prepared his team for moments like this.
"We had a couple of small mishaps, but they showed their maturity through," he said. "Our schedule prepares our kids for a very high level. It doesn't matter what age you are. I think it showed with so many young girls on that team."
Unfortunately, the boys 4x100 and 4x400 teams did not advance to today's finals.
Nonetheless, Penny said his boys and girls gained many lessons that carry on into other sports.
"Those kids learn to compete at a high level against great competition as individuals," Penny said. "A lot of these boys are going to go off and play football. They are going to be so much better mentally prepared for those one-on-one battles next year on the football field and/or on the court for boys or girls basketball whatever team sport they want to do.
"I think they've developed a tremendous amount of mental toughness with the competition you have here, competing for a state title and at a very high level."