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Late-season races often offer moments of clarity.
Like, for instance, the example of Nashville Martin Luther King's Miles Ally.
The double-winner from the Tennessee outdoor championships has long been known as one of his state's top distance talents. Few knew just how good he was outside of it, though.
But the NC State University signee will enter the RunningLane Track Championships this Saturday in Madison, Alabama, having beaten one of his strongest competitors, Ethan Strand, just this past weekend.
Strand hadn't lost a single race at 1,600m or the mile distance until that point. Ally hadn't either -- neither, by the way, won the overall race, as that went to Newbury Park's Colin Sahlman in 4:05.79.
Ally was second overall. Strand was eighth. Notably, these two will run-it-back in ensuing weeks.
Overall, the Alabama-based distance carnival is set to be one of the most electric all-season, with an atmosphere befitting of the spectacle.
Anything can happen between athletes who don't lose often.
Both will race at the mile one week later.
If the conditions allow for it, we could see some momentous performances on Friday and Saturday.
But that won't be all. A list that currently extends to eight boys in the field have already broken 9 minutes for 3,200m, and we know for certain the group is aiming for performances under 8:50.
The girls 3,200m will feature Michigan state distance triple winner Audrey Dadamio, who will battle with Florida's best, Caroline Wells and Caroline Lehman, along with Pennsylvania standout Jenna Mulhern and Alabama's Crawford West.
One big storyline to watch will be Sadie Engelhardt. The 14-year-old from California will enter with a chance to lower her best of 4:44.60, which she produced this weekend at the Music City Track Carnival.
The world age group record is held by the famed Mary Decker, who went 4:40 .1 in 1973.