Byron's Kreitinger born to work, succeed

Byron junior middle-distance runner Taylor Kreitinger is one of the top runners and soccer players in the state. Kreitinger’s goal this track season is to capture the state 800-meter title.

About the only area that Taylor Kreitinger lacks effort is in keeping her room, bathroom and car tidy.

In fact, in those areas, this otherwise ultra type-A daughter of Sharon and Troy Kreitinger is a borderline disaster.

It can be enough to drive them crazy. It’s also enough to provide them a bit of relief. At least it’s evidence that their high-achieving daughter doesn’t have to knock everything out of the park.

The Byron High School junior was named all-state in soccer this past season and in track finished second in the 800- and 1,600-meter runs at last year’s state meet. She’s also a member of the National Honor Society, hopes one day to become a doctor and is active in her community.

"I have a lot of friends who have the same expectations of themselves," Taylor said. "I use that as motivation, to do the best I can."


Well, the best she can in maybe every area but one.

"Taylor drives a five-passenger car," Sharon said. "But she’s got so much stuff in there — sports equipment, homework, clothes, shopping things — that often she’s the only person who can squeeze in there."

Taylor’s bedroom has also been known to overflow. There have been times when the Byron sports and academic star hasn’t even left space for herself.

"Sometimes Taylor will end up sleeping on the couch because she can’t even get in there," Sharon said. "It can be a struggle, but last year we backed off her a bit. When it gets to the breaking point, she does something about it."


In Taylor’s defense, there are only so many hours in a day and the oldest of Sharon and Troy’s two children has pretty much all of them accounted for, the posted notes she dots her room with mapping things out.

That includes those hours when most are sleeping.

"Taylor studies until about 1 in the morning, then gets up at 5:30 (a.m.) for her own workout," said Sharon, relieved at least that her daughter finds time for a nap after returning from Byron afternoon soccer or track practices.


"She’s an incredible worker," Byron track and field coach Charro Coleman said. "She’s also really humble. She does what she does and doesn’t make any noise about it."

What Taylor has done this spring — when it comes to track — is narrow her focus. Those second-place finishes at state in the 800 and 1,600 were great and all, but she wants more.

"I’m really competitive in sports," Taylor said. "I want to win."


That in mind, she’s shed the 1,600 in favor of becoming completely locked into her favorite race, the 800.

"I’m going to miss the 1,600," Taylor said, "but I like the 800 way more. I like the faster pace to it and that there isn’t so much time to think."

Her goal is to come home with a first-place medal draped around her neck in early June.

Taylor ran a 2:13.36 800 in last year’s state preliminaries, which would have been good enough to win the Class A or AA titles had she done it in the finals.


But she was dogged by running the 1,600 finals just one hour before running the 800 finals, and settled for a 2:16.67, just missing the Class A title. Just behind her in third place was good friend and fellow Section 1A star Nell Graham of Triton, in 2:18.27.

This season there will be no being dogged. Taylor is fixed on the 800’s top state prize, as only she can be.

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