A Jefferson Middle School sixth grader announced her presence in track and field in a huge way earlier this month.
Eleven-year-old Nyla Flowers, participating with the Hattiesburg Flyers, placed in the Top 10 nationally in two events at the AAU Junior Olympics (Aug. 1 through Aug. 7) in Houston, cementing her place as arguably the top track star in Mississippi her age. In the hurdles, she placed fifth out of 56 runners from all across the country, and she finished eighth out of 80 in the high jump. She also competed in the long jump but didn’t place among the top competitors.
She took the loss in the long jump hard but was encouraged by her family, coaches and support team. The encouragement allowed her to regroup and perform exceptionally well in the high jump.
Flowers began running with the Hattiesburg Flyers in May 2019, but there was not a competitive season in 2020 because of the pandemic. The Flyers are coached by Charles Green, Jamal Porter and Romesha Porter.
The first time Flowers practiced the hurdles, Green knew she would be perfect for it because of her grow spurt, which saw her sprout to 5-foot-5 at just 11 years old.
The AAU Junior Olympics capped off the season Flowers, which saw her win several medals. Her dream is to attend LSU before turning pro and ultimately compete for the United States in the Olympics.
Flowers is the daughter of Nollie Brown and Alexandria Flowers.