If boys track and field meets were scored by words, Christian Goines would be near the bottom of the points chart for fourth-ranked Center Grove.
Goines quietly goes about his business for the Trojans in his specialty, the 110-meter high hurdles. All arms and legs at 6-foot-5, 170 pounds, the senior has proven to be an excellent high jumper and long jumper, too.
He recently won all three events at the Johnson County Meet at Franklin, where he crossed the line in 14.84 seconds in the hurdles, jumped as high as 6 feet and as far as 20 feet, 11½ inches.
Track has been the sports focus of Goines for half his life.
“Track has been my favorite sport since I was 9 years old,” Goines said. “One of my favorite things about it is how individual it is. You want to do your best for the team, but you also have a bunch of personal standards that you’re trying to achieve.”
After qualifying for the 2016 IHSAA Boys Track and Field State Finals in the high jump, tying for 21st-place with a top effort of 6-2, Goines — who continued to compete throughout the summer in assorted USA Track and Field meets — has established bigger goals for himself.
Goines’ objective is to win the 110 hurdles and place in the top three in the high jump at this season’s state meet, scheduled for June 2 at Indiana University’s Robert C. Haugh Track & Field Complex.
Should he be there as a long jumper, too, well, that’s great. The busier, the better.
“I actually like being rushed,” Goines said. “I’ve had some of my best PRs when I’m rushing to get a jump in before the hurdles.”
Center Grove’s reputation for hurdlers is well known. Conner Stapleton won the 300 intermediate hurdles at the 2013 state finals, only to be succeeded at the top level of the awards podium by teammate Justin Veteto a year later.
Should Goines get his wish, he would be the program’s first titlist in the 110 or its pre-1980 predecessor, the 120-yard high hurdles.
Goines carries a 3.9 grade-point average. He will major in accounting at Indiana University and be part of the Hoosier men’s track and field program.
Trojans coach Eric Moore has been impressed with the progress Goines has made over the course of his high school track career.
“Christian has really developed in the program. When he started in middle school he wasn’t the best kid ever, but he practiced five events and never went away from that,” Moore said. “Last year I think he grew nine inches; I don’t know. It’s unbelievable how much taller he got.
“He’s probably the best (technical) hurdler I’ve ever coached at Center Grove. He’s not quite as fast and strong. When he runs the hurdles it looks like he just goes through the hurdle.”
Moore jokes that he’s heard Goines say 15 words in the four years he’s coached him. Maybe.
But if Center Grove is to finish in the top four in the team standings at the state finals for the sixth time in seven years, the senior will be one of the main reasons why.
“Christian is a very good athlete, but understand, a much better person than people realize because he is so quiet,” Moore said. “Just a very gifted kid and one of those kids you would trust with everything you have.”
Name: Christian Goines
Family: Parents Monty and Beth; sister Haley, 16; brother Jalen, 15
Favorite TV show: “Stranger Things”
Favorite food: Fettuccine alfredo with chicken
Favorite movie: “Remember the Titans”
Favorite athlete: Devon Allen
Favorite team: Indiana Pacers