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2006 IESA Class AA State Track and Field Meet This Weekend

A staggering total of 2,517 athletes from 211 schools will converge at Corwin Clatt Stadium in the EastSide Centre at East Peoria Friday-Saturday (May 19-20) for the 22nd Class AA Illinois Elementary School Association (IESA) State Final Track and Field Meet.

IESA began the state series in boys track and field in 1932. This will be the 75th year for the boys. IESA began the state series in girls track and field in 1972. This will be the 35th year for girls. A total of 222 member schools entered the 2006 Class AA state series and 95 percent (211) of the schools entering athletes in the qualifying sectionals advanced at least one qualifier to the State Final Meet. There are 1,304 girls competing this weekend and 1,213 boys.

Competition in Class 7AA and Class 8AA for both girls and boys will be in 14 events for seventh graders and 14 events for eighth graders. There will be a grand total of 56 events. Preliminaries and finals are conducted on the same day in the respective field events which are spread over the two days. In the 100-meter dash and hurdles, there will be preliminaries and semifinals on Friday with the finals on Saturday. Timed finals are the format in all other running events. The best times from all the heats or sections in a respective running event determine final places in that event.

There will be eight field events contested Friday, beginning at 1:00 p.m. The running events get under way Friday at 3:00 p.m. Competition Saturday begins at 9:00 a.m. in eight field events, the finals in the 100 and hurdles and the remainder of the running events, including all the relays. The complete time schedule for the weekend can be found on the IESA Web Site www.iesa.org. From the home page, go to the Track and Field icon in the box on top of the home page then click on Class AA Schedule. Also visit the FanZone icon on the home page for information regarding the meet that spectators should know.

Single-session tickets will be on sale at the stadium each day. Tickets are priced at $5.00 for adults and $2.00 for students K-8 and seniors. Gates open at noon Friday and at 8:00 a.m. Saturday.

Here is a look at each of the four meets within the State Final Meet:

7AA Girls

Springfield Franklin's Alex Harden is the only individual defending champion returning. She won the long jump last year with a leap of 16-0. She is the top seeded long jumper this year, coming into the state meet with a 16-0 at the sectional.

Favorites in the chase for the team title are Carlinville, East Peoria Central and East St. Louis Lincoln. Sleepers are Bolingbrook Humphrey and Mahomet-Seymour. Cahokia Wirth took the team title last year with 44 points to runner-up East St. Louis Lincoln's 40.

Carlinville has either the No. 1 or No. 2 seed in seven individual events. In the 100 meter hurdles Maggie Walker posted the second qualifying time of :16.80. Katie Graham is the leader in the 200 with a time of 27.00 and second in the high jump at 4-10. The Warriors. Jennifer Costello and Jenna Wernsing are 1-2 in the pole vault at 8-9 and 8-6, respectively. Kelsey Card is No. 2 in the shot put with a sectional mark of 32-0.5 and is the leader in the discus with a mark of 98-8. The 4 x 200 relay is ranked No. 2 behind East St. Louis Lincoln with a 1:57.10. Lincoln went 1:56.80 in the sectional.

East Peoria Central has the 1-2 runners in the 800 meter run. Charlotte McBrayer is seeded first at 2:29.70 and teammate Autumn Andrews is second at 2:34.10. McBrayer is the No. three seed in the 1600 and teammate Emma Preston is the No. 5 seed. Stacie Hall of Braidwood Reed-Custer is the leader with a sectional mark of 5:36.0. McBrayer is at 5:40.00 and Preston posted a 5:42.00 in the sectional. Central's 4 x 400 relay is the No. 1 seed at 4:28.80. Kelsey Jeter is the No. 4 seed in the discus at 86-5.

East St. Louis Lincoln has Angela Floyd, the No. 2 seed in the 100, Mauricia Hickman the No. 3 seed in the 200, and the No. 1 seed in the 4 x 200 relay.

Danielle Perkins of Mt. Prospect River Trails posted a time of :12.50 in the 100 at the sectional. That's three tenths of a second better than the 7AA record of :12.80. Bolingbrook Humphrey's Victoria McCadd went 1:01.70 in the 400 in the sectional and the 7AA state record is :59.40. Bloomington Junior High has the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds in the shot put with Condia Smith first at 32-2 and Katie Headle at 31-8.5. The 7AA record is 34-4.

8AA Girls

Nine of 11 individual event champions in 7AA last year return in their events this year in the 8AA girls meet. Class 8AA records in the 100 meter hurdles and 100 meter dash are in jeopardy. And the chase for the 2006 team title is wide open.

Chelsey Robinson of East St. Louis Clark won the 100 and 200 last year and returns as a leading contender in them both in 8AA. She posted the No. 2 seed time in both events, running the 100 in :12.70 and the 200 in :26.50 in the sectional. Leader in the 100 is Mone Bullard of Cahokia Wirth with a time of :12.50, just two hundredths off the 8AA record. Jasmine Redd of East St. Louis Lincoln is the No. 1 seed in the 100 hurdles. She won in 7AA last year with a time of :15.40 and qualified from the sectional with a time of :14.70, a tenth of a second better than the 8AA record.

Germantown Hills. Amanda Duvendack won the 800 in 7AA last year in 2:22.93 and returns in the 800 with the No. 2 seed time of 2:22.60. She also took the 7AA 1600 last year in 5:24.59, and qualified seventh in the event this year with a time of 5:40.00. Top qualifier in the 1600 is Katherine Rack of Oak Park Julian in 5:23.00. Rack posted the third-best qualifying time in the 800 in 28.00. The leader is Cassie Lohmeier of East Peoria Central with a 2:20.70. Lohmeier is ranked No. 2 in the 1600 with a sectional time of 5:25.

Tiara Thomas of Decatur Jefferson returns in the 400 but is seeded No. 11 with her 1:03.9. The leader is Susie Lello of Mt. Prospect Lincoln at 1:01.6. Becky Niebrugge of Teutopolis is back in the pole vault. She qualified tenth with a sectional mark of 7-6 and won the 7AA title last year in 7-10. Leading pole vault qualifier is Erica Bertrand of Rochester at 8-7.

Kari Davis of Casey-Westfield returns in the shot put, posting the No. 2 seed of 33-2. She won 7AA last year at 29-10.5. Danielle Bolsen of Pawnee returns in the discus and is ranked No. 7 out of the sectionals with a toss of 95-5. She won 7AA last year at 90-4.

In addition to Oak Park Julian's Katherine Rack, two others have shots at taking a pair of titles. Precious Tillmon of Freeport is the leading qualifier in the shot put with a toss of 34-8.5 in the sectional and is the leading qualifier in the high jump at 5-0. Kelly Steffen of Bloomington Junior High is the No. 2 seed in the 100 hurdles at :15.7 and is the No. 1 qualifier in the long jump coming in at 15-7.5.

7AA Boys

East St. Louis Lincoln guns for its fourth straight 7AA team title and seventh in the last eight years. Lincoln won last year with 60 points. The 92 points Lincoln scored in 2001 is the most team points ever scored in an IESA state meet.

The Tigers are loaded again. Joshua Gates is the No. 5 seed in the 110 hurdles, while Quintarrious Hill is the top seed in the 100 at :11.5 (the 7AA record is :11.5) and seeded fourth in the 200. Teammate Jeremy Nicholson is the No. 3 seed in the 100 and No. 3 seed in the long jump. Demarcus Greene is seeded No. 5 in the shot put.

Then there are the relays. Lincoln's 4 x 100 is one of three teams posting a :49.90 in the sectional. The others are Springfield Grant and Rantoul Eater. The Tigers. 4 x 200 relay is the sectional leader at 1:44.9. The 4 x 400 relay is seeded No. 2 with a 4:10.40 in the sectional just behind the 4:09.10 posted by Cahokia Wirth.

Ryan Mitsos of New Lenox Liberty is the leading qualifier in both the 800 and 1600. He posted a sectional time of 2:17.0 in the 800 and ran 4:59.10 in the 1600. He.ll be challenged in both events by Chris Davis of Lincoln JHS and Austin Shunk of Rochester. Davis has the No. 2 time in the 800 at 2:17.4 and the No. 4 time in the 1600 at 5:06.3. Shunk ranks third in the 800 at 2:17.9 and second in the 1600 at 4:59.5.

8AA Boys

Six athletes who won individual titles in 7AA last year return in 8AA this year. The path to the team title must go through Cahokia Wirth and East St. Louis Lincoln.

Carlinville's Josh Rives won both the 110 meter hurdles and 400 meter dash in 7AA last year. He returns in both events. In the hurdles he is the leading qualifier from the sectionals, posting a :15.0. In the 400 he is the leading qualifier at :53.90.

Travis Mullen of Normal Kingsley returns in the 100 meter dash. He won 7AA last year in :11.94 and qualified nineteenth in the 8AA 100 this year with a time of :11.8. Leading the way in the 100 is Vinson Arterbridge of East St. Louis Lincoln. He went :11.0 in the sectional and the 8AA record is :11.27 set last year by East St. Louis Lincoln's Gregory Edwards. Arterbridge is the leading qualifier in the 200 with a time of :23.60 in the sectional.

Tom Pacey of Paxton-Buckley-Loda won the 1600 in 7AA in 4:52.70 and returns with the top seeded time of 4:52.00 in 8AA this year. Ronald Anthony of East St. Louis Clark took the 7AA high jump at 5-8 and is the No. 12 seed in the 8AA high jump going 5-6 in the sectional. Auburn's James Dambacher took last year's 7AA shot put with a toss of 44-11.75. He is the leading qualifier in that event in 8AA with a 53-7.25 in the sectional. The 8AA record is 54-3.5. Marcus Popenfoose of Algonquin Heinemann is the No. 2 seed in the discus with a sectional mark of 146-6. He took 7AA last year for Huntley with a throw of 139-9. Auburn's Dambacher is seeded No. 3 at 144-10. The discus leader is Nate Joseph of East Peoria Central at 150-10.

The 8AA record in the pole vault is 13-0 set last year by Alex Freshour of Stanford Olympia. Rochester's Matthew Bane is the sectional leader with a mark of 12-6.

Cahokia Wirth and East St. Louis Lincoln have potent relay teams. The team title could be decided by a poor exchange in any one of the three relays. In the 4 x 100, Cahokia Wirth is seeded first at :46.10 and East St. Louis Lincoln is second at :46.70. The 8AA record is :45.96. In the 4 x 200, East St. Louis Lincoln is third-seeded at 1:40.2 behind Kankakee JHS (1:38.10) and East St. Louis Clark (1:38.50). Cahokia Wirth is seeded No. 9 at 1:42.50. In the 4 x 400, its Cahokia Wirth seeded No. 1 (3:46.00) and East St. Louis Lincoln seeded No. 2 (3:48.00).



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