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2005 IESA Class AA State Track and Field Meet This Weekend

Some 2,316 athletes from 203 schools will converge at Corwin Clatt Stadium in the EastSide Centre at East Peoria Friday-Saturday (May 20-21) for the 20th 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 73rd year for the boys. IESA began the state series in girls track and field in 1972. This will be the 33rd year for girls. A total of 219 member schools entered the 2005 Class AA state series and 95 percent of the schools entering athletes in the qualifying sectionals advanced at least one qualifier to the State Final Meet.

Competition 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 conducted 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 each day. The best times from all the heats or sections in a respective running event determine final places in that event.

There will be 12 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. The complete time schedule for the weekend, and the heats, sections and flights for the different events, can be found on the IESA Web Site 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 and Class AA State Qualifiers lines.

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.

Nine schools will have more than 30 athletes competing this weekend. Mahomet-Seymour leads the way with 41. Next is Shorewood Troy with 38. The others are Cahokia Wirth 36, Antioch 34, Dunlap 33, East St. Louis Lincoln 33, Frankford Hickory Creek 33, Arlington Heights South 31 and Chatham Glenwood 31.

Several communities with multiple member schools are sending large contingents to the meet. Joining East St. Louis Lincoln with its 33 competitors is East St. Louis Younge with 26. Joining Frankfort Hickory Creek with its 33 competitors is Frankfort Summit Hill with 23. Galesburg Churchill is bringing 25 athletes and Galesburg Lombard 16. There will be 58 athletes from Normal, with Chiddix 11, Kingsley 25 and Parkside 22. From Springfield, there will be 103 athletes with Franklin at 21, Grant 23, Jefferson 11, Lincoln 10, St. Agnes 21 and Washington 17.

Meet Referee will be Jay Marshall of Richmond. Head Field Event Referee is Jerry Catton of Henry. Girls Starter is John Halterman of Montgomery. Boys starter will be Carroll Hickenbottom of Dallas City.

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

7AA Girls

Cahokia Wirth and East St. Louis Lincoln on paper are the favorites to claim the Class 7A Girls Meet team title, but the race for the first place team trophy is really wide open. Eureka could be the sleeper. No one team has an abundance of qualifiers.

Cahokia Wirth's three relays all qualified as the No. 1 seed in the respective events. Wirth also qualified seven individuals including Rontacial Rogers the No. 3 seed in the 100-meter dash and teammate Monet Bullard, the No. 5 seed in the 100.

East St. Louis Lincoln is led by Jasmine Redd, No. 1 seed in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of :15.6. Teammate Rochelle Goree is No. 2 seed in the 200-meter dash at :26.9. And Timeka Watkins is No. 2 seed in the 100 at :12.6 and No. 14 seed in the 200 at :28.2.

The only double No. 1 seed is Chelsey Robinson of East St. Louis Clark. She is the leader in the 100 at :12.5 and the 200 at :26.5. Another threat for a double is Precious Tillmon of Freeport in the high jump and shot put. Tillmon leads the qualifiers in the shot put with a sectional best toss of 30-5. She is the No. 2 seed in the high jump at 4-10 where seven qualifiers in the event cleared 4-10 or better in the sectional.

In the pole vault, where 29 girls have qualified for the meet, Chelsea Eversole of Pana JHS is the No. 1 seed at 7-8. Right behind at 7-6 is Ashley Beck of Farmington Central. The 7AA girls record is 9-3. In the long jump, Lauren Hollinshead of Williamsville went 16-8 in the sectional for the No. 1 seed. Demi Vanderwal, who led Springfield St. Agnes to the 7A Girls State Basketball Tournament title in December, went 16-3 = in the sectional for the No. 2 seed. The 7AA state record is 17-4.

In the distance events, Amanda Duvendack of Germantown Hills is the No. 1 seed in the 800-meter run at 2:25.2 and the No. 5 seed in the 1600-meter run at 5:44.0. Top-seeded in the 1600 is Rylie Sullivan of Chatham Glenwood. Megan Petty of Shorewood Troy is the No. 3 seed in both events posting a 2:32.0 in the 800 in the sectional and a 5:4l.8 in the 1600.

8AA Girls

Nine of last year's 11 individual champions in the 7AA meet return this year in their respective events, and five of them are the No. 1 seed. Defending champion Cahokia Wirth has qualified seven individuals and all three relays and is the team to beat.

Wirth's 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 relays are No. 2 seeded respectively, while the 4 x 200 relay posted the No. 18 seed in the sectional.

The seventh grade champions from last year returning as the No. 1 seed in their events this year are: Megan Emmons of Green Valley Midwest Central in the pole vault at 8-6; Diane Defoe of Chatham Glenwood in the high jump at 5-2 along with Wauconda's Lauren Mead; Brittany Smith of Oak Park Julian in the shot put at 35-8; Jen Guy of Normal Parkside in the 400-meter dash at :58.6; and Stephanie Brown of Downs Tri-Valley in the 800-meter run at 2:23.9. Julian's Smith is the No. 3 seed in the discus at 99-4.

Glenwood's Defoe also won the 100-meter hurdles in 7AA last year and returns as the No. 3 seed at :16.2. Leader is Jeree Dewalt of East St. Louis Lincoln at :15.8. Abbie Wooten of Paris Mayo won the 7AA discus last year and returns in 2005 as the No. 17 seed at 88-3. She won the discus last year with a toss of 95-6. The top seed this year is Keri Leach of Stanford Olympia at 100-8.

Adele-Marie Buis of River Forest Roosevelt won the long jump last year in 7AA at 15-5 > and returns this year at 14-6 and is the No. 28 seed in 8AA. Alyssa Carlson of Ottawa Shepherd won the 7AA 200-meter dash last year and is the No. 7 seed this year at :26.9.

In the distance events, Tri-Valley's Stephanie Brown and Tara Clemens of Bloomington JHS are on a collision course in the 800 and 1600-meter runs. Brown is top-seeded in the 800 at 2:23.9 and Clemens is No. 2 seed at 2:25.6. In the 1600, Clemens is top-seeded at 5:16.0 and Brown is No. 3 seed at 5:26.0. Second-seeded in the 1600 is Shelbie Pettie of Sherrard JHS at 5:24.8, and she is No. 4 seed in the 800 at 2:27.4.

7AA Boys

Defending team champion East St. Louis Lincoln is the odds-on favorite to win its third straight 7AA boys team title and fifth in the last six years. The Tigers rolled up 77 points to take the 2004 crown and could surpass that total this year based on sectional qualifying. The Class 7AA boys team scoring record is 92 points by the Tigers in 2001. Points are awarded for the first eight places in each event on the following basis: 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1.

East St. Louis Lincoln has 11 individual events qualifiers and two relays, and most of them are the top-seeded entries in the event. The 4 x 100-meter relay and the 4 x 400-meter relays are both seeded No. 1. The 4 x 100 relay posted a sectional time of :48.3, almost two seconds ahead OF No. 2 seed Rantoul Eater at :50.1. The Tigers. 4 x 400 relay blasted to a 3:58.8 in the sectional to earn the No. 1 seed over No. 2 seed East St. Louis Younge at 4:01.7.

Lincoln has the top 2 seeds in the long jump in Keith Kimbrow at 19-0 and Rodney Craig at 18-9. Kimbrow is the No. 1 seed in the 110 hurdles at :14.6 and teammate Kenneth McCaster is seeded No. 9 at :17.4. Kimbrow is seeded No. 1 in the 200-meter dash in :23.3 and Craig is No. 2 at :24.7. Craig is the No. 4 seed in the 100 and teammate Vinson Artebridge is No. 3 seed at :11.6. Travis Mullin of Normal Kingsley is the No. 1 seed in the 100 at :11.2. There are 21 pole vaulters and the sectional leader is Jesse Pence of Chillicothe at 10-10. The 7AA boys record is 10-9. Kyle Briney of Rushville went 9-3 in the sectional and is the No. 2 seed.

Marcus Popenfoose of Huntley and James Dambacher of Auburn are expected to battle for the discus and shot put titles. Popenfoose is the No. 1 seed in the discus at 129-11 and Dambacher is No. 3 at 123-8. The 7AA record is 144-11. Dambacher is the No. 1 seed in the shot put at 43-5 and Poppenfoose is No. 3 at 39-8. The 7AA record is 50-11.

Blue Mound Meridian's Trent Swigert is top-seeded in the 1600-meter run by seven seconds. Swigert ran 5:02.0 in the sectional. Andrew Glick of Pekin Edison went 5:09.0. Tom Pacey of Paxton-Buckley-Loda is No. 3 seed at 5:09.5. In the 800-meter run, Pacey is No. 2 seed at 2:16.0 behind Seth Bowman of Sullivan at 2:15.2. Glick is No. 17 seed at 2:24.6.

8AA Boys

Defending team champion Bloomington Junior High will be hard-pressed to hold off East St. Louis Lincoln in the chase for the 8AA boys team championship. Bloomington JHS won the 2004 8AA team title with 59 points and East St. Louis Lincoln finished third with 31 points.

East St. Louis Lincoln has qualified 10 individuals and two relays in the 8AA boys meet. On paper, the Tigers seem headed to scoring 77 points based on their seed positions following the sectionals. Bloomington Junior High qualified individuals and no relays.

The 4 x 200 and 4 x 400-meter relays from East St. Louis Lincoln both qualified as the No. 2 seed. In the 4 x 200, Lincoln posted a 1:40.3 behind leading Dunlap at 1:40.2. In the 4 x 400, the Tigers posted a 3:48.6 behind the sizzling 3:46.4 from Cahokia Wirth. The No. 3 seed in the 4 x 400 is Blue Mound Meridian at 3:49.0.

East St. Louis Lincoln's strength in the individual events is in the short races. Last year's 7AA 110-meter hurdle champion Kraig Appleton is the No. 1 seed in that event at :14.6. Teammate Roderick Oliver is No. 2 at :14.9. Oliver is the No. 4 seed in the 400-meter run at :54.3 and teammate Gregory Edwards, last year's 7AA winner, is No. 2 at :53.2. Edwards is top-seeded in the 100-meter dash at :11.0 and he won the 7AA title in the event last year. Teammate Tommie Hopkins is No. 4 seed at :11.5. Appleton is the No. 1 seed in the 200-meter dash at :23.1. Walter Fisher of Bolingbrook Brooks won the 7AA 200 last year and comes into the 8AA event as the No. 7 seed from the sectional at :24.6.

Other champions from last year's 7AA meet qualifying for 8AA competition this year are: T. J. Bouillon of Carlinville in the pole vault as the No. 3 seed at 11-0; Jacob Waltrip of Jacksonville Turner in the high jump as the No. 15 seed at 5-5; Zachary Ochs of Mahomet-Seymour in the shot put as the No. 2 seed at 47-10 =; Derrick Diggins of Galesburg Lombard as the No. 1 seed in the long jump at 20-9; Kentaries Little of East St. Louis Clark in the discus as the No. 6 seed at 142-1; Josh Roig of Bloomington Junior High as the No. 5 seed in the 800-meter run in 2:11.8; and Kevin Clark of Arlington Heights South as the No. 7 seed in the 1600-meter run at 4:53.0.

In the distance races, Parker Thompson of Tremont has a chance for a double. He is the leading qualifier in both the 800-meter run and the 1600-meter run. Thompson went 2:09.7 in the 800 and 4:48.0 in the 1600 in the sectional. He will face stiff challenges in both races. In the 800, the top eight qualifiers are within three seconds of one another. In the 1600 the top five are a mere 4.5 second s apart.

Records in the 8AA boys pole vault, 110-meter hurdles and 100-meter dash could fall over the weekend. The pole vault record is 12-2 and top-seeded Alex Freshour of Stanford Olympia went 12-7 in the sectional. The hurdle record is :14.74 in Fully Automatic Time (FAT) and last year's 7AA champion Kraig Appleton of East St. Louis Lincoln went :14.6 in the sectional. Last year's 7AA champion in the 100, Gregory Edwards of East St. Louis Lincoln posted an :11.0 in the sectional and Pekin Broadmoor's Billy Ashby went :11.2 for the No. 2 seed in the event. The 100 8AA record is :11.41 and the all-time boys mark is :11.0.

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