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EAST PEORIA - East St. Louis Lincoln, as expected, took the first steps toward the boys seventh and eighth grade team titles Friday at Corwin Clatt Stadium in the opening day of the 2005 Illinois Elementary School Association (IESA) Class AA State Final Track and Field Meet.
East St. Louis Lincoln led the two boys divisions in qualifiers in the 100-meter hurdles and 100-meter dash. Last year's 7AA 100 champion Gregory Edwards blasted 100 field and was the fastest qualifier in the 8AA competition. Lincoln's Keith Kimbrow won the 7AA long jump at 20-1 ¼ and was the dominant qualifier in the 100-meter hurdles. The Tigers are poised to roll to the two boys team titles.
In Class 7AA girls team competition, Shorewood Troy took a step toward the team title with 10 points in the high jump and six in the 1600-meter run. In the 8AA girls team chase, Mahomet-Seymour, Oak Park Julian and Cahokia Wirth emerged from the preliminaries as the teams to beat.
The only running event finals conducted Friday were in the 1600-meter run. Tom Pacey of Paxton-Buckley-Loda took the 7AA boys 1600 in 4:52.70. Amanda Duvendack of Germantown Hills won the 7AA girls 1600 in 5:24.59. The 8AA boys 1600 winner was Connor Millar of Rantoul Eater in 4:40.25. Tara Clemens of Bloomington Junior High took a shot at the 8AA girls state record and fell short by a second and a half. She won in 5:09.41 with an explosive kick coming off turn four. The record is 5:07.84 held by Quincy's Ruth Kipping.
Highlights in the first day of field events included:
In the Class 7AA boys pole vault, Jesse Pence of Chillicothe took the title in 10-1. He tried at 10-10 and missed on three tries to break the record of 10-9 held by Josh Hartman of Sandwich Dummer.
In the 7AA girls field events Friday Dejah Lloyd of Shorewood Troy won the high jump at 4-10. She and Claire Bush of Channahon each cleared 4-10, but Lloyd took the title on fewer misses.
More information on IESA Track & Field can be found at http://www.iesa.org/activities/tr/.