The best athletes from 16 teams across the Chicago North Shore gathered on Thursday night in an effort to beat their personal bests and qualify for state. Although the weather conditions were less than ideal for an evening in May-- 50 degrees and windy-- the meet managed to garner 43 state qualifying events.Event by event breakdown-
4x800m: This event promised to be one of the most impressive races of the night, and the athletes delivered. Both Barrington and Lake Zurich had seed times below the state-qualifying time of 9:36.13 at 9:26.85 and 9:32.05, respectively. From the first 200m of the race, Barrington's Molly Fitzpatrick secured the lead spot and didn't move from it for the entire duration of the race. Lake Zurich also kept its 2nd place spot for the whole race. At the 1600m mark, Barrington is at 4:41, on pace to be well below a state qualifier. On the final 100m of the relay, Alyssa Norris sprints to the finish, earning her team a blazing 9:23.59. Lake Zurich qualified as well in 9:35.02.
4x100m: Huntley's Taryn Sargent and Stevenson's Jordan Tollison battled it out on the final stretch of the 4x100m relay, ultimately with Sargent pulling ahead and winning by .04 seconds with a time of 49.62. Both Huntley and Stevenson will continue on to compete at the state meet.
3200m: Emily Burns of Lake Zurich and Natalie Sorenson of Stevenson are both talented athletes who have previously run state qualifying 3200m times this season, 10:52 and 11:05 respectively. Burns and Sorenson quickly pulled away from the other group of girls, with Burns trailing behind Sorenson for most of the race. The first 1600m is run in 5:26. Sorenson ends with a new PR of 10:59.79, her first time going sub-11:00, followed by Burns in 11:06.17, both heading off to state next weekend.
100m Hurdles: Four state qualifying athletes earned tickets to Charleston. Daryn Davis of Huntley won in 15.03, followed by Erin Oleksak of Palatine, Kendal Only of Huntley, and Gretchen Quinn of Lake Zurich.
100m Dash: Senior Khari Thompkins of Mundelein finished the 100m with a season record of 12.73, followed by Savannah Morgan of Crystal Lake South in 12.75, the only two state qualifiers in the sprint event. Gianna Patenaude of Crystal Lake South lost by 1/100th of a second behind Morgan, narrowly missing her chance to compete at state. Unfortunately, no athlete ran below the 12.53 state qualifying time.
800m: The most notable athlete in the 800m race tonight is freshman Jordyn Miller of Mundelein, with a PR of 2:19.6. The weather seemed to slow down the athletes, as she finished in first place with a time of 2:21.42 followed by Hayley Burk of Lake Zurich in 2:26.29. Both girls can travel to Charleston next week for the state meet.
4x200m: Baker and Cossio return from their championship 4x800m to compete. Barrington once again wins a relay event, this time by over a second in 1:45.14 over Huntley, who valiantly earned a 1:46.58.
400m: This race showcased only one athlete who ran below 60 seconds previously this season, an impressive milestone for Sydney Mark, whose season best is 59.27. Ultimately, Thompkins won in 58.59, a new season best. Thompkins also won the 100m! Mark followed in 59.93, sneaking in under the 60-second mark.
300m Low Hurdles: Returning from her team's champion 4x800m relay and 4x200m relay, Gabby Cossio wins first place again, but this time in an individual event. Blazing through the ¾ lap in 45.60 seconds, she's over a second under the 46.67 state qualifying time. Oleksak was right behind in 45.75 seconds. Lake Zurich's Gretchen Quinn was a mere .10 seconds shy of the state time and sadly will not be continuing.
1600m: The fastest heat of the mile featured three of the region's top distance runners: Alyssa Norris, Brielle Rochester of Libertyville, and Fitzpatrick. The three raced each other at Palatine Distance Night all earning times ranging from 4:59 to 5:02. As expected, the three previously mentioned girls as well as Allison Drage fill in the top 4 spots and start to form their own pack at the 800m mark. Fitzpatrick is crowned 1600m champion with a time of 5:00.14, followed by teammate Norris, Rochester, and Cary Grove's Allison Drage in 5:03.23, 5:06.02, and 5:08.09, respectively.
200m: All sprinting event finishes tonight have been extremely close-- within milliseconds of each other-- and the 200m race is no different. All eight athletes are clumped together throughout the sprint until Dakota Lyons of Libertyville barely breaks away and wins the 200m dash in 26.29, followed by Jacobs' Nadia Baraglia in 26.36.
4x400m: Half of Barrington's champion 4x800m team is back, Cassio and Baker, with the addition of Dunn and Helmer to run the 4x400m relay. From the get-go, Barrington again gains a sizable lead, leaving all their competition in the dust. Olivia Helmer runs an incredibly fast 400m to earn her team first place and a state qualifying time of 4:01.27, 3 seconds under the state time of 4:04.33. Huntley's relay team earned a spot at state as well with a second place finish in 4:08.17.
Triple Jump: The all-stater Daryn Davis and teammate Kendal Only were big favorites to win and they did just that. Only went first jumping 36-09.25. Davis later leaped 37-11.25, who also qualified in the long jump.
High Jump: Defending state champion Grace Daun of Wauconda breezed to the top with a 5-7 effort. Daun, who had previously leaped 5-10, may be saving her best for next weekend.
Pole Vault: This event brought the highest number of state qualifiers. Four athletes cleared 10-03 or higher. Kylie Skie (Libertyville) and Teagan Jones (Lake Zurich) vaulted 10-03 and Jess Streepy (Palatine) and Kelsey Rothas (Lake Zurich) both jumped 11-03.
Shot Put: Kayla Miotk of Palatine threw 37-02.50, earning her second place in the competition. Camille Clay of Stevenson exceeded the state qualifying distance by 9.5 inches in 39-02.25. Both girls are sophomores, so they still have two more years to improve their strength even further.
Discus: Again, both state qualifiers for discus throw were sophomores. Kylee Stammer of Palatine threw 116-09 in order to earn herself a second place. Clay once again blew away the competition with a winning throw of 124-06, an impressive throw for any athlete, let alone an underclassman.Good luck to all athletes competing at State!