St. Rita Girls Invite Yields Early Season Speed Play

The 4x100m relay showed the strength of the teams in the Chicagoland area



St. Rita HS; Chicago IL

Veteran coaches have a way of spinning things in their favor, especially sprint coaches. They know the chess game has to be played correctly in order to receive the most satisfactory gains.

Coming into the weekend's most hyped invitational, a full palate of talent was on the board for all to ponder. 

Let's start with the 4x100 relay-

Prior to the event the thought process was who would be the first team under 49-seconds. Well, that was answered quickly. Four teams put their strength on display and the winner is... Evanston! The Wildkits trailed for most of the race, though it was close. In the early going, it was Chicago Kenwood, Chicago Whitney Young, and Homewood-Flossmoor linked very tightly. Finally, on the final turn and into the hands of the anchor legs, the Wildkits and Homewood-Flossmoor were neck and neck. They hit the tape in a virtual tie. The Wildkits prevailed over the Vikings 48.38-48.43. Kenwood clocked 48.53 for third. Whitney Young also broke 49-seconds, without their #2 runner Rachel Robinson, in 48.97. 

The best of the rest-

With no Asia Thomas (So., Kenwood) in the 100m field, it meant Sydney Robinson (Jr., Young) had a clear path to the championship unless Sydney Weaver (Kenwood) could stop her. Robinson got out on the field and motored home with the wind sails on her back in an all-conditions personal best 11.92 [+3.2]. Weaver took second in 12.23 making it the first and fourth best times in the state thus far. 

The Wildkits added the 4x200 to their gold medal haul. They trucked home into a heavy head win and state best 1:43.30.

100HH: The arrival of Ana-Liese Torian is here. The Homewood-Flossmoor sophomore sensation did not get an opportunity to strut as a freshman phenom because of the Covid-19 season shutdown. However, it was one shot from the starter's pistol that ended any talk of her not being the future of this event. Torian glided down the track in reverse order and clocked a blistering 13.99 [+2.9]. This great start is the state's top mark (all conditions).

400: It was supposed to be Alexandria Edison (Homewood-Flossmoor) that showed off. She was in the catbird seat for 320m meters. But from the far outside lane was the emergence of Angela Alozie (So., HF) that stole the show in 59.08. Edison faded to third behind Ninawa Odicho (Niles North- 59.32) with a time of 59.33.

Caroline Schoen (So., HF) should the Vikings have more that speed as she swept the long distances events. Nearly lapping the entire 3200m field, Schoen ran a PB 11.47.18. The second run of the day was the 1600m and the outcome was the same, winning by 18 seconds in 5:26.64.

The long hurdles victory belong to Evanston senior Gabrielle Calixte. She navigated a strong wind on the final stretch in 46.71.

The Wildkits ended the winning relay spree with a speedy anchor by sophomore Dawson Wright who cruised a 60.7 that netted a state leading 4:01.84. Not to be overlooked was Kenwood who made things interesting and respectable in IL#2 4:04.88. Thomas clocked an eye-popping 54.6 carry.

Jordan Marshall (South Shore International) won both jumps. Her specialty is the triple jump and she won the event edging the tough Madison Saunders of Whitney Young by two inches in an IL#6 37-6.

Homewood-Flossmoor cleaned up as an all-around good team should as they scored 166 points to Evanston's 87.