Competitive action ruled the day at the AAU Central meet; Nelson Speaks hushes up the competition
The second and final day of qualifying for the regional round saw hundreds of competitors converge on the grounds of Benedictine University. The action would start with less than seasonably cool climes (in the upper 50s), cloudy skies, and rain. The gloom would not last all day though, the sun made its presence during the afternoon portion of the meet and baked those who remained for the action.
The first event on the track was the age group 3000m runs which was a delight to the distance runners. Naperville North product junior Marissa Magana produced the best overall time 11:30.93 out of the 17-19 age group.
Lailah Green of the Aurora Flyers Track Club was the first standout of the 14-year-old age group when she roared past her peers in 57.69. Green was more than three seconds faster than the nearest competitor. It wasn't until the 17-19 grouping led by the standout Abrielle Artley of Evanston trumped her with a 57.16.
Neuqua Valley rising junior Inara Ukawuba took to the track and stood out in the 15-16 age group 100H with a time of 15.51. That time was good enough to take third overall (33" hurdles) because the state's ace rising senior Ana-Liese Torian of Homewood-Flossmoor came and conquered the 17-19 grouping with an easy 14.68.
Hoosier state entrant Kylee Marshall represents the Illinois Shockers during the summer and she edged Kee'lani Whitlock of Chicago Kenwood in the 15-16 grouping 100m 12.91-12.97. The wind conditions made it rough for the competitors as the eldest division (17-19) fared only slightly better with Janiya Bowman edging Alexandria Edison 12.74-12.76.
The outstanding 14-year-old "DJ" Dontrell Young of the Aurora Flyers kicked off his day by winning the 400m in 52.30. Later it was Nelson Speaks of the Illinois Shockers who won the 15-16 grouping and lowered the overall mark to beat 51.53. Daniel Lacy of the Decatur Dominators completed the round of quarter-miles, taking the 17-19 age group in 49.46. Lacy would be the only competitor to break 50-seconds.
The 110HH hurdles field was sectioned off because of hurdle height but when the dust settled, it was Jaden Bossie who reps the Illinois Flames in the summer season, clocked 14.93 to win the 17-19 age group.
The wind conditions played with the 100m races. Up-and-coming youngster Zion Morrison of the Kroc Hounds and Foxes TC took the 13-year-old division in 12.20. Next up were the 14-year-olds and Myson Johnson-Cook of Decatur winning by a second in 11.72. Terrell King of Urbana won his second race of the week, taking the 15-16 grouping in 11.47. Robert Scott won the final 17-19 division with a time of 11.20.