2024 Class 2A Boys State Recap: Event By Event

Harley Rizzs of Burbank St. Laurence is the victor in the 100m (Jack Borchers photo)




Never count out a defending team champion, especially when they have one of IHSA glory like E. St. Louis Senior. They have seemingly won titles in every era. They were pitted fourth in the MileSplit IL power rankings by a few points. Still, the Flyers took it personally and went out and performed all over the field and track. The final result was 50 points, all it took to become champions. Second place was Mascoutah (we guess that one right) with 41. Benton got the final trophy, tallying 33.


4x800: The defending champions graduated three of the four guys from last year's squad. But it didn't matter for the Grizzlies, who came into the final with the fastest time in the preliminaries, 7:53.21. In the final, it was close through two legs until Tra'Monti Williams (So.) took flight on the third leg with a sizzling 1:53.84. Preston Ellis (Jr.) brought it to victory and class record 7:42.68.

4x100: The sentimental favorite coming in was St. Laurence because they are a fun bunch who collectively love the sport of track and field like no other quartet. Third leg Harley Rizzs (Jr.) gave his team a nice cushion, and Monroe Thompson Jr brought it home for the victory in 41.94. No other team broke 42 seconds.

3200: The top distance runner in the state is Dylon Nalley (Sr., Marion), and he resides in 2A. Nalley was all business from the gun, hitting the first half in 4:26.8 and led by over five seconds. As he continued to churn out sub-70-second laps, it was evident that he would break 9:00 and have an opportunity to take down the class record. Nalley clocked a 63.6 on the final lap and, to cop the record, 8:56.02.

110HH: The top seed and hurdler in the state, Arion Hill (Jr., Centralia), did not make it out of prelims. Louis Yohannes (Jr., Triad) made the most of his opportunity, winning his first title in 14.36 (+2.4).

100: All nine finishers broke 11.00, a first for this classification. Harley Rizzs earned his second gold medal and first individual title over Rasheed Johnson (Sr., Rockford Boylan) 10.66-10.67.

800: If track and field were a booing sport, unfortunately, Patrick Hilby (Sr., Aurora Central Catholic) might have caught several catcalls from the crowd. The nation's top half-miler cruised through a sluggish opening 400 in 56.3. No one would challenge him on the final circuit as Hilby checked his shoulders and blindside before easily winning in 1:52.39. Hilby had a boatload of races to consider, including the 400 several races later.

4x200: Morton easily won the final in 1:27.33. The Potters ran the sixth-fastest time in the state.

400: Hilby returned a short time later to win comfortably in 48.08. His time collectively over three classes would have been third.

300H: It was all business for Adrian Mann (Jr., Harrisburg) after missing the 110HH final by one place. He earned the top seed to the finals in 39.50 and later clocked 38.51 for the state title (IL#6).

1600: It was academic for the defending champion, the top seed, and the state's overall top guy here. Gavin Genisio did not waste time controlling the race despite Ethan Hogan (Sr., Columbia) hovering around. Genisio put the race away on the final lap in 57.6 to win in 4:10.03.

200: Kenneth Buchanon (Sr., East. St. Louis Sr.) has seen better days at the state final, but at this moment, he was happy because he helped his team secure another team title. His main contribution was winning his first individual title in 21.73. "Kenny Man," as they call him, had the biggest smile on his face in the aftermath.

4x400: #1 Sycamore had a rough weekend from a team perspective. The Spartans got out of Charleston with some happiness after taking the "Showstopper" in 3:19.21. Eli Crome (Sr.) anchored in 48.71.


Field events-

Pole Vault: Cooper Schaad (Sr., Geneseo) had proved gold under pressure most of the year, going undefeated during the outdoor season. Schaad cleared the same height as Tony Keene (Sr., Harrisburg) at 15'11." Schaad and Keene had the same number of misses overall, but Schaad was awarded the victory.

Long Jump: It was an interesting set of events as Aidan Wyzard (Jr., Sycamore) was leading through the prelim round. An apparent injury prevented him from maximizing his potential. He passed on two of the three attempts and was overtaken by the winner Gavyn Cothern (Olney Richland County) whose 22'11.25" was on his fifth attempt.

Shot Put: The moneyline was on the Indiana University bound Caleb Smith (Sr., Salem), and rightfully so. He had been one of the elite throwers all season, including going 4 for 4 against Andrew Kinsman (Jr., Benton). Well, the emotion of his head coach Brent Mclain in the background and his team needing valuable points for a team trophy propelled him past Smith, 59'0.75."

Triple Jump: After classification leader Tylan Landfair didn't make the final, it was open to who would be the champion. Jamarion Bardwell (Jr., Springfield Sacred-Heart Griffin) came from behind on his fifth attempt to take the win, 46'1.50."

Discus Throw: It was a remarkable day for DeMarion Forman (Sr., Monticello), who set the classification record 193'11." Forman threw over 185' on three of his six throws. He won by over 15 feet.

High Jump: Drew Rogers (Jr., Paris) had to split his time between baseball and track and field. He performed his best in time to win a state title. His height of 6'8.75" was close to his personal best of 6'9."