Boys Track: Joliet West’s Calvin Edwards sprinting into limelightSenior Calvin Edwards, a sprinter at Joliet West High School, was a volleyball player until converting to track last year as seen Thursday, March 1, 2012, in Joliet. | Matthew Grotto~Sun-Times Media
Boys Track 2012
Plainfield South: Tied for ninth in 3A state meet. Top returnees are 200-meter dash sectional champ Dantrell Wright and Mitch Wolff from state champ 1,600-meter relay. Other key individuals will be Jalen Bonner, Cody Dyer, Dan Lathrop and Tyler Ryan.
Minooka: Ninth-place tie in state led by first-place 3,200-meter relay, which returns Joey Santillo and Dan Popek. Dan Ingram (400 meters), Nathan McGuire (sprints), Preston Scheel (long jump, triple jump) and Kurt Zumbahlen (high jump) will be point getters.
Plainfield North: Watch out for Tigers’ 400 relay — Jayden Gerber, Quest Young, Jacob Clayton and Marquis Flowers all back from state finalist. Flowers, Young and Clayton also ran on fourth-place 800 relay. Top sprinter Derick Suss missed last year with injury.
Joliet West: Sprinter Calvin Edwards scored points in four state meet events last year. Steven Austin (400 meters) ran on the 7th-place 800 relay and 8th-place 400 relay. Angel Rosario (800 meters) and Michael Huffer (1,600 meters) will be key individuals.
Lockport: SouthWest Suburban Blue runner-up is led by distance runner Tom Razo. Johnathon Goins (hurdles), C.J. Monroe (shot put), Mike Haldeman (sprints) and Pat Fisch and Jake Boltero both in the pole vault give Porters scoring strength.
ONE TO WATCH: Romeoville senior Perez Ford, a 100-meter finalist last year.
Updated: March 3, 2012 10:09PM
Calvin Edwards used to spend his springs in the gym, playing volleyball. But a summer day in pursuit of his fall passion led him from the end line to the finish line.
“The first time I really got to see him run was going into his junior year,” West football and track coach Jason Aubry said. “We’re playing 7-on-7 in the summer. He’s playing defensive back and he got beat deep. The guy just ran past him. But he ran the ball down and knocked the ball away because of his speed.
“From that point on I was, ‘This guy has to run track.’ ”
He certainly has.
Edwards made it to the Class 3A state finals in four events as a junior in 2011, finishing eighth in the 100-meter dash and ninth in the 200. He also ran on the 800 and 400 relay squads that took seventh and eighth, respectively.
Edwards made the switch to track without much convincing from Aubry.
“I was going to play volleyball again my junior year, but coach said ‘You should come out for track. Track will suit you pretty well,’ ” Edwards said. “I never ran track, but I’m open to different ideas. I was like, ‘All right, I’ll come out.’ ”
And before he knew it, Edwards was hooked.
“I liked it,” he said. “After a couple meets I started getting medals and I started liking it even more. I’m feeling this, I won some more medals. So I got very dedicated to it.”
That’s not just Edwards talking. Aubry sees the same desire in his gifted sprinter, who was a wrestler at Troy Middle School.
“He’s dedicated to it now,” Aubry said. “We’ve got a regimented schedule of practice.”
Edwards, whose brother, Brian, is on the basketball team, sees himself as a leader to the younger members of the track team.
“I’m going to push some of the younger guys to where I’m at so we have more guys run downstate,” Edwards said. “Running speed drills, they clown around. I did that too. Sometimes you have to get serious with them. When coach says it’s time to go to work, it’s time to go to work.”
Edwards turned a lot of heads at the SouthWest Suburban Blue meet last year. He won the 100 in 10.7 seconds, the 200 in 21.9, anchored the first-place 400 relay and ran third on the winning 800 relay that set a meet record of 1:28.05.
His chances to step up appear good. At last year’s state meet, four of the seven sprinters to finish ahead of him in the 100, and six of eight in the 200, were seniors.
“My goal for this year is to beat my times from last year,” Edwards said. “My favorite race would have to be the relays with the team. Individual is all right. I like sharing the glory with my teammates. We can do it together.”
Steven Austin is back with Edwards on the 400 and 800 relays. They are joined by juniors Korey Rogers and Kameron Hargrove, both running backs on the football team.
Angel Rosario in the 800, Michael Huffer in the 1,600 and Austin in the 400 also will be key individuals for West.