Boys Track: Six Leo entries qualify at state
Updated: May 24, 2012 11:10PM
Leo takes a break Friday in its quest for a second consecutive Class 1A boys track and field state title after a mostly successful opening day.
The Lions had one relay and five individual entries survive Thursday’s preliminaries at Eastern Illinois University’s O’Brien Stadium in Charleston. The Class 2A and 3A prelims are Friday, with finals in all classes scheduled for Saturday.
“We’re pretty good with what we have,” said Leo coach Ed Adams, who estimates five or six teams could be in the trophy hunt.
The Lions’ goal on Thursday was survival. “Just getting there (was key),” Adams said. “We’ll run faster in the finals.”
Leo’s 400-meter relay team of Keith Harris, Theodore Hopkins, Corey Pryor and Marlon Britton had the fastest qualifying time at 42.67 seconds. Hopkins also advanced by winning his heats in the 100 (10.73) and 200 (22.86) and Harris qualified in both sprints as well with times of 10.79 and 22.73. Britton is the Lions’ other individual finalist after winning his heat in the 110 hurdles at 14.93.
The off-day routine for the Lions will include ice baths and some jogging and stretching. “We’ll just sit back and relax,” Adams said.
Hales’ Joe Morrow will have a busy Saturday after advancing in three events: the 110 hurdles, 200 and 800 relay.
Mooseheart also has three spots in the finals. Defending 1A high jump champ Oumaru Abdulai is among the athletes who advanced by clearing 6 feet, 3 inches, while teammate Noel Yarngo won his heats in the 110 and 300 hurdles.
Also among the local qualifiers was Beecher’s Grant Nykaza, who ran 4:22.55 in the 1,600.