Illinois Top Times Championships – Boys 2A Preview

Published by Mike Newman
Mar 22nd 2013, 1:00pm | 19138 views

By Michael Newman


There is nothing that make the heart beat faster is when two area rivals run against each over in a big event. When we get meets like that, we tend to see some spectacular times.


The performances should be hot in 2A especially when Cahokia and East St. Louis-Senior compete against each other. The Flyers are reborn in a way being moved to 2A. The last couple of meets they have been running hot. Cahokia is Cahokia. High quality athletes that are big meet performers.


I can’t wait!


Some of the top athletes in 2A will be on display offering up some great performances heading into the afternoon on Saturday. Here are previews on all the events in the Boys 2A meet.


On the track…

3200 Meter Run – Marc Maton (Glenwood HS, Chatham) has the fastest 2A time in the 3200 but chose to race in the 1600 in this meet. Keith Meyer (Bloomington HS, Bloomington) has the fastest seed time running 9:41 at the beginning of the month. Jonathan Schaap (Mahomet-Seymour HS, Mahomet) ran his 9:41 a week prior on this same track just edging Sam Doud (Bloomington HS, Bloomington) at the Normal West invitational. Josh Rodenberg (Waterloo HS, Waterloo) ran 9:42 at Carbondale around the same. Put them all together and we should have a good race. The advantage goes to Schaap. He did run 4:14 last spring in the 1600 and has a good finishing kick.


Other runners to watch in this race include Kyle Whitney (Vernon Hills HS, Vernon Hills), Kevin Boyle (Grayslake Central HS, Grayslake), Pat Yerkes (Fenwick HS, Oak Park), and Nick Fiene (Illiana Christian HS, Lansing).


4 x 800 Meter Relay – Cahokia has the best 2A time (8:03.89) in 2A and has the fastest time in this event by thirteen seconds over Kaneland. The Comanches should be the favorite in this event. Keep this in your mind: the last couple of years, teams have stayed close to Cahokia before they pulled away. This will be a closer race than the seed times tell us.


Keep an eye on Pontiac, Illiana Christian, Geneseo, and Normal University. They could challenge Cahokia and Kaneland for the race win.


60 Meter High Hurdles – This could be a great four athlete battle. Marcus Greer (East St. Louis-Senior HS, East St. Louis) has the second fastest time in the 55HH (7.58) and the fastest at 60 (8.26). Jonah Peoples (Centennial HS, Champaign) is only two hundredths behind on the leader’s list and could give Greer a challenge.


Devaughn Dix ( Bloomington HS, Bloomington) won the Big 12 Championships (8.32) and will also challenge for the win. Tyler Ginger (Olympia HS, Stanford) is usually know for his main event: the Pole Vault. He has the fourth seeded time in this event and could pull the surprise.


Hurdle specialists to watch as well include Rodolphe Boyer (Lakes HS, Lake Villa), Raheem Powell (Orr Academy HS, Chicago), Imani Payton (North Lawndale Prep, Chicago), and Patrick Lefevre (Central Catholic HS, Aurora).


60 Meter Dash – Jonathan Boey (MacArthur HS, Decatur) has been the main man in the sprints in the state this spring recording the fastest time in both the 60 (6.83) and the 55 (6.41). He did have a hiccup last week at Charleston losing to Pekin’s Cole Henderson at Charleston. Watch for Boey to try to redeem himself in this race.


Reggie Bratton (Jacksonville HS, Jacksonville) would have been Boey’s chief competition but his school is not competing at this meet. The one sprinter to keep an eye on is Fred Mosby (Winnebago HS, Winnebago). Mosby ran 6.46 for 55 Meters earlier in the month at Sterling and will challenge Boey in this race. Gage Patton (Metamora HS, Metamora), Trey Story (Cahokia HS, Cahokia), and Dion Hooker (Sycamore HS, Sycamore) are three sprinters that will challenge in this race. We could see Boey or the eventual winner to dip under 6.8 in the finals.


800 Meter Run – Darren Payton (Cahokia HS, Cahokia) is back to defend his title that he won last year in this meet. Payton ‘s only loss in this event came to 1A’s Blake Hale (Robinson HS, Robinson) at Carbondale at the beginning of the month. He does have the second fastest time in the state run last week at Charleston (1:57.06).


The pack behind Payton has the talent to challenge for the win. The one runner I would watch is Malik Lee (Brooks College Prep, Chicago). He ran his 1:59 in January at the Coach O Invite. He did how his fitness level running 4:30 last week at Carthage. He’s run 1:24 this winter at 600. He could be a threat. Nathan Allyn (MacArthur HS, Decatur), Zak Justus (Pontiac HS, Pontiac), and Sam Welbourne (Jersey HS, Jerseyville) all have PR’s under 2 minutes.  They could all leave with a win.


Also watch for Karson Hahn (Mt. Vernon HS, Mt. Vernon), Matt Meyers (Central Catholic HS, Aurora), and Jalon Monigan (Cahokia HS, Cahokia).


4 x 200 Meter Relay – East St. Louis-Senior and  Bloomington are close together with seed times. Throw in Cahokia who has the third fastest time in 2A and you should have one heck of a final. Kendrick Lewis will be the leader for a talented Flyers’ squad. Trey Story leads Cahokia while Sophomore Christian Neal has emerged as one of the leaders for Bloomington.


North Lawndale Prep is close behind. They ran 1:32.77 at ISU at the beginning of the month and could surprise in this race. Also watch for Champaign Centennial, Chatham-Glenwood, and Grayslake Central to be in the hunt. Anything can happen in this race as the exchanges that are made (or not made) make this indoor race exciting.


400 Meter Dash – Defending 2A 400 Champ is Marlin Brady (Cahokia HS, Cahokia) is in the field but does not have the fastest seed time. That belongs to Jeremiah Watson (Urban Prep/Bronzeville, Chicago) who ran that in the middle of February on this Shirk Center track. According to TFX records, his last race was in February. His PR is 50.62 outdoors. He is the wildcard in this race.


Brady has “college-like” experience because of all the big meets he has been involved in his young career. When the money is on the line in this race, count on Brady. DeShawn Jordan (North Lawndale Prep, Chicago) could be the surprise in this race. He has been coming on strong this indoor season. Other runners to watch include Jwauhn Askew (ESL-Senior, East St. Louis), Daniel Medrano (Brooks College Prep, Chicago), and Aquintis Williams (MacArthur HS, Decatur).


1600 Meter Run – This is one of the distance races that I am looking forward to this weekend. There is plenty of talent that will be toeing the line. Riley McInerney (Charleston HS, Charleston) is having a great season so far having run 4:22 and :20 in the two 1600’s that he has run. Marc Maton (Glenwood HS, Chatham) has run only one 1600 this indoor season, but that was a solo 4:21 at the Jacksonville Invitational at the beginning of the month. I think these two runners could push each other to the 4:17-4:18 range Saturday afternoon.


This is a deep, deep field. Chris Martin (Mascoutah HS, Mascoutah), Ryan Prais (Lakes HS, Lake Villa), Jake Brown (Mt. Zion HS, Mt. Zion), and Shaun Milhauser (Pontiac HS, Pontiac) all have the talent to run in the low 4:20’s in this meet. Other runners to watch in this race include Jonathan Schaap (Mahomet-Seymour HS, Mahomet), Sam Welbourne (Jersey HS, Jerseyville) and Tony Wondaal (Illiana Christian HS, Lansing).


200 Meter Dash – Two of the top 200 Meter runners in the state this spring are in this race. Jonathan Boey (MacArthur HS, Decatur) is undefeated at this distance this year having run a state best 22.41 at the end of February on this track. Kendrick Lewis (ESL-Senior, East St. Louis) ran 22.50 in the middle of February on an oversized University of Kentucky track. These two will push each other to a fast time.


The same rings true for Deshawn Jordan (North Lawndale Prep, Chicago). His best time of the season (22.62) was run in the middle of January in Fayetteville, Arkansas. I think we will see some fast times, but how fast?


Other runners to watch in this race include Trey Story (Cahokia HS, Cahokia), Nathaniel Agharese (Northside College Prep, Chicago), and Christian Neal (Bloomington HS, Bloomington).


4 x 400 Meter Relay – 3A fans…get to the Shirk Center early to see a great 4x4. Cahokia s the defending champs and the team with the fastest time in the state (3:25.07). East St. Louis-Senior has returned to days of glory past by running the second fastest time in the state (3:27.02). With a major championship on the line and area bragging rights on the line, we are going to see one fast race to end the 2A session.


Lake Villa Lakes and Chicago Brooks Prep ran a great relay last week at Carthage and could be in the mix in this race. Bloomington, North Lawndale Prep, and Kaneland could also be factors in this race. It is going to take 3:22-3:23 to win this relay.


In the field…

Long Jump – Watch the runway on the south side of the Shirk Center for Ja’mari Ward (Cahokia HS, Cahokia). This amazing freshman has been undefeated this season in the four meets that he has jumped in. His best performance has been 23-2 ½ at Southern Illinois at the beginning of the month. Teammate Chris Moore will push him. The senior has a best distance of 22-5 this indoor season.


Hard to see anyone surpassing the Cahokia duo, but we are not contesting this meet on paper. Raheem Powell (Orr Academy, Chicago), Kacey Adams (Grayslake Central HS, Grayslake), Roman Hill (Centralia HS, Centralia), and Imani Payton (North Lawndale College Prep, Chicago) will be jumpers that could disrupt this Cahokia 1-2.


Triple Jump – We have the same scenario that we have in the Long Jump but only in reverse. Senior Chris Moore (Cahokia HS, Cahokia) jumped a US #25 47-3.25 at the Edwardsville Invitational a few weeks ago. His teammate Ja’Mari Ward has jumped 46-9, but that was in January. In this open style meet, we have a third Cahokia jumper in the event with Jalon Monigan and his 46-5 ½ jump. The Comanches have that scary depth and a proud tradition when it comes to the jumps.


Garrett Lyle (Bloomington HS, Bloomington) is a sophomore  that has showed tremendous growth in this event this indoor season. He has gone 45-4 in this event. He will be looking for past 46 feet on Saturday. Other athletes to keep an eye on include Roosevelt McNeil (Lanphier HS, Springfield), Raheem Powell (Orr Academy, Chicago), and Deion Garwood (Triad HS, Troy).


High Jump – Five athletes that have cleared 6-7 or better makes this event a special event. Alex King (Massac County HS, Metropolis) cleared 6-10 earlier in the month at Carbondale in a classic matchup with Chester’s Kyle Landon.

King will have plenty of talent pushing him higher in this meet. Austen Stewart (Princeton HS, Princeton) and Tony Walker (Hillcrest HS, Country Club Hills) have both cleared 6-8. Ian Briscoe (Prairie Central HS, Fairbury) and Logan Zeman (LaSalle-Peru HS, LaSalle) both cleared 6-7 last weekend. See what I mean by this being a special event?


Other athletes that will be in the mix include Devaughn Dix (Bloomington HS, Bloomington), Antonio Pierce (Cahokia HS, Cahokia), and Chris Weber & Dakota Swadinsky (Rochelle HS, Rochelle).


Pole Vault – Tyler Ginger (Olympia HS, Stanford) has been in many competitions this year where he has faced tough competition . That exposure will just make him stronger and that should show on Saturday. Ginger is the 2A list leader clearing 15-1 at the Windy City PV Summit.


He will have some good vaulters pushing him in this meet. Chase Black (Charleston HS, Charleston)  cleared 14-7 at the ISU Invite along with Blake Pasley (Rochester HS, Rochester) clearing 14-6 in a met in Missouri in the middle of February.


Dakota Cabbage (Prairie Central, Fairbury), Andrew Platz (Geneseo HS, Geneseo), and Matt Dwyer (St. Laurence HS, Burbank) will be three other athletes that will be in the mix. This is a deep field. 9 vaulters have cleared 14-0 or better.


Shot Put – Brendan Duncan (Waterloo HS, Waterloo) has been on fire this indoor season. His best mark was the 59-6 ¼ in February at the U of I.  He is undefeated in the three meets that he has competed in. His chief competition should be Ryan Njegovan (Sandwich Community, Sandwich). At a meet last Saturday at Reed Custer, he achieved a new PR of 56-11. He will be the one to push Duncan.

Other athletes to watch in the Shot include Mike Hyc (St. Laurence HS, Burbank), Issac Ingram (Harrisburg HS, Harrisburg), and Rashade Campbell (Centralia HS, Centralia).


Good luck to all athletes, coaches, and fans on Saturday!

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