Congratulations to Crete-Monee on their State Championship as well as Homewood-Flossmoor and Oak Park-River Forest for claiming the other two trophies! Even these top teams suffered some misfortunes at this meet, showing how unforgiving the State Meet can really be.
Matt Appel (Jr.), who came down to the State Meet last year for the first time but did not make finals, not only made the finals in both the Shot Put and the Discus, but scored in both and was two time All-State. Matt placed 4th in the Shot Put with his record setting throw from yesterday of 58’ 9”. In the Discus, Matt took 3rd place with a throw of 176’ 9”.
Despite coming into Day 2 with the best mark from Day 1, our 4 x 800 m relay team of Chris Keeley (Sr.), Nicolas Dovalovsky (So.), Michael Madiol (Sr.) and Michael O’Connor (Sr.), took 7th with a time of 7:52.76. In a race where every leg took it out fast for the first 400 m, our distance runners pushed themselves to catch up and had some admirable efforts even though this was not how the usually race. Regardless of position, they did not give up and their efforts proved enough for the relay team to earn All-State honors.
In the hurdles, Donovan Turner (Sr.) had a rough day. With a bad start in the 110 m High Hurdles, and going over some of the hurdles with the wrong leg, he struggled to regain ground on the field and finished 9th in a time of 14.84. He had similar issues on the 300 m Intermediate Hurdles where he could not find his rhythm early and took 8th in 40.17. However, Donovan earned All-State honors in both events for the second year in a row.
In the final event of the meet, the 4 x 400 m relay team of Kel Foley (Sr.), Patrick Hoffmann (Jr.), Jonah Covarrubias (Sr.) and Donovan Turner (Sr.) fought hard for every place to improve the team standing. At this point, we knew that a trophy was just out of reach, but the team charged ahead and took 6th place in 3:23.22. This team, which was made up of three of the legs from last year, repeated as All-State, adding to the large number of All-State 4 x 400 m teams from Neuqua Valley.
As we get ready to say goodbye to our Seniors, we hope that they have influenced the underclassmen to challenge themselves to be back to Charleston in one year to make their own stamp on the State Meet. The preparation for next season starts this Summer!