High School Track: Bolingbrook sprints into season’s stretch run
By Tim Tierney For Sun-Times Media May 2, 2012 7:02PM
Bolingbrook track athlete Xavier Perkins. Supplied, May 2012
Updated: June 4, 2012 11:39AM
Winning the SouthWest Suburban Blue indoor meet and the Blue Smoke Invitational at Thornridge proved depth shouldn’t be an issue for Bolingbrook as it starts the final month of the season.
That depth will be challenged May 10 when Bolingbrook hosts the tough SouthWest Suburban Blue meet. Then it’s on to the May 17 Lockport Sectional with qualifying spots on the line for the Class 3A state finals May 24 to 26 at Eastern Illinois University.
“We’ve been running well,” longtime Bolingbrook coach Art Pahl said. “We have some high hopes for the conference and some high hopes for qualifying kids to state. We’ll see what happens. Hopefully, the weather warms up a little bit.”
The first name from Pahl when he talks about his team is miler Stephen Garrett, who anchored the Raiders’ 3,200-meter relay to first place at the Thornridge meet.
Versatile Xavier Perkins (800, high jump) cleared 6 feet, 6 inches at the Thornridge meet, and Erik McDowell has gone over 50 feet in the shot put. A group of sprinters is led by Jacob Price and twins Justin and James Price, no relation to Jacob.
Pahl said he has “high hopes” for half-miler Koketih Perry and miler Jerome Davis, both sophomores. Senior quarter-miler Chris Brennan has been solid.
Bolingbrook finished third among 11 teams at the April 28 Palatine Relays, led by its first place in the triple jump relay. The Raiders also were third in the Englund Relays at Eisenhower and at the Ottawa Invitational earlier this season.
“It was nice when we had those warm days in March,” Pahl said. “This is the season of wind. That effects things a little bit. It effects the pole vaulters obviously and the high jumpers to a certain extent.”
Next for Bolingbrook is Saturday’s Carlin Nalley Invitational at Benedictine University in Lisle.
On the calendar
The intensity picks up this week with the SouthWest Suburban Blue and Southwest Prairie conference meets topping the girls track schedule. These will be the biggest meets of the year for many individuals unable to qualify for the state finals.
Both meets are Thursday, the SouthWest Blue at Bolingbrook and the Southwest Prairie at Plainfield Central.
SouthWest Blue members Lincoln-Way East and Homewood-Flossmoor were second and fourth, respectively, at last year’s Class 3A state meet. Three-time individual state champion Aaliyah Brown, of Lincoln-Way East, will head the sprint field while Lockport’s Megan O’Brien and Stefanie Sanders and Lincoln-Way Central’s Alena Pacheco will be the distance runners to beat.
Defending Southwest Prairie Conference champion Minooka is coming off a victory last week at the Conant Invitational. A few top individuals at the SPC meet will be Plainfield North sprinter Cessily Jones and Jaclyn Aremka in the high jump, Minooka’s Lauren Jonen, Janile Rogers and Angelica Estrada and Plainfield Central’s Grace Lawrence and Jenna Moody.
Lewis University freshman Kevin Dorenkamper, a Minooka graduate who was fourth in the Class 3A 300 hurdles last year, will be among the Flyers at the Great Lakes Valley Conference meet Friday and Saturday in Rensselaer, Ind.
Two weeks ago, Dorenkamper won the 110 and 400 hurdles to help Lewis finish second in the Big Blue Invite at Millikin University.