Often, what happens in Bloomington in March is duplicated in Charleston in May.
This weekend’s Illinois Top Times indoor track meet in Illinois Wesleyan’s Shirk Center is the reason. Even with a change in management, it attracts many of the best runners, jumpers and throwers for an early spring sneak preview of the outdoor season and May's IHSA championship.
Nine area schools will have competitors, beginning with Seton’s girls 800-meter relay team in tonight’s Class 1A section. Kyla Mays and Kalieia Ray, the bookends of that team, will also run individually in the 200, with Mays also in the 60.
Illiana Christian and Thornridge will be represented in Saturday morning’s 2A showcase, with Illiana spreading four members of its runner-up cross country squad across three races, and uniting Tony Wondaal, Austin Gibson, Kevin Vroegh and Nick Wondaal in the 3,200- meter relay. Additionally, the Vikings’ Alvy Butler will run in the 60.
Thornridge senior Nick Fizer is the No. 4 seed in the 60-meter hurdles and also in the 200, while Tataynna Groom will contest the girls 60 hurdles.
Class 3A, conducted Saturday afternoon, will feature six schools led by a half-dozen athletes from Thornton. Hurdlers Ti’Fonte Hunt and Demetrius Mitchell, sprinters Jauan Wesley, Cavion Clanton and Martise Craig, and second-seeded girls triple jumper Mitzi Terry will take part, along with three boys relay teams.
Thornwood will run a trio of relays and send shot putter Janeah Stewart and high jumper Kameesha Smith into the girls meet, along with Dwight Johnson in the boys 200.
Bloom has three individuals (triple jumper Ivory Cassell, 60/200 runner Brittany Thomas and 400 runner Kierra Griggs) and a pair of relays entered, while Homewood-Flossmoor’s represented by hurdler Jayla Stewart and 60/200 sprinter Antoinette Broughton and two relay teams.
Charlene Horton and Dannie Segers will both tackle the 60 hurdles for T.F. North, while Marquise Peggs runs the 60 for Mount Carmel.
In all, 27 individuals will be in 32 events, along with a dozen relay squads. —Tim Cronin
Stuck in the mud: The Thornton Fractional girls soccer team were victims of one cancellation and one postponement this week because of poor field conditions.
Thornton Fractional was supposed to play Rich South on Monday and South Suburban Blue Conference foe Oak Forest Tuesday, but both games were unable to be played. The Oak Forest game has been rescheduled for May 8, and the Rich South game has been canceled with no makeup date set.
"I guess it's good that we can be off all week," United coach Alejandro Lagunas said. "We're going to work this week. It will be a big week for us and hopefully be ready for next week when we start conference."
The United are 1-2 on the young season. Their next scheduled game is against Tinley Park at T.F. Northat 4:30 p.m. Tuesday at T.F. North.
What's in a name?: The Washington girls soccer team has a Sam Sosa and a Jennifer Lopez on its team. —Mike Nieto