Blackhawks soar in Oswego

Saturday, May 1 2010 -

Blackhawks soar in Oswego

West Aurora's Jasmine Ranson flies through the air during the triple jump event at the Girls Kane County Invitational at Batavia High School on Friday. 
(Brian Powers/Staff Photographer)

Invitational title is West's third of outdoor season
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BATAVIA -- West Aurora had a field day in the field events and kept it going on the track Friday night, rolling to the team title in the Girls Kane County Invitational.

"It definitely gets us going," said West Coach Teresa Towles, whose team piled up 127.5 points to out-distance runner-up Geneva, which had 108.

St. Charles East (83) and Batavia (73) were third and fourth with Rosary (29) tied for sixth, East Aurora eighth, Kaneland ninth and ACC tied for 13th.

"The field events are the leaders," Towles said. "If they come out strong, the rest of it flows along."

Shanice Andrews got the Blackhawks rolling by winning the triple jump with a personal best 38-0¾ and long jump with 16-10. Mariah Smith figured out the gusting wind out of the south and took the discus with a personal best 126-6 and the Blackhawks double scored in five of the six jumping and throwing events.

"I figured I'd be lucky to go 90 feet (in the discus)," Smith said. "But the ring was set up so that it was a crosswind and I finally figured out if I scooted over a little bit the wind would help it.

"And as a senior, winning the big meets like this is the best way to go."

It's the third invitational title of the outdoor season for the Blackhawks, who earlier claimed titles at Kaneland and Lockport.

"I hope we can keep it going next week at conference (Thursday at Glenbard East) and the following week at sectional," said Towles, who also got wins from Andrews in the 100 hurdles and her 400 and 800 relay teams that consisted of Kristin Holmes, Anita Saffo, Cynthia Smith and Kehlay Dunah.

"We've been working on our handoffs," said Dunah, who nipped St. Charles East's Danielle Kuzniewski at the finish line in the 400 but cruised with a 20-meter lead in the 800.

And that unit could get even better, said Towles.

"I'm hoping Jasmine (Ranson) can get back in there," the coach said. "She's my best 200 runner."

Ranson, who has been bothered by a sore knee, took fourth in the open 200, was second in the triple jump and tied for third in the high jump. Chasity Smith was second to Mariah Smith in the discus. Mariah Smith took third in the shot put and Shannon Howell was fifth while Chloeressa Coleman was fifth in the high jump and Shadae Picket was fifth in the long jump.

The Blackhawks also got thirds from their 3200 and 1600 relays, third and fourth from Saffo and Holmes in the 100 and fifth from Holmes in the 200.

Geneva got wins from its 3200 relay, Taylor Wickware in the 800, Erica Miller in the 400 and Allie Pace in the pole vault, which was stopped at 10-6 due to the dangerous wind conditions.

"It was a good day to work on mental toughness," Pace said of the wind. "These conditions can play on your mind. It's refreshing to know I can still bang out some decent heights when it's like this."

Geneva coach Peter Raak added, "You can never control the weather. You just have to deal with it. It's the same for everybody."

Luckily the rains held off until the very last event, the final heat of the 1600 relay, one of two wins for host Batavia.

"That's the first time we've run that group (together)," coach Chad Hillman said of the foursome of Julia Gross, Kathryn Warner, Lexy Dever and Alexis Sampson that ran a 4:06.90.

"It's the first time Lexy was on it and I'm shocked we ran that fast, given the conditions."

He also got a win in the shot put from sophomore Haleigh Theuerkauf (37-7½).

Junior sprinter Anna Deufel led Rosary, winning the 100-meter dash in 12.10 seconds, duplicating her effort last week at the Lockport Invite. She was also second in the 200 and anchored the fourth-place 400 relay.

"She's really finishing her races nice, that's gonna help her later," said Royals' coach Vic Mead. Girls Track: Kane County Invitational