EDWARDSVILLE - The Edwardsville High girls track team is off and running, enjoying a great start under new head coach Tayvonne Landry and had a successful indoor season that's now translating into the new outdoor season.
The Tigers finished second to O'Fallon in the first big outdoor meet of the year, the Southwest Illinois Relays, Tuesday afternoon at the Winston Brown Track and Field Center, with the Panthers winning the meet with 194 points, the Tigers coming in second with 176 points, Collinsville placing third at 77 points, Mascoutah finishing fourth at 69 points and Belleville West coming in fifth with 63 points.
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The Tigers performed well in all events and Landry is very happy with how the season has started.
"Everything is going really well," Landry said. "This past weekend, we had indoor state (the Illinois Top Times meet in Bloomington), so we're just trying to keep building momentum going into the season and looking to, obviously, be in a really good spot, conference and state-wise, come May. So right now, we're really looking good and I'm all excited about it."
Landry pointed to the relay teams as bright spots for the Tigers on the day.
"Overall, I think our (4x800 meters) did really well," Landry said. "Our distance girls always come up big for us. They're very hard workers, Our sprinters, are a very young group. They've made some very good performances overall today. So I'm very excited about that. Our (4x100 meters) finished first, sprint medley finished first. And actually, we were about four seconds off the school record for it, so that was pretty exciting. The (4x800 meters) finished first as well. And as I said, it's a lot of young groups that we've got. Blakely (Hockett) even finished first in the 300-meter hurdles. So it's been a lot of good performances, I'm excited about it. And like I said, a very young group, so we're just learning and growing as a first year with me as head coach. Learning how to compete and we want more."
So far, so good for the Tigers, and Landry is very happy and grateful to have the chance to lead the team.
In the shot put, Edwardsville finished one-two, with Kaitlyn Morningstar winning with a throw of 10.72 meters, Jenkins coming in second at 10.51 meters, the Tigers' Joi Story was fourth at 9.86 meters, the Kahoks' Craig Hall was fifth at 9.52 meters, with teammates Ellie Rhinehart seventh at 8.73 meters and Skylar Thomeczek eight at 8.43 meters. In the discus throw, Morningstar and Jenkins again finished in the top two, with Morningstar throwing 36.37 meters, Jenkins going 34.78 meters, with Story coming in third at 31.03 meters, Rhinehart was fourth at 26.54 meters, Hall finishing sixth at 20.30 meters and Thomeczek was seventh at 16.85.
Things started off well in the running events for Edwardsville with points in the 100 meters, won by O'Fallon's Jaliah Pelly at 13.07 seconds, with the Kahoks' Deairra Spears second at 13.44 seconds, Ragin Clemons of Collinsville was fourth at 13.63 seconds, the Tigers' Allie Stover was sixth at 13.69 seconds and teammate Lia'Nice Cruzin was eighth at 14.39 seconds.
Edwardsville's girls were sensational in the 1,600 meters with Emma Patrick winning with a time of 5:40.44, and teammates Arabella Ford fourth at 5:58.56, and Margaret Paty fifth at 6:12.68.
The hurdles races saw Autumn Scruggs of O'Fallon win the 100 meters with a time of 17.82 seconds, with Collinsville's Kaylynn Castens eighth at 26.71 seconds and teammate Chanell Jones placing ninth at 29.12 seconds. Hockett won the 300-meter race with a time of 51.32 seconds, with Jones coming in fifth at 58.68 seconds and teammate Sanaa Harris was sixth at 1:08.48.
In the open relays, the Tigers won the 4x100 meters with a time of 50.75 seconds, with the Kahoks coming in third at 58.52 seconds. In the 4x200 meters, the Panthers won with a time of 1:48.11, while the Tigers were second at 1:50.73 and the Kahoks came in fifth at 2:11.53. Edwardsville took the 4x400 meters with a time of 4:19.91, with Collinsville fifth at 5:27.69. In the 4x800 meters, Edwardsville won at 9:52.91, while the Kahoks were fifth at 12:32.28.
In the medley relays, the Tigers took the sprint medley relay with a time of 2:00.42, with Collinsville coming in fourth at 2:15.76. Edwardsville also won the distance medley relay with a time of 12:58.54.
In the field events, the Tigers' Dallas Jenkins won the high jump, going over at 1.42 meters, while teammate Zuri Walker tied for fourth with Lily Prendable of O'Fallon, both going over at 1.27 meters. The pole vault saw Mascoutah's Katarina Schneider win the event, going over at 3.20 meters, with Jaylyn Bell of the Tigers placing fourth, going over at 2.00 meters even and teammate Addison Yamnitz tying for fifth with O'Fallon's Dani Johnson, with both going over at 1.85 meters.
The Panthers' Haeli Tart won the long jump, going a distance of 4.77 meters, with Toby Hawkes of the Kahoks fourth at 4.31 meters, Edwardsville's Zuri Walker was fifth at 4.21 meters and teammates Kira Bartoszkiewicz came in sixth at 4.08 meters and Elizabeth Jones was eighth at 4.04 meters. O'Fallon's Kyla Cason won the triple jump with a distance of 9.93 meters, with Adara Martin of Edwardsville second at 9.54 meters, Zoe Hall of Collinsville tied for fourth with teammate Harris at 9.13 meters each and Carstens was seventh at 8.51 meters.
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