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updated: 4/12/2013 11:52 PM

Ellis, Santos bring Warren a win at Barrington

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By Michael Eaken
Daily Herald Correspondent

The sophomore duo Brittny Ellis and Autumn Santos gave Warren a powerful 1-2 punch on Friday night at the Barrington Invite.

Ellis and Santos combined for four victories in leading Warren to the title with a commanding 137 points in the 10-team field.

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New Trier took second with 107 points, followed by host Barrington (102 points), Plainfield North (66 points), and Hoffman Estates (64 points).

Ellis and Santos started the night by combining with junior Marquesa Daniels and freshman Bryn Santos in leading Warren to the victory in the 400 relay (50.18)

Autumn Santos then came back to take first in the 100 dash (12.98), with Ellis adding a first in the 400 (59.34).

Ellis (25.65) and Santos (26.49) finished the night by going 1-2 in the 200 dash to propel the Blue Devils to the title.

"It's great to have two of the top sprinters in the area, and they really work well together," said Warren coach Ryan Dunn of the Ellis and Santos. "We were competitive in a lot of events across the board, and the sprinters really rose to the occasion tonight."

Ellis is the defending Class 3A champion in the 400, and the sophomore showed no signs of slowing down on Friday.

"It was a big win for us tonight," said Ellis of her stellar performance. "I think we showed our depth with our sprinters, and we're going to keep working hard."

Autumn Santos was state qualifier last season, and the sophomore is continuing to improve this season.

"We have a lot young sprinters, and it's making thing exciting," said Santos, "We can cover a lot of events."

Sophomore Jessica Gromala added to the Blue Devils fun by taking first in the 100 high hurdles (16.23). Senior Alyssa Phillips (16-0) and sophomore Angelica Pack (15-09) went 1-2 in the long jump to aid Warren.

Senior Courtney Ackerman (10:45.17) and Mimi Smith (11:00.10) went 1-2 in the 3,200 leading New Trier to second place. Ackerman took control early in posting an impressive time.

Freshman Anna Cossio gave host Barrington a lift by taking first in the 300 low hurdles (50.02) and also adding a first place finish in the high jump (5-03).

Cossio came from behind on the last hurdle to edge New Trier senior Dana Hankin (50.37) for the 300 low hurdle title.

"I just wanted to get out to a good started and give it everything I had at the end," said Cossio of her victory. "I just blocked everything out at the end."

Senior Samantha Babiuk also gave Barrington a lift by taking first in the pole vault (9-03) and third in the 400 (1:02.62). She then combined with Cossio, sophomore Lauren Cropsey, and sophomore Stephanie Bergren in leading the Fillies to first place in the 1,600 (4:13.97).

"It was exciting to end the meet with 1,600 relay victory," said Babiuk of the meet-ending victory. "We're working really hard, and I feel that relay is coming together."

Barrington also took second in the 800 relay (1:51.01) and 3,200 relay (9:58.94). Junior McCall Braun added a second in the 100 high hurdles (16.83) and senior Melina Milone added a second in the triple jump (30-02) for the Fillies.

Hoffman Estates junior Banke Oginni is also off to a fast start. Last year she took second in Class 3A for shot put, and the Hawks junior hit big on Friday.

Oginni went a career-best 44-10.5 to take first in the shot put, and added a first in the discus (115-04).

"This year I am feeling really confident and I am going for the gold," said Oginni. "I am going to do whatever it takes to get. I just feel more comfortable in the ring."

Hoffman Estates freshman Meagan Biddle is also feeling pretty comfortable. Biddle came from behind in the final lap, taking the lead with 150 meters remaining to take first in the 1,600 (5:14.60).

Biddle started the night by helping lead the Hawks to first in the 3,200 relay (9:51.46).

"I am just going to continue to keep working and try to get better," said Biddle of her impressive night.

Senior Tyra Palmer, who was part of the 3,200 relay, also gave Hoffman a lift by taking first in the 800 (2:29.32).

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