Glenbard West reigns
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Emma Gambol was not about to leave Benedictine University with three runner-up performances Saturday afternoon in Lisle.
The Glenbard West sophomore, after razor-thin defeats in the 100-meter dash and 300 hurdles, not to mention a third-place finish in the triple jump, had a comfortable lead on the anchor leg of the 1,600 relay.
Gambol proceeded to lengthen the Hilltoppers' lead over Whitney Young to cement their third consecutive team championship of the Sue Pariseau girls track and field invitational.
Gambol, with support from Emma Reifel, Mary Nevins and Emma Winans, catapulted the Hilltoppers' quartet to victory in 4:03.19 as the last event of the 15-team invitational was emblematic of the final team score.
Glenbard West, which endured moving the meet to Lisle after its home track was inundated with more than 3 feet of water from the midweek rains, defeated Whitney Young 86-71 for the title.
"I was really tired from all my events," Gambol said of her final 400 split. "I wanted to hold the one girl from Whitney Young off. I was a little disappointed I didn't come in first (in the 100 dash or 300 hurdles)."
The Glenbard West fortunes were once again inconceivable without the all-around brilliance of Reifel and Madeline Perez.
The two, the linchpin of the Hilltoppers' third fastest time in the nation last spring in the 3,200 relay, returned to the event for the first time this outdoor season.
Perez and Reifel ran sub-2:17 splits to propel the Hilltoppers past Whitney Young in the best time in the state this spring at 9:28.62.
Reifel later remained undefeated at 800 meters to add another individual title for Glenbard West; Perez was virtually unopposed in cruising to the open 1,600 title in 4:54.4.
"When Madeline runs (the 3,200 relay), it's a totally different race for us," said Reifel, who captured the 800 run in a season-low of 2:17.78. "(Her presence) gives us a big boost. She is one of the most competitive runners I know."
Perez, with West Suburban Silver rivals Emma Fisher (York) and Jill Hardies (Hinsdale Central) skipping the 1,600, won by nearly 175 meters.
"It's really great when they're in the races," the reigning Class 3A cross country state champion said. "It's a home meet, so I wanted to represent my school and community."
When the Hilltoppers' Lisa Luczak, fourth at 3,200 meters, placed third in the 1,600, the title was essentially clinched.
"This is a proud day for Glenbard West girls track," Glenbard West coach Kelly Hass said. "This will be our new standard (due to relocating the meet)."
Naperville North edged Barrington for third behind its stellar distance crew of Elly DeTurris and Kimber Meyer at 3,200 meters, and the freshmen duo of Emory Griffin and Ella Guppy at 1,600 meters.
Stephanie Mueller won the high jump for the Huskies, and Miami of Ohio-bound pole vaulter Hope Turner was second.
Colleen Krawczykowski (Willowbrook long jumper), Emma Grisanzio (Wheaton North sprinter), Cara Tenerelli (Hinsdale Central hurdler and jumper) and Fisher (York 3,200 champion) paced their local programs.
Barrington edged Oak Park-River Forest for fourth place in the bunched pack.
Rachel Cheever had impeccable timing in exceeding 100 feet in the discus for the first time.
The Barrington junior turned back Wheeling senior Brie Majkowski by 4 inches with her personal-best effort of 109-1 to win the event.
"I was trying to focus on the things that kept my previous discs from going far," Cheever said. "As soon as (the judges) marked it, I knew (the winning throw) was far."
Barrington freshman Anne Cossio was also runner-up in the high jump.
Lake Zurich struggled to score points, but the squad did have the distinction of having the fastest 400-meter relay unit.
Lindsey Moritz had an almost storybook underclass career for the Bears, going to the state meet seven times in a maximum eight events her first two years.
Saturday the Naval Academy recruit led off the Bears' relay, which classmate Teagan Hough, a University of Illinois-Chicago future sprinter, completed for Lake Zurich.
"Our handoffs were perfect today," Moritz said of the Bears' whisker-thin win over Oak Park-River Forest. "That's all we have been working on this week. It brought a measure of redemption from an injury-plagued and new-look attack last spring in the sprint relays.
"Last year was a bad year," Hough said.
One week after dropping back-to-back 100- and 200-meter sprint titles to West Aurora returning all-stater Anita Saffa, Wheeling senior Sydney Keith was second to none at the two distances on Saturday.
Keith ran the shorter of the two races in 12.83 to deny Gambol and returned in the penultimate event to win by four-tenths of a second in 26.03.
"I hope this shows a little bit of a preview (of the Mid-Suburban East Division)," Keith said of her twin victories. "The 200 I have been struggling a little bit, so I am happy with the 200 finish."
Erica Hill in the long jump, and Kelly Hill in the pole vault paced Hersey.
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