They came, they saw, they ran it fast.
In recent years Geneva's boys track squad had competed at Hinsdale South's Mike Yavorski Invite, which was held last Friday. Though the Vikings were defending champions at Hinsdale South, coach Gale Gross instead took the team to the Eastern Relays at the University of Louisville.
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"I like to do something to promote team bonding," Gross said. "The past couple of years we have gone to the Drake Relays as spectators. This was an opportunity to compete as well."
Compete they did. Geneva finished sixth overall in team standings out of 62 teams represented.
In pole vault Tim Guthrie set a new personal-record of 14 feet, 6 inches to take that title out of 23 vaulters. Fellow senior Dan Acton finished fourth with another PR of 14 feet. The big meet also gave opportunities to senior vaulters Will Barrett and Matt Dalton, both of whom surpassed prior efforts.
In the ring, Kyle McNeil's discus throw of 152 feet, 5 inches placed sixth out of 56 athletes. The winner threw 193-1.
Trying something they definitely couldn't run at Hinsdale South, Dan Herrera and Jordan Midgley finished third and fourth, respectively, out of 41 runners in the 2-kilometer steeplechase.
In conventional races on the track Geneva fielded several top-10 finishers.
In the 400-meter run, Justin Davis and Tim Roels finished ninth and tenth, respectively, out of 51 runners. Nathan Wendt took eighth place out of 52 in the 800, at 1 minute, 58.38 seconds.
Gross opted to load his sprint relays instead of putting runners in the open races and it paid off. The Vikings' 400 relay of Roels, freshman Justin Taormina, Acton and Davis placed sixth out of 40 teams at 44.31 seconds. Roels, Sam Hudnall, Davis and Justin Nebel also finished sixth out of 24 teams in the 1,600 relay. The 3,200 relay team of Wendt, Ryan Rasmussen, Midgley and junior Dan Dudman finished seventh out of 40 teams, at 8:17.11.
In one aspect, Geneva couldn't catch a break.
"I thought it would be an opportunity to get really warm weather," Gross said. "This year I was wrong. The weather was actually better up here on Saturday. Louisville was rainy and 55."