It was a bittersweet night for Prospect girls track and field coach Dave Wurster.
The Knights were 17 points better than WW South, 99-72, in the York sectional Friday, but the sectional team championship did not compensate for several near misses.
“The sectional meet is always an emotionally weird night for a coach,” Wurster said. “You get really excited for a few minutes and then you have to move on. There are always two or three events that you just miss in (qualifying). (The girls) work so hard and then their season is over.”
Prospect was third in the epic 3,200 relay at state behind WW South and Glenbard West last year.
Lauren Poplawski, Christina Santiago and Brooke Wolfe returned to the fold for another championship run after turning back Glenbard West with a time of 9:41.54.
Poplawski and Santiago were denied individual titles at 800 and 1,600 meters by Wheaton Warrenville South’s McKenna Kiple and Glenbard West’s Madeline Perez.
“I thought I had the win,” said Poplawski, who was runner-up at 800 meters in a splendid 2:14.53. “I couldn’t run any faster.”
Santiago appeared to be within striking distance of Perez with 200 meters to go.
“I thought I could catch (Perez) for a little bit,” said Santiago, sixth in the event last year at state. “I couldn’t quite get her. We (the members of the 3,200 relay) feel really good about what can happen next week (in the event).”
Prospect also won the 400 relay as Catherine Sherwood, a qualifier in the long jump, led off the quartet.
Erin Reese was a twin qualifier in the two throwing events for the Knights.
But the Knights’ junior was overshadowed — as were all of her fellow throwers — by Rolling Meadows’ Morgan Keller.
The Illinois State-bound senior was untouchable in both events, uncorking the discus 150 feet, 2 inches to set a personal best by more than 4 feet.
“My last three throws (in finals) were 148, 149 and 150,” Keller said. “I have been flirting with 150 (feet) for a while. I have always wanted to throw that distance.”
Keller, third in state last year in the shot put, was over 44 feet in the discipline for her other triumph.
Jennifer Donnell continued the local theme by qualifying in both throws for Conant. Tracy Iroegbulem was the only runner to qualify for Conant, via her runner-up result in the 200 dash.Copyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.