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updated: 5/24/2014 9:49 PM

Aurora Christian wins Class 1A state title

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  • Aurora Christian's Peyton Wade competes in the 100-meter high hurdles during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Christian's Peyton Wade competes in the 100-meter high hurdles during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Kaneland's Maddie Keifer competes in the class 2A high jump during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Kaneland's Maddie Keifer competes in the class 2A high jump during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Kaneland's Christina Delach competes in the class 2A pole during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Kaneland's Christina Delach competes in the class 2A pole during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Rosary girls celebrate during the medals ceremony after the 4x400-meter relay during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Rosary girls celebrate during the medals ceremony after the 4x400-meter relay during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Aurora Central Catholic teammates hold up the class 1A championship trophy during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Central Catholic teammates hold up the class 1A championship trophy during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Rosary's Emily Bakala, right, hands off to Molly Stefanski in the class 2A 4x400-meter relay during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Rosary's Emily Bakala, right, hands off to Molly Stefanski in the class 2A 4x400-meter relay during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Aurora Christian's Natasha Brown wins the class 1A 200-meter dash during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Christian's Natasha Brown wins the class 1A 200-meter dash during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Aurora Christian's Natasha Brown, left, is edged out at the finish lone by Sullivan's Amanda McClain in the class 1A 4x200-meter relay during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Christian's Natasha Brown, left, is edged out at the finish lone by Sullivan's Amanda McClain in the class 1A 4x200-meter relay during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Aurora Central Catholic's Karina Liz reacts after winning the class 2A 800-meter run during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Central Catholic's Karina Liz reacts after winning the class 2A 800-meter run during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Aurora Central Catholic's Karina Liz reacts after winning the class 2A 800-meter run during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Central Catholic's Karina Liz reacts after winning the class 2A 800-meter run during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

  • Aurora Central Catholic's Karina Liz finishes well ahead of the pack as she wins the class 2A 800-meter run during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.

       Aurora Central Catholic's Karina Liz finishes well ahead of the pack as she wins the class 2A 800-meter run during the girls track and field state finals at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston Friday.
    Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

 
 

CHARLESTON -- Aurora Christin proved on Saturday that a track and field state championship can be earned with the same number of contributors as a basketball team.

One year after finishing third in the girls Class 1A state finals, the Eagles' five athletes to make the final day made the most of their skills.

Tied with Tremont with two events remaining, Natasha Brown essentially secured the first team state title in any girls sport at the school with her victory in the 200-meter dash at 25.37 seconds.

The 4-point differential with the Brown triumph enabled Aurora Christian to post 49 points Saturday afternoon at O'Brien Stadium on the campus of Eastern Illinois University.

Neither team qualified a quartet for the 1,600 relay, meaning the Eagles secured the championship by 4 points over Tremont.

"I just decided that I was going to go out there and give everything that I had," Brown said. "All the hard work has paid off."

Brown also teamed with Alyssa Anderson, Meghan Hagerty and Hope Montalbo for a pair of runner-up finishes in the two sprint relays at 400 and 800 meters.

"They love competing together," Aurora Christian coach Anna McQuade said of the sprinters. "They made a few adjustments once they got here, and it was critical to the first-ever girls state championship."

The remaining 23 points scored by Aurora Christian came courtesy of Peyton Wade; the Maryland-bound senior did not defend any of her individual titles in the high jump or 100 hurdles.

But Wade, who has been slowed all spring by a hamstring injury, gutted out 23 points via second-place showings in the high jump (5 feet, 7 inches) and long jump (18-2.5).

Wade was also third in the short hurdles.

"I definitely could have done better," Wade said. "I couldn't train as hard as I wanted to."

Karina Liz became the fourth state champion in the history of Aurora Central Catholic girls track.

Exorcising her runner-up finish last year in the Class 2A 800, the Chargers' sophomore completed an undefeated season with the finest time of her brief career.

Liz turned a short lead at the gun lap into a runaway championship, running 2:10.73 to break the year-old state record in the middle-tier division.

"My mindset was that I had work this third 200 (split) because I knew people were going to get tired," said Liz, who ended up winning by more than five seconds. "When we got to the 300 mark, I knew I had to pick it up again. I knew that I have done everything I possibly could this season."

Kaneland freshman Nicole Sreenan was the Knights' workhorse in place of injury-addled senior stalwart Lauren Zick.

Sreenan was all-state in four events after placing third in the open 400 to augment an eighth-place showing in the 100.

The Knights' 400 and 1,600 relays also placed behind Sreenan.

"It hasn't really hit me yet that I have won all this," Sreenan said. "I still feel like I have to go to practice on Tuesday."

Rosary received all-state efforts from Sarah Nyaeme in the triple jump, Madison Ronzone in the 1,600 run and its 1,600 relay.

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