Boys track and field: Naperville Central wins DuPage County meet
The 87th DuPage County Boys Track & Field Championships were so close two teams left Glenbard South's track thinking they'd won Friday's meet.
When Wheaton North's Eli Odell cranked out a 48.8-second relay split in the anchor role of the 1,600-meter relay, blasting to first from fourth in the race, it appeared the Falcons won their first county title since 2015.
However, when results from two prior events were added -- notably the 200 dash in which Naperville Central's Cade McDonald and Dylan Greenhagen finished second and fifth, respectively -- final scores listed the Redhawks as the winner with 102 points to Wheaton North's 101 and WW South's 100.5.
"If that's true, I think that's a credit to my kids," said Naperville Central coach Steve Wiesbrook. "They just came out and performed. They just kept coming and kept coming and believed in themselves."
With McDonald aboard, the Redhawks' 400 and 800 relays ran season-best times to win. In addition to his second-place 200-meter dash, McDonald finished third in the 100 behind WW South's Cedric Rowzee, who made up meters to nip Lake Park's Adam Waitr, 10.76 seconds to 10.79. Rowzee flew to the 200 title in 22.19 seconds.
Glenbard North's Ryan Treanor took out the 800 like a rabbit, but the Redhawks' Thomas Shilgalis was there at the end, at 1:56.63 to top York's sub-two-minute duo of Michael Moriarty and Ethan Kern.
"It's one step closer to state and whatnot, so I'm excited," Shilgalis said.
Scott Maison was super-excited. Though he ran in the slow heat of the 800, it was his first race of the season, coming back from a lower leg strain. He won that heat to place 10th overall.
"It's been eight and a half weeks," he said. "I haven't really had a track season. I've been stuck on the elliptical in our training room the whole time, and it's super-exciting to finally be on a track and just competing."
His brother, Sean Maison, rallied with 60 meters left to win the 1,600 on a lean over Griffin McLean of Naperville North -- which, with Will deBolt winning the 400 and Nick Trattner and Jake Allen going 1-2 in the 3,200 had a solid fourth-place finish, just ahead of York.
"I knew they were going to kick it in. I just kind of wish I went a little earlier so it didn't have to be that close," said Sean Maison, a repeat county 1,600 winner.
Though both cleared 14 feet, 6 inches, Lake Park's Zach Frye won pole vault over WW South's Jake MacConnachie on prior misses. Wheaton North scored big points in throws, Trevor Gabrielle and Ryan Maloney going 1-2 in shot put and Grayson Therron winning discus. In discus, Waubonsie Valley's Richard Morris placed second at 150-8, a 10-foot personal record.
Willowbrook's Deandre Holliday was the sole high jumper over 6 feet, for a 3-inch PR at 6-3.
"The conditions aren't that good, but I thought I took advantage of the moment," said Holliday, who changed his form "in the middle of the meet" to gain success.
Wheaton North's Evan Lendy changed his long jump form before Friday. He went back two strides, which Falcons jumps coach Rob Graf said provided speed and confidence. Results, too. Lendy went 21-10¾ to win.
"Especially seeing a 21 on my first jump after not seeing a 21 all year, it definitely boosted my confidence," Lendy said. "Freshman year was the last time I won anything important, really, so it means a lot."