Girls track and field: Ammenhauser leads Big Ten recruits at Lockport

By Kevin McGavin
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 6/3/2021 9:58 PM

Riley Ammenhauser gave the pandemic a piece of her mind Thursday evening in Lockport.

Robbed of an opportunity to become the first four-time large-class triple jump state champion in state history last spring with the cancellation of the girls track and field season, the Michigan-bound Ammenhauser was unassailable for Neuqua Valley.


Ammenhauser began her three individual victories by soaring 19 feet, 4.25 inches in the long jump.

It was only a chance to get loose.

On her second triple-jump attempt, Ammenhauser sensed history with a triumphant raise of her arms after landing in the sand pit.

The mark fell an inch shy of 43 feet.

Former Homewood-Floosmoor great Jaimie Robinson holds the state record -- acknowledged only at the state finals -- at 42-8.5.

Ammenhauser then outdueled DuPage Valley Conference rival Itzel Garcia (Waubonsie Valley), who later claimed the 200-meter dash, by three one-hundredths of a second to add the 100 in 12.23 seconds.

"I am inching closer and closer to 43 feet," Ammenhauser said. "I am super excited to get a PR that I have been trying for over a year. I have been working so hard this year. I wanted to score as many points for the team as I could."

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The two distance races featured three future Big Ten recruits as well.

Cross-country standouts Sam Poglitsch and Maggie Gamboa will be teammates at Illinois next fall.

The respective athletes from Naperville North and Wheaton Warrenville South will be top guns at the Class 3A state finals a week from Saturday in Charleston with their wins at 3,200 and 1,600 meters.

"The thirty-two is a strong suit for me," Gamboa said after her romp in 10:53.58.

"This was my (state) prelims," Poglitsch said after storming past Naperville North state headliners Audrey Mendrys (Indiana) and Campbell Petersen (Alabama) in the metric mile.

"There is none (at state). I was on the blue track (the famed surface at Eastern Illinois University), with people in the stands watching me."


Allison Comer and Sarah McCracken were double champions in the Naperville Central sprint relays at 400 and 800 meters; the former added a third crown in the open 400.

Benet senior Elisabeth Camic also had a relay and individual sectional championship with wins in the four-by-800 as well as the open metric half-mile.

In the field, Naperville North junior Madeline Andelbradt upheld her top seed in the high jump with authority. Andelbradt leapt 5-7.5.

Neuqua Valley freshman Inara Ukuwaba was the final local individual champion on the track (100 hurdles).

Naperville North won the team title with 113 points; WW South was runner-up, followed by Neuqua Valley, Naperville Central and Lockport.

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