Boys Track: 2012 season preview

Thursday, April 5 2012 - Ottawa Township High School Triangular Track Meet - Desmond Gant


Boys Track: 2012 season preview

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Aurora Central Catholic's Joe Fese (second from right) is back to lead the Chargers this season | FILE~Sun-Times Media


Updated: April 2, 2012 2:23AM



Coach: Troy Kerber.

Last year: Second in the Suburban Christian.

Key returnees: Sr. – Alex Duncan (mid-dist.), Matt Marter (mid-dist./relays); Jr. – Joe Fese (sprints/relays), Zack Flint (sprints/relays/jumps), Adrian Alviar (mid-dist.), Simon LaFromboise (PV), Liam Rettenmeier (hurdles), Juan Arroyo (relays/jumps), Javier Liz (relays/sprints); Soph. – Matt Meyers (mid-dist./relays), Cody Ekstrom (sprints/relays), Ricardo Bustas (relays), Patrick Lefevre (jumps/hurdles), Jacob Dressel (jumps/hurdles).

Top newcomers: Soph. – Colin Hendrick (hurdles/jumps), Matt Knapp (mid-dist.), Gilberto Cervantes (distance); Fresh. – Tyler Garcia (mid-dist.), Daniel Aquino (mid-dist./relays), Joey Perez (sprints/jumps).

Outlook: Chargers will look to qualify athletes for state for the 20th year in a row and hope to improve field event performance to challenge Marmion, Walther Lutheran and St. Francis for the SCC title. “If we stay healthy and focused we could be pretty strong as a team by the end of the season,” said Kerber, noting he has a school-record number of athletes out for the program with 86 boys and 59 girls out for the sport. Fese, one of the state’s top Class 2A sprinters, heads a group of eight returning athletes with state meet experience.


Coach: Dr. Jeff Schutt.

Last year: not available.

Key returnees: Sr. – Nate Jensen (sprints/relays), Billy Howorth (PV/400/relays), C.J. Schutt (TJ), Cody Salmans (PV/relays), Quienten Boston (discus); Jr. – Jake Gehman (800/relays); Soph. – Jonathan Harrell (LJ/sprints/relays), Jonah Walker (throws), Dillon Howorth (sprints/relays).

Top newcomers: Jr. – Victor Roza (shot put/sprints/relays); Fresh. – Joshua Schien, Nick Van Gilse, Ross Krantz, Caleb Lopez, Kolling Schalhamer, Peter Allcorn.

Outlook: Eagles bolstered by a strong group of veterans, including all four runners (Billy Howorth, Jensen, Gehman and Harrell) from 1600 relay team that finished third in state last year.


Coach: Shane Gillespie.

Last year: Seventh in the Upstate Eight Valley.

Key returnees: Sr. – Daniel Astorga (throws), Ricky Barajas (distance); Jr. – Erick Acosta (jumps); Soph. – Desmond Gant (sprints), Jamaria Littleton, Aarion Mitchell (sprints), Qahir Phillips.

Top newcomers: Jr. – DeJuan Talbert (jumps), Stephen Green (jumps/sprints), Miguel Lira (sprints); Fresh. – Christian Castro (distance).

Outlook: Gillespie says his young team has grown together over the past year. “We plan to fly under the radar a bit, but once all our (basketball) athletes are out, we will have the strongest overall squad that we have had in several years,” he said. “We hope to be competitive in conference and qualify several athletes for state.”


Coach: Greg Burks.

Last year: not available.

Key returnees: Jr. – Mike Bayler (jumps/sprints), Mack Carls (throws), Joey Scheller (distance), Bill Weissinger (jumps/sprints); Soph. – T.J. Gavin (hurdles/sprints).

Top newcomers: Jr. – Andrew Klambauer (jumps/sprints); Fresh. – Ty Binkley (throws), Jeremy Perales (distance).

Outlook: Burks calls it a “typical Hinckley-Big Rock track team. We have some quality individuals capable of scoring in big meets but we lack numbers and depth in most events.”


Coach: Eric Baron.

Last year: Won Northern Illinois Big 12 East title.

Key returnees: Sr. – Sean Carter (sprints), Miroljub Marin (mid-dist.), Clayton Brundige (mid-dist.), Luis Acosta (mid-dist.); Jr. – Kory Harner (PV), Brandon Cottier (sprints/relays); Soph. – Brandon Bishop (sprints/relays), Jesse Balluff (sprints/relays).

Top newcomers: Sr. – Marcel Neil (jumps); Soph. – Brock Robertson (hurdles).

Outlook: Eight athletes with state meet experience, mostly in the relays, return for the Knights who look to replace big point scorers from last year in Matt Spitzeri, Trevor Holm, Tommy Whittaker and Taylor Andrews. “We have lost a great deal of experience,” said Baron. “How we gain that big meet experience will be telling of how good we can be.”


Coach: Dan Thorpe.

Last year: Won seventh straight conference title.

Key returnees: Sr. – Garret Becker (sprints/relays), Matt Choice (distance), Ben Cole (TJ), Emmanuel Dela Cruz (sprints/relays), Freddy d’Escoto (hurdles/jumps), Peter Gonzales, Brady Hunt (distance), Peter Stefanski (HJ). Jr. – Eric Anderson (distance), Chris Burrows (distance), Nick Delaney (distance), Charlie Faunce (hurdles), Eric Fitzgerald (sprints/relays), Liam O’Dea (distance), Peter West (400/relays); Sophs – Oscar Garza (throws), Kevin Grahovec (distance), Mike Montalbano (sprints/jumps), Enzo Olabi (sprints/relays), Seth Sevenich (hurdles/relays).

Top newcomers: Sr. – Blake Mickey (throws) Nolan Dickson (distance); Jr. – Jake Ruddy (LJ); Fresh. – Jordan Sullivan (sprints/relays).

Outlook: Cadets should again be strong in jumps and distance but Thorpe is concerned about lack of speed that could hurt in sprints and sprint relays. With their depth and great numbers, Cadets will contend for league title. Move up to Class 3A will hurt their chances of reaching state, however. Dickson, who previously competed in national triathlons, recently took fourth in the Prep Top Times 1600. Stefanski was third in the high jump in the same meet.


Coach: Aaron B. Lewis.

Last year: Fourth in Upstate Eight Valley.

Key returnees: Sr. – Joe Stewart (1600/3200), Matt Stewart (1600/3200), Will King (TJ/400), Jarrell Ross (100/LJ/HJ), Ben Hulett (hurdles), Mike Hennessy (800), Alan Williams (sprint relays), Tresean Mackey (400/relays), Raysean Parker (LJ/TJ); Jr. Jake Murawski (HJ/discus).

Top newcomers: Sr. – Chas Nelson (sprints/relays); Jr. – Luke Rozier (sprints).

Outlook: “Having lost no one to graduation, we are now a full program with all four classes and more than 100 athletes,” said Lewis. “Our strength this year is that we are now a much deeper team. Our first senior class is providing great leadership and outstanding performances.” Ross led the way at the Prep Top Times meet, taking fourth in the long jump, sixth in the 55 dash and seventh in the high jump. King was eighth in the triple jump.


Coach: Curt Schlinkmann.

Last year: Second in Northeastern Athletic Conference meet.

Key returnees: Jr. – Oumaru Abdulahi (HJ); Sr. – Noel Yarngo (hurdles).

Top newcomers: Jr. – Olawale Sanni (mid-dist.), Sammy Strickland (mid-dist.); Soph. – Aldrin Vinton (sprints), Farook Anifowshe (sprints), Brandon Gadson (mid-dist.), Fresh. – Hameed Odunewu (mid-dist.), Joe Feemorlu (sprints).

Outlook: Ramblers successfully defending their conference indoor title and look to add an outdoor crown this season. Abdulahi is defending state champ and Yarngo qualified for state in both hurdles, placing sixth in the 300s.


Coach: Jeff Edwards.

Last year: Sixth in the Southwest Prairie Conference.

Key returnees: Sr. – Zack Kingsbury (3200), Adam Lowry (800), Jared Konrardy (1600), Julian Mendez (sprints), Luis Flores (throws). Jr. – Caleb Beck (1600), Alain Dixon (TJ).

Top newcomers: Jr. – Devon Bice (sprints); Soph. – Deaireish Brady (sprints/relays).

Outlook: “I feel our strength is our distance program, where we have a lot of returning runners and should be competitive,” said Edwards. “We are a little down in the sprints this year but still have some athletes who are competitive and we have shown some improvement in our field events.”


Coach: Brad Kunz.

Last year: Second in Interstate Eight Conference.

Key returnees: Sr. – Joseph Jones (sprints/hurdles), Andrew Debolt (800/relays), Michael Miller (800/relays), Alfonso Macias (800/relays/1600/3200). Soph. – Weslye Brown (LJ/sprints/relays), Javon Montgomery (sprints/relays), Shaun Wollenweber (LJ/TJ/PV/relay).

Top newcomers: Sr. – Josh Rhotan (400/relays); Jr. – Austin Coffin (200/400), John Campbell (400/relays).

Outlook: Jones, the returning state champ in the 110 high hurdles and a qualifier in three other events, heads a group of seven athletes who are returning state qualifiers for the Reapers. Look for them to contend for a conference championship.


Coach: Andy Heilemeier.

Last year: 15-1 in dual meets and first in Interstate Eight indoor and outdoor meets.

Key returnees: Sr. – Trent Webber (TJ), Wyatt Brinegar (hurdles), Dale Strope (sprints), Joe Gaesser (dist./relays), Matt Lundeen (dist./relays); Jr. – Ryan Njegovan (throws); Soph. – Austin Breunig (sprints/jumps).

Top newcomers: Soph. – Alec Lidinsky (sprints/relays); Fresh. – Kody Randa (sprints/jumps), Marc Lidinsky (sprints/relays), Kyle Rogers (distance/relays).

Outlook: Webber, Brinegar and Strope are returning all-conference performers for a team that should again challenge for the conference title. “We have great numbers, so we’re very optimistic,” said Heilemeier. “It’s exciting because we do have some guys who will continue with track after high school.”


Coach: Kevin Rafferty.

Last year: Third in Upstate Eight Valley Conference.

Key returnees: Sr. – Jamaal Bearden (throws), Kyle Schafer (sprints/hurdles), Austin Ameri (sprints), Kyle Cluver (sprints), Eric Pembrook (distance), Demitrius Gray (sprints); Jr. – John Burke (sprints), Riley Kittridge (throws).

Top newcomers: Soph. – James Travis (jumps); Fresh. – Tony Durns (sprints).

Outlook: “We’re mostly a young group but we’ve got great senior leadership in the throws and sprints,” said Raffery, who expects his 800 and 1600 relays to be strong. That 1600 relay placed second at the Prep Top Times meet, where Kittridge was fifth and Bearden sixth in the shot put.


Coach: Cortney Lamb.

Last year: Third in DuPage Valley Conference, second at sectional.

Key returnees: Sr. – Vontrell Hawkins (800), Calvin Robinson (800), Josh Robinson (1600) Parrish McGhee (LJ/sprints), Royce Golembeck (PV), Mike Graham (sprints); Jr. – Zach Truckenbrod (800), Omar Gomez (3200), Robert Hererra (1600), Aaron Kennebrew (TJ), Benny Prunty (sprints).

Top newcomers: Sr. – Jonny Gosong (LJ), Seven Taylor (hurdles), Greg Roache (hurdles); Jr. – Marquette Sanchez (sprints), Tony Oros (sprints); Soph. – Anthony Powell (HJ).

Outlook: “We are well-rounded and able to score in many events,” said Lamb. “With some improvement, we should challenge for a top three finish at county, conference and sectional.”


Coach: Ben Draper.

Last year: Fourth in Northern Illinois Big 12 East.

Key returnees: Sr. – Chris Kellogg (mid-dist.), Jake Callahan (mid-dist.), Joe Haske (PV), Kyle Culp (sprints); Jr. – Zak Arcara (distance), Eric Baker (distance), Nick Harrison (distance), Chris Humphrey (sprints), Anton Jones (sprints).

Top newcomers: Sr. – Josh Williams (jumps); Fresh. – Jake Hoffert (distance), Luke Hoffert (distance), Tynan Leachman (sprints); Soph. – Kevin Ontiveros (sprints); Jr. – Latrell Williams (sprints).

Outlook: “We shift from 2A to 3A this season. Couple that with a young and inexperienced team and we are certainly in a transition period,” said Draper. “I think we will be very competitive throughout the regular season and at the conference meet, but it will be tough to get individuals down to the state meet this season. To qualify in 3A, we’d have to break a lot of school records.”

This is his biggest team ever, with 85 out for the season.