Eagles’ relay team second at state
Second-best isn’t so bad when contenders emerge from across an entire state.
That’s the position Sandburg’s 3,200-meter relay team held after that race was run Saturday afternoon at the Class 3A boys’ state track meet in Charleston. Owners of the fastest time in Friday’s prelims at O’Brien Stadium, the Eagles couldn’t quite duplicate that feat when first-place medals were at stake.
They actually bettered their Friday clocking by nearly six seconds, but Neuqua Valley completed the event .56 seconds ahead of Sandburg, which finished in 7 minutes, 40.77 seconds on Saturday. Matt Hetzler, Denis O’Callaghan, Chris Torpy and Sean Torpy comprised the Eagles’ relay quartet, which began its assault on possible gold with a 7:47.56 effort at the Romeoville Sectional.
That time was second-best among 25 qualifiers, and then Sandburg lowered it to 7:46.53 in its state prelims heat.
O’Callaghan also took part in the 1,600-run downstate. He had qualified for state by covering the distance in 4:17.49 at Romeoville, the eight-fastest time among 39 qualifiers in the event.
O’Callaghan reduced his time to 4:14.94 in the state prelims, which positioned him fourth in his heat, but he was unable to maintain that pace in the final. Instead, he clocked a 4:29.11 to place 12th.
O’Fallon senior Patrick Perrier was first in the race, which he completed in 4:10.34.
All area players who qualified for last week’s state meet were eliminated on the first day of competition at various north suburban sites.
The only wins in 14 matches were posted by Stagg junior Brendan Wolan and Sandburg sophomore Jonluke Passett, both of whom went 1-2. Each player triumphed in his first-round consolation match.
Stagg’s doubles team of Muzamil Ali-Khan-Warren Wudtke and Sandburg’s tandem of Jimmy Gradowski-Trent Sichelski both dropped two consecutive matches — one in the consolation round — and Chicago Christian’s pair of Charlie Blim-Josh Mollema did likewise.