LOCKPORT – John Meyer’s state-best shot put of 66 feet, 6 inches from last week’s SouthWest Suburban Conference Blue Division meet didn’t last long.
Competing at his home facility in Thursday’s Class 3A Lockport Sectional in front of some interested college coaches, the Porters’ junior turned in a new record toss, a 67-2 effort that reached the grass.
That effort in his third throw in the preliminaries was just the start of a big night in field events for the hosts, who collected the majority of their points in that area. Meyer, the defending state champion in shot put also turned in a PR in winning discus, where he went 184-7.
“I’m just always trying to stay consistent,” Meyer said. “I just wanted to get a good mark for state, that’s for sure. I threw a 65, a 66 and a 67-2, so I’m feeling pretty confident about the state meet. The 67-2 snapped right off of my wrist, and it came out so quick and I knew that it would be far.
“Once I feel the snap in the wrist, I know that it’s going to be a good throw, like 65-0 and up, somewhere in there. In practice, we’re going to work a lot on staying consistent in the ring. And I want to work harder on discus, too, since I want to place top five at state in that.”
With the 4x400 relay remaining, coach Tom Razo’s Porters led the strong field with 73 points, while Downers Grove North (70) was second. The Trojans earned the championship with 78 points after taking second in the final event.
Conor McCarthy was second in long jump (22-10.5) and third in triple jump (45-4.5) and qualified in both events. Andrew Novak tied for second in the pole vault (12-7) and Kevin Pokorski finished second in shot put (53-10).
“Field events were our strength all year long, but there were big-time performances for those guys,” Razo said. “John had the monster throws, Conor PR’ed in both long and triple, Kevin also qualified and Andrew qualified in pole vault.
“If you would have told me that we’d be the top team in the sectional at this point in the meet, it would be a little shocking. But the kids did well and are scoring points here and there. It was exciting.”
Bolingbrook got a big performance from senior Tyler Elmore, who advanced to state for the fourth-straight year and will be competing in three events next weekend in Charleston.
He won the 100 in :10.71 and the 200 in :21.84 and he also was the leadoff runner on a 4x100 relay (:42.29) which included Shawn Showalter. Nana Akenten and Josh Perakis. The Raiders also got second from Lean Nepomuceno in pole vault (12-7).
“We wanted to get momentum going into state,” Elmore said. “My coaches have been working hard with me making sure that I get my start down for the 100 and also for the 4x1. The guys on the 4x1 have spent a lot of time working on handoffs and trying to build the chemistry up as much as we can before the state meet and see how well we can do.
“The coaches have done a really good job of getting us in to big meets. Any time we can go against good competition, it’s good.”
Romeoville was led by Xavier Jones, who took fourth place in both triple jump (44-6.5) and long jump (22-2.75) and qualified in each event. This is the first state trip for the Spartans junior. Also, Joe Otchere took second place in the 200 (:22.02).
“I’m really excited since they pushed me today and motivated me to do what I had to do and they got me down there,” Jones said. “It’s all about my coaches, since they pushed me, too, and kept me focused. It feels great going down as a junior since I have another year to prepare to do better.
“My goal was never about anything other than going downstate. Over the year, every other meet was a PR and I kept getting better. It’s going to be a nervous and exciting experience, but I’m ready for it.”
Lemont also got a state qualifier in David Lebenbauer, who took third in high jump (6-3).