ALAH Boys Capture 49th Invitational Team Title!!! The Arthur Lovington Atwood Hammond Knights’ boys track and field team scored 112 points to take first place in their own annual Invitational. This was the 49th Invite,which was started in 1972 but lost a couple of years during the last two seasons when it was not held. Pictured here with the first place trophy are front row: Alex Rexroad, Jacob Adcock, Keaton Korando, Mason Allen, Max Allen, Jace Green, Jacob Duzan, and Gavin Mechling. Back row: Jacob Tighe, Coach Matt Thomas, Logan Beckmier, Carter Pratt, Austin Abercrombie, Ryan Appleby, and Garrett Casteel.
After a 2 year hiatus plus a 24 hour weather delay, the Arthur Invitational returned Saturday, April 9 for the 49th rendition of a Central Illinois staple of high school track and field. And oh what a return it was with 6 meet records broken and 1 record tying effort plus a plethora of state leading and top 10 performances. And to make the day complete, our ALAH Knights men win the team title with a combination of elite performances and team depth. The Knights outscored Decatur St. Teresa 112 to 101 to secure the biggest trophy. A total of 13 teams participated.
The fireworks started early with the men’s discus featuring an elite set of state leading throwers. CHBC’s Iowa bound strongman Dan Lucas was the star in both rings. His state leading 163’8” throw besting Boyd of Tuscola and Meyers of Arcola with both going over 150 ft. Meyers had a monster foul that may have been good enough to top the field. The Knight’s Austin Abercrombie throws the platter a PR of 140’5” to go 4th and rank 7th state wide. Lucas really set the large gathering of spectators oohing and aahing in the Shot Put ring. His 60’3” bomb becoming the #1 throw in Illinois. This broke Matt McCarthy’s 22 year old meet record by an incredible 2 feet. The big guys put on quite a show. Our other discus man, Tanner Beckmier throws a PR of 114’3” just missing out of the scoring in 10th place. Jacob Tighe throws 33’2” in the SP.
Across the track, CHBC’s other standout Senior was not to be outdone by his teammate. Jadon Robertson ties the High Jump record with a state best 6’6” and has an excellent near miss at 6’8”. He takes the Long Jump at a state #2 mark of 21’2 ½”. The SIU bound athlete was just warming up. He breaks meet records in both hurdle events clearing the 110 highs in 14.9 and the 300 lows in 40.14. Both are #1 times for Illinois Class 1A. Robertson and Lucas make Cowden Herrick Beecher City a favorite to win the Class 1A State Title.
ALAH standout Senior sprinter, Max Allen, was a triple winner on the boys side. He sweeps the sprints highlighted with state leading times in the 200 & 400. His furlong time of 22.68 besting the meet record as well as his own school record! Max’s 100 time is an Illinois top 10 time.
The Knight’s distance crew prevailed again with Jace Green winning the 1600 in a state #2 time of 4:42.36. He was followed close behind by Logan Beckmier in a state #5 time of 4:47.7. Beckmier’s dominate win in the 3200 (10:09.87) is the state’s 5th best 1A time. The 4×800 Relay team of Binder, Duzan, Lyle Adcock and Green topped the ALAH relay efforts finishing 2nd. Jacob Duzan and Lyle Adcock go 3rd and 5th in the 800 behind an excellent sub 2 minute effort by Arcola’s Edwards. Jake Adcock runs a 10:34.73 PR (State #13) to place 6th in the 3200.
Landon Waldrop continues his improvement in the horizontal jumps finishing 2nd in both. His Triple Jump ranking 8th state wide while going over 20ft for the second consecutive meet with a state #11 leap of 20’2 ½”.
Other scoring boys were Carter Pratt in 200 @25.5 (8th), Abercrombie in SP @ 40’11 ¾” (3rd), 4×100 Relay of Max and Mason Allen, Keaton Korando, Landon Waldrop (3rd), 4×200 Relay of Pratt, Austin Stutzman, Gavin Mechling, Mason Allen (6th) and 4×400 Relay of Mechling, Korando, Green, & Mason Allen (4th). Ryan Appleby placed 10th in the 110 HH and 14th in the 300 Hurdles. Alex Rexroad goes 13th in the 300H.
The Lady Knights finish a very credible 4th in the team scoring. Tuscola dominated the team race with their 1-2 punch of Murray State bound Alyssa Williams and Freshman Lia Patterson doing most of the damage in the 100, 200, LJ, and both hurdle races. Williams the defending state sprint/LJ champ breaks the meet 200 record in 26.18. Alexa Miller runs 3rd there for ALAH. Williams also wins the 100 just off the meet record with Miller in 2nd. Patterson wins both hurdles by large margins and runs the 300 event in 45.27 to break Kenli Nettles 2019 record of 46.0. These young ladies lead the state in all 4 events and Patterson also leads the state 400 list.
Alexa Miller was the lone victor for the ALAH ladies dominating the Triple Jump by nearly a foot going 33’3” that ranks 12th state wide. Other scoring ladies were Emma Edwards with another PR going 3rd in the 300 Hurdles (52.46), Emma Jones/8th/300 Hurdles (63.13) and 6th in 100 Hurdles (21.07), Brook Clark with a 2nd place PR in Discus at 106’5”, Makayla Harsbarger 4th in Shot Put at 29’8 ¼” and 8th in Discus at 82’8”. Lillian Edwards finished 12th in LJ @ 10’5”. Lindsay Rohacs runs to 10th in the 1600 @ 7:13.68 PR.
All of the ALAH distaff relays scored led by the 3rd place 4 x 100 team of Miller, Vorck, Beachy & Zander. The 4 x200 quartet of Beachy, Edwards, Vorck and Zander places 4th. The 4×8 group of Hutchcraft, Edwards, Rafferty, and Rohacs goes 3rd and the 4×4 team of Rafferty, Rohacs, Hutchcraft and Edwards finishes the meet in 6th.
This week the boys travel to Monticello on Thursday for the Sages Invite. Both teams load the bus to Warrensburg-Latham for a make up meet on Saturday.