Boys track and field: Downers Grove North wins 3A Glenbard North Sectional

Trojans win five individual events, one relay on way to team crown

Downers Grove North’s Ryan Eddington, left, takes the baton from Grant Schroder in the 3,200-meter relay during the Class 3A Glenbard North boys track and field sectional on Thursday, May 16, 2024 in Carol Stream.

CAROL STREAM – It was almost like a rocket ship taking off.

Just about halfway through the 3,200-meter run at Thursday’s Class 3A Glenbard North track sectional, Wheaton Warrenville South junior Josiah Narayanan kicked it into a next-level gear.

Narayanan shot to the head of the pack and stayed there, winning the 3,200 in a personal-record time of 9:09.93.

It was almost 26 seconds faster than his nearest competitor, who also happened to be a WW South classmate.

Junior Aidan Noel of the Tigers was second and the two will head to state together.

The state meet will be next Thursday through Saturday at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston.

“Coach was planning to just have us sit,” Narayanan said of the big move at the midway point, “but plans changed at the mile and he decided to have us start going.”

Narayanan also might have been more enthused about his teammate’s runner-up finish than his own win, if that’s possible. He said instead of looking up at the clock for his time after the race was over, he was looking back to see the placement of Noel.

Downers Grove North won the team crown with 109 points. WW South was second with 85.

“It’s been a great year and it’s been good to get to this point,” said Trojans coach Andrew Adelmann. “We were excited to come out here tonight.

The Trojans started on the right foot with a win in the 4x800 relay, the first running event of the evening.

Will Surratt, a sophomore, was the leadoff racer for the foursome that included Ryan Eddington, Philip Cupial and Grant Schroeder.

“I just wanted to get out and run my race,” Surratt said. “This is exciting, especially considering I’ve got two more years left.”

Adelmann said Surratt was a clutch performer in cross country and has carried his excellence over to the track.

“He’s a great athlete and has stepped up big for us this year,” Adelmann said. “We know we can always count on him to give us his best performance. He’s tough as nails.”

Other winners of note who will advance to state (along with runners-up and those who met or exceeded the state-qualifying marks) include Cash Langley of York (100) and Mason Ellens of Glenbard West (200).

Eddington of Downers North won the 800; Emanuel Murphy of Downers North triumphed in the 400; while teammate Cupial took the 1,600.

Noah Heiber of Rolling Meadows was fastest in the 110 hurdles at 14.88.

Amari Williams from WW South was the winner of the 300 hurdles, and the Tigers also won the 4x100 relay and the 4x200 relay. York grabbed the top spot in the 4x400 relay.

In the field events, winners included Joey Michelini of Lake Park in the shot put and teammate Jimmy Celli in the discus. Evan Weder from Willowbrook was first in the high jump, while Vince Davero of Downers North took the long jump and the triple jump.

In the pole vault, a change in technique led Lake Park’s Vinny Lanzito to a big victory at the height of 4.47.

This February, he began to use the “tuck and shoot” style, according to coach Maribeth Juraska, and it has led to unparalleled success.

“It just goes to show you,” Juraska said, “that when you use flexible coaching methods, and you have coachable, coachable athletes like Vinny, you can garner something like this.”

Lanzito said he was focused on the task at hand.

“I was just doing my technique,” he said, “and trusting it.”