CHARLESTON — Fives were wild for the Bureau Valley Storm in Saturday’s finals of the IHSA 1A Boys State Track and Field Championships at Eastern Illinois University.
The Storm ran in two relay finals Saturday and claimed fifth-place medals in both — the 4x800 relay and the 4x400 relay. Both efforts were school records.
“Both races were tough,” said BV senior Daniel Trone, who ran in each race, “and we’re happy with how we did.”
“It was a nice way to finish off the year,” said senior Colton Peterson, who also ran in both relays. “We set goals coming in to state and I think we went beyond achieving them by setting two new school recods and finishing fifth in both relays.”
BV coach Jeff Ohlson said his relays lived up and exceeded all his expections for them, mostly looking out for each other.
“They’re a great group of kids that ran real well,” he said. “They’re seniors, it’s their last time running. And they wanted to do well not only for themselves and the school and the program, but for each other. I think that was the key. They’re a pretty close group my seniors I had on that.”
Saturday’s efforts were the first time in school history the Storm had medaled in two relays. Last year marked the first time the Storm had medaled in any relay, placing eighth in the 4x400.
The Bureau Valley 4x800 had been a work in progress for most of the season, senior Ryan Taylor said. The Storm came to Charleston as the No. 1 seed in 1A as sectional champion with a time of 8 minutes, 12.48 seconds. After Thursday’s prelims, Taylor, Kane Eastwood, Colton Peterson and Trone secured the fifth top time heading into Saturday’s finals with a time of 8:09.63.
And that’s right where they finished, fifth with a time of 8:09.08.
“Throughout the season I really didn’t know what we could do in the 4x8,” Taylor said. “We switched it up a couple of times and finally at sectionals we put it all together and after sectionals I knew we could do something great at state. It was definitely a great feeling ending my career with my friends on that podium.”
Bureau Valley ended the day right where they started, standing proudly in the fifth-place slot on the awards podium for the 4x400. The Storm turned in a 3:26.78 on the legs of Trone, Tucker Schoff, Peterson and Eastwood.
“We knew we could do some big things if we worked at it and the medals show how determined and dedicated we were to get where we are,” Schoff said.
With their twin fifth-place finishes, earning five points each, the Storm were among eight teams sharing 22nd place in team standings with 10 points. Two rival Three Rivers teams, fourth-place Newman (30) and sixth-place Erie/Prophetstown (21) were among the 1A leaders. Aurora Christian edged Eureka 46.5 to 42 for the State title.
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