Keelan dominates in Wanner Knights 1600 Meter Run win

Jack Keelan of St. Ignatius comes away victorious at the Prospect Wanner Invitational Mike Newman/ESPNHS


Mt. Prospect, Ill --- For the first 400 meters of the 1600 Meter Run, Jack Keelan (St. Ignatius, Chicago Ill) bided his time of the back of the pack. He was more concerned with where he would be at the end of the race. He took those matters into his own feet and took control of the race just before the 800 meter point. He cruised to an easy looking at the Wanner Knights Invitational.

“I got a little boxed in. It was completely my fault,” the junior said after his race. “I wanted to go out in 2:10, 2:11 and see what I could do.”

While Keelan was boxed in at the beginning, Robert Somary (Hersey, Arlington Hts, Ill) took the early pace setting duties taking a pack including Dan Roe (Buffalo Grove, Ill), David Timlin (Lane Tech, Chicago, Ill), and Billy Clink (York, Elmhurst Ill) through the first 400 in 64.5 seconds. Keelan found a way out of the pack and took the lead right before the 800 in 2:11.0. At that point, Roes tried to stay with him. Keelan was daring the other runners to stay with him as he took the next 400 in a breakneck 62 seconds. But on this evening, simply no one could.

Keelan kept the pace through the final 400 accelerating slightly in the last 200 to cross the finish in 4:14.95, a personal best and the 2nd fastest time in this event only behind Jonathan Schaap of Mahomet-Seymour. Roe finished three and a half seconds behind Keelan followed by Timlin and Clink.

Keelan splits: 66.1, 2:11.0, 3:13.4, 4:14.9

This invitational is known for the distance races that are assembled by Meet Director Mike Stokes. Though there was not the star power that we have seen in the past, the competition was still great.

The wind was still strong as the gun fired for the 3200 Meter run. The field was content to stay behind race favorite Erik Peterson (Barrington, Ill). Peterson took the pack through the first 1600 in 4:40 with the Niles North duo of Micah Beller and Aron Sebhat, York’s Nathan Mroz, and Buffalo Grove’s Jereme Atchison.

500 Meters later, Peterson made a surge that gave him a 10 meter sepration from the rest of the pack. When he passed the line with one lap to go, he seemed to be struggling as he went by in 8:12.5. Closing in on him was Mroz and Sebhat.

With about 250 meters to go, Sebhat made a move past the York sophomore and had his sights on the slowing Peterson.

“On that final curve, I saw his shadow and made one more move,” said Peterson. The recognition of his competitor’s shadow gave him an extra burst of energy and a one secord win over Sebhat on this night. Mroz finished 3rd in a new PR.

“I think it went out the window during the third lap. I guess it just was not happening tonight,” Peterson said. “I tough someone would lead through the first 400, but I guess it is all right. I felt comfortable through the first mile. I started to feel it around the seventh lap. I think the wind really picked up then. I’m happy, but I still have a lot of work still to do.”

Peterson splits: 68.6, 2:19.1, 3:29.6, 4:40.0, 5:49.8, 7:02.4, 8:12.3, 9:17.3

Host Prospect gears up for the 3200 Meter Relay every year at this invitational. This is their race and they do not want anyone to take their title on their home track. You could sense that on this evening. On the first exchange, it was anyone’s race with Niles West’s Marc-Daniel Julien giving the Wolfpack an early lead over host Prospect, Naperville Central, York, aand Lane Tech.

The Knights took the race on Daniel Troutman’s second leg. York’s Alex Baughman closed on Troutman, but the Prospect senior still held the lead at the second exchange.

The race was still tight on the third leg. At the final exchange, Prospect had a seven tenth’s of a second lead over York and Naperville Central. Lane Tech and Niles West were 2 seconds back, but both schools were saving their big guns for last: David Timlin for Lane Tech and Neal Omar of Niles West.

Josh Campos held on the final 800 meters to secure the win for the Knights, but it took a 1:56.4 leg for him to keep that. Both Timlin and Omar charged from behind to get second and third respectively. Timlin’s final split was 1:54.6, Omar’s a sizzling 1:53.5.



Mike Thill 2:00.3

Dan Troutman 2:00.8

Max Daledien 2:03.5

Josh Campos 1:56.4

In 2011, it was Prospect that narrowly won the team title. On this night it was all York. The Dukes 30 + point win over Prospect was keyed by wins by their Frosh/Soph Sprint Medley (3:43.0), Nick Sgarbossa in the Pole Vault (14-9), Reid Smith in the High Jump (5-11), and Paul Golen in the Discus (160-7).

The only double winner in the meet was Prospect’s hurdler Dave Kendziera in the 110 (14.87) and the 300 hurdles (40.80). The intermediate win was a mere seven hundredths of a second over Lino Mogorovic (Lyons Township, La Grange Ill).

Despite the unseasonably cool weather, their were some great performances in the field events. Matt Harris (Lyons Township, LaGrange Ill) took advantage of a strong tail wind and popped a state leading 23-5.25 jump in his final jump of the preliminary round. That jump gave him a 2 foot win over York sophomore Matt Arce.

A.J Scarbrough (Barrington, Ill) dominated his competition once again Friday evening. He bounded 46-6.50 to win by four feet over Matt Duncan (Zion-Benton Township, Zion Ill) in the Triple Jump.

Mark Balmes (Hersey, Arlington Hts Ill) continued to prove he will be a force to be reckoned with in the Shot Put. The senior won at Mt. Prospect on Friday putting the shot 56-10, a 2 foot win over Matt Dziedzic (Libertyville, Ill).