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Boys Track and Field: Thornton up to speed at Illinois Top Times meet

Updated: May 1, 2014 7:23AM



BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — A member of Thornton’s state champion 400-meter relay last year, Tifonte Hunt finished the 2014 indoor season back on top.

Hunt won the 60-meter hurdles and led off the first-place 800 relay Saturday in the Illinois Top Times meet at Illinois Wesleyan University.

“This was a nice finish indoors, yes,’’ Hunt said. “I want my times to get better outdoors.’’

Hunt won the 60 hurdles in 7.95 seconds in the unofficial indoor state meet at the Shirk Center.

“I knew I had to really go because there’s a lot of good competition here,’’ Hunt said. “I was trying to work on my trail leg because I’ve been hitting the hurdle a little. I thought my time was good.’’

Hunt led off Thornton’s winning 800 relay (1:31.64) that included Cavion Clanton, Martise Craig and Jauan Wesley. Hunt, Wesley and Clanton ran on the 2013 state champion 400 relay.

“I’m a little disappointed in the time,’’ Wesley said of the 800 relay. “It wasn’t the fastest we’ve run this year. We’re trying to get the fastest times. It’s supposed to be Prep Top Times. We want to run faster.’’

The high jump and pole vault points that helped Providence take second in the Class 3A state meet last year were on display again.

Providence senior Mike Monroe cleared 6 feet, 8 inches to win the high jump and junior Andy Jatis vaulted a personal best 15 feet to take second.

“I didn’t have a single miss the entire competition until 6-9,’’ Monroe said. “I didn’t get the height I wanted, but that’s because I have a few major bumps to work out of my system.’’

Monroe cleared 6-9 to take second in the state outdoors last season.

“I feel good right now, but I know that everyone else is going to get better,’’ Monroe said. “There’s always a competitive edge to the meet, but mostly I just wanted to come in and perfect a couple of things I’ve been working on.’’

Jatis topped his previous best vault by 6 inches, reaching it on his final attempt.

“It’s awesome,’’ Jatis said. “It’s a lot of hard work to put in, but it’s great to finally get PRs (personal records).

“My legs were loose when I woke up, had a good break since the last meet. I had a couple of good warmups, and I just knew (Saturday) was going to be a good day. Definitely move up in the rankings.’’

Plainfield Central’s Luke Winder, the 2013 Class 3A state champ, cleared 15-6 to win the event Saturday.

“He’s amazing. He’s good to watch,’’ Jatis said. “It gives me something to look up to.’’

Thornwood’s Dwight Johnson finished third in the 3A 200 meters (22.64).



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